Thursday, January 21, 2010

Report from the interior.

I typed that title and then I remembered where I snagged the phrase: in Mating (one of my favorite books as I may have mentioned once or eleventy times), it's a fart euphemism, or more accurately, a fart response. As in "Ah, a report from the interior." This post may prove to be the internet equivalent of flatulence, but that's not really what I had in mind when I typed the phrase.

Mostly I wanted to provide an update on my weekend activities. I didn't get the thesis done. I did hack away at it, including deleting a bunch of beloved paragraphs that ultimately had nothing to do with anything, which is always important and difficult. And I wrote some new stuff. But it became apparent on my first read-through that this wasn't a one-weekend project. I need to keep working on it, and I will, now that my two-year stint of not working on it has ended. Can you believe that? The last save date on the file was in the spring of 2008. Actual years ago.

I'm getting a Doctor of Musical Arts, not a PhD, so the requirements for the paper are nowhere near what they are for a more academic dissertation. If you're getting a degree in music performance, performance is necessarily the bulk of your graduation requirement. So you do five recitals or their equivalent, and write a paper for which there seem to be no documented rules: it could be 30 pages or 100, scholarly or speculative, predicated on a faulty translation (this has happened), etc. This makes it all the more ridic that I'm not finished with the thing, especially since I never seriously entertained the illusion that my paper needs to contribute something to a body of scholarship.

Anyhoo. Since you asked, the paper is about a piece that was commissioned for me and which I performed SEVEN years ago. About half the paper is about Amy Lowell (the subject of the piece) and her poetry, and the other half is about our piece--the process and musical language. Whee!

I also did this over the weekend:

Red fringe.

This was a planned endeavor, not thesis avoidance, so just put that idea out of your head. It's how I kicked off the weekend. I can see how people who start dyeing their hair or getting tattoos or whatever have a hard time stopping. The second my hair was dry I was like "MORE." This happened in the middle of the process, after I rinsed the bleach out:


Since I had to rinse in the sink or tub, I thought it would be a good idea to don some eye protection. I do work in health and safety, after all. Fortunately my swim goggles were close at hand.

I have been in a major frump slump lately (which the dye job was intended to partly address). I'm not sure what's triggering it, but I'm sure I haven't been getting enough exercise, so I started walking in the mornings before work. Y'all exercisers know that this does wonders for the disposition, but what you don't know if you don't live in the frozen north is that intentionally doing stuff outside helps you deal with being in the frozen north. Plus, you get to see your fellow hardy humans doing the same thing, and lots of dogs romping in the snow, which invariably cracks me up. I should probably have a video of dogs romping in snow that I can watch for daily pick-me-up purposes.

Also, it's pretty:

n.b.: this is a sunset, not a sunrise

Or I mean it can be, sometimes. This morning it was so gray-white that everything was the same color, and then the ice pellets came. But I went anyway. I mean, we live by a damn lake. It's a privilege to be five minutes from a shoreline with a walking path, especially one that is not overrun by ultra-fit hipsters in tech gear.

I have another post brewing about Friday Night Lights, but it'll have to wait.


  1. I could not love the hair more.

    You should post performance vids sometime. I'll bet I'm not alone in wanting to hear the pipes.

  2. I can maybe hit you with an mp3. Nothing is ever good enough though. You know how that goes?

    I can do your hair too, girl.

  3. Love your hair! I can see how it would be addictive. Wish I could show you my cousin's girlfriend's photo gallery because she changes her hair color constantly -- pink, blue, platinum, what have you. And it's gorgeous. Come to think of it, SSB used to do that too.

    You're not alone, Melinda, in wanting to hear them. Although she did post something a long time ago, as I recall.

  4. I just had to say - I LOVE your hair :)

  5. Awesome hurr. And I also what to hear the pipes.

  6. What? Want. Dammit. I suck.

  7. You are such an opera-singing badass!

  8. Wow- it has been that long since the Amy Lowell? DANG. Nice Locks!

  9. 1. Mating is my favorite book. I've always thought we shared a similar sensibility, but I thought it was about thrifting. Now everything is clear.

    2. The hair looks a.) professionally done, and b.) awesome.

    Leah D

  10. Leah! Awesome. I am always trying to get people to read that book and I don't know if I've ever succeeded. I reread it every other year or so. Related: when I read "Mortals" after it fiiiiinally came out and got to the chapter where the Denoons show up, I like screamed and jumped out of bed. It's possible that I get a little too invested in fictional characters. There will probably be more evidence of that in the Friday Night Lights post, if I ever write it.

  11. I come back regularly to look at your goggles pic. Love it.

  12. First: Your hair is fabumous y muy picante.

    Next: I have started to teach Yoga for Singers workshops which necessitate a steady stream of articles and wisdom. To wit, I began to reread and cannibalize La Thesis(euse?) and found it sorely lacking. Perhaps one day, you will crap yours out and leave the perfectionista-ing for its afterlife. It's endlessly cathartic and mortifying, promise.

    C: Dogs will romp in anything messier than air, which is lovely, but I'll still never erase the image of 2 snow-booted shih-tzus falling to one cheek on the subzero Minnesota earth because their paws were hypothermic. I miss weather.

    4/Last/Typed too much already: Your snow sun fantasia picture made me unexpectedly weep, like gentle pressure on my solar plexus. Sincere thanks for that. Again, I miss weather. And you.

  13. A-MAAAAAAAAA-ZING hair. Why can't I hurry up and cut my own off? I cannot believe you did that yourself. Looks fabulous.

    I'll check out Mating...sounds like it's worth it.