Friday, October 19, 2012

On The Lighter Side

A couple of funny things came across D's radar recently:

An email gathering info for D's annual review was cc'ed to him incorrectly resulting in a joke review:

"Re:  Areas Requiring Improvement -- Needs to buy a car that is better than his wife's...something that isn't conducive to Tilley hats and Birkenstock wearing..." (remember D drives a Subaru Outback aka "old man wagon")

Last weekend, D wondered why the subtle background music choice was so poor while watching a foreign film, set in India, with his noise cancelling headphones.  At first it seemed appropriate but when it continued on, he took his headphones off and realized it was me trying to get acquainted with my violin...

Speaking of violins...Holy smokes are the tips of my fingers sore and arm achy!  There is a lot of awkward coordination and arm twisting involved with learning to play the violin, not to mention the mental exhaustion.  It looks natural when watching someone else (that's because they are good) but it really isn't.  There is a serious spatial requirement for this instrument.

Trying to keep the bow "straight" (perpendicular to strings and centered) with your head tilted while looking at it at an angle is challenging.  Plus you have music to contend with in front of you.  The violin is held by your chin and jaw, not your hand. 

And the bow hand?  Who knew you didn't just hold it but have to almost clamp on it with sides of bent fingers?  Nothing about it is natural.  And your hand either cramps up or just exhausts and bunches together limiting the amount of playing time until it wakes up again.   

I'm sure it will become second nature in no time?  I almost forgot to bring my violin the first lesson.  Not used to having to provide my own instrument, tune it, wipe it and rosin it.  Despite all my fumbles, my brain and I are really enjoying the challenge. 

Having a music background (good ear and ability to read music) helps tremendously.  I'm so glad I scrambled to get my piano tuned.  I don't know how you could just pick up this instrument without being able to confirm pitch (I'm sitting at my piano to make sure I am reproducing the right notes) or having to learn to read music at the same time as I am staring down my violin and arms constantly right now.  I need another set of eyes!

My teacher thinks I'll progress fairly quickly so that was nice to hear but I'll believe it when I hear it.  D may end up putting his foot down and relegating me to the garage.  I already have a lot of homework.  More than I would have given a beginner.   My next lesson won't be for 3 weeks and he expects I'll have time to practice and work ahead...

On that note, the east coast beckons and I won't be bringing my violin.  Crossing fingers for reasonable weather.  Hurricanes would not be considered reasonable...  Back in 2 weeks.

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