Tuesday, July 17, 2007

I'm dynamite and I don't know why.

I may have made a thrifting miscalculation today when I bought vintage denim culottes, complete with mom-waist. I bought them to sell, but they fit perfectly, so now I feel all confused. I am in fact wearing them right now, as a sort of audition before I go to bed early. I cannot seem to get enough sleep these days.

Opera camp has been going splendidly, though it is weird not to have much time to myself. I am accustomed to having a lot of it. But I also know that I function much better when I have more on my plate, so I'm feeling good right now. Well maybe not right now, given that I am wearing the mom-culottes and am confused about them. But mostly, overall, I feel good. Like every gig, I will have the "what now" when it's over, but this time I get to go to England: my what-now period will be eaten up by travel preparation. Mostly, I need to shop for comfortable shoes. My feet are officially getting old and demanding comfort footwear on a more ongoing basis, yet I still have a lust for slightly ridiculous shoes. I know what you're thinking, and I'll answer you right now: yes it IS hard to be me.

Thanks to one of my pianist colleagues at the opera, I had a memory lane trip that I have just revised and expanded with the help of Google. See, for about a month in 1988, I was in an R & B band fronted by a driven young 13 year old who now has a crazy website. This is no joke. I am proud of her even though she is wearing buttfloss on her website, because she has all of the self-marketing mojo that I lack, and then some. And girl, I apologize for blowing your age cover by revealing that we were 13 in 1988.

I do believe our band was called "Ice."

Anyway, what brought this all crashing back today was my pianist colleague--the same guy who suggested that my "first day of opera camp" outfit was great because it looked like a 70s detergent box--singing a little Janet Jackson, specifically "When I Think of You," which was and is a great song. It has come up more than once in the last week, in fact. We were actually discussing The Jacksons today, and how Jermaine has a son called "Jermajesty," which is funny every single time I think about it. "I like to think about Tito," my friend said. "Like what is he doing right now?"

"Eating a McRib sandwich," I posited.

But back to Janet. My short-lived stint as an R & B keyboardist was based on the totally false premise that I was a good piano player. I had taken 5 years of piano at that point, and this remains the sum total of my piano instruction. I had also been roped into improvising an accompaniment to my junior high choir rendition of "Lean On Me," the Club Nouveau version. I am sure that I sucked, but this solidified my reputation as a pianist.

So the singer convinced me to come to a practice in her basement, where the gear was all set up, her dad was playing the bass, and I was given the music for "When I Think of You." For the keyboard player, this involves like three chords, which I immediately memorized, creating a further false impression that I was some sort of genius. I was also allowed to sing a verse, which I am certain I did with my burgeoning whitegirl vibrato.

Later, the singer's mom quizzed me on what whitefolks eat for dinner and found that tacos are pretty universal. This detail was, I think, my pianist friend's favorite part of the story.

I have removed the culottes and now I am going to bed.


  1. Man, I'm dyin' to know which opera camp you're at. I'm at Camp Couchass this summer.

  2. Tacos ARE universal. I had some last night, in fact.

    I loved this entire post SO MUCH that I'm inspired to return to the blog I deserted a month ago.

    When do you leave for jolly old England?

  3. Twink, just triangulate my home vector and that will narrow it right down for you. And bear in mind that I am teaching and not singing. Not like when we were at opera camp in the shitty city...

    BFS, I leave a week from today! Holy shit!

  4. Are culottes the same as capris? Or are those 2 different things?

  5. I think you could also handle the keyboard part on your friend's website song....

    Have you ever made a tempeh McRib sandwich?


  6. Melinda, behold, a historical rundown of culottes. To answer your question directly, no, they aren't the same as capris. Culottes tend to be just below knee-length and skirty, yet pantsy at the same time. Very 80s.

  7. I believe I call them gauchos.