As I wrote yesterday, today I’m taking my students to a music festival, where they will play and sing solo selections for judges. They get a score based on their performance, as well as useful feedback from the judges about tone, pitch, articulation, musicality, and the rest. It’s a very fun day, but also a very busy one.
As I noted in yesterday’s post, it always seems to coincide with one of the busiest seasons of the year, when time constrains are at their most stringent and intense. Almost everyone reading this blog understands there is an ebbing and flowing to life: you might enjoy one (even two!) weeks of routine, maybe even a bit of a lighter schedule than usual.
Then—BAM!—everything comes due, breaks, and goes haywire at once. As my friend and regular reader Barnard Fife once told me, “trouble is like grapes: it comes in bunches.” Amen, BF.
The original post behind this threat, “Monday Steakhouse Blues,” was written at a particularly tough time for yours portly. I found myself without Internet and putting in very long hours (and this was well before I had twenty-ish students for private lessons). I spent a weary Monday evening eating steak at Western Sizzlin’ and writing a blog post on my phone. The steak was good, but everything else at the time was pretty miserable.
Thank God for better organization, a greater sense of perspective (this is just life, and it will pass), and for 10 milligrams of citalopram every morning. Gotta be thankful for the little things.
The “Memorable Monday” version of this post, which I have also reblogged below, went live the week before everything in South Carolina shut down due to the dawning of The Age of The Virus. In other words, it was the last week of The Before Times, in The Long, Long Ago. There are many things I miss about The Before Times, but a silver-lining of The Age of The Virus was that it saved me from the intense burnout I was experiencing at the time.
With that, here is 9 March 2020’s “Memorable Monday II: Monday Steakhouse Blues” (on a Thursday!):
Almost exactly a year ago today, I wrote a brief post from my cellphone at a Western Sizzlin’ in Florence, South Carolina. At the time, I was incredibly stressed out, due to a combination of factors: the end-of-quarter dash to grade papers, the looming Music Festival, and a home without Internet.
Here it is a year later and the seventy posts of a year ago seem minuscule. I also find myself in a similar state of frantic scrambling. This year, my Internet is working—thank goodness!—but we’re in the midst of our once-every-five-years reaccreditation visit. It’s the culmination of eighteen-months of work, and the administration is hyper-vigilant (and extremely on edge) about us presenting the best, most Potemkin Village-esque version of the school.
I’m also preparing kids for the aforementioned Music Festival—which should now be done—and working on buying curtains for our stage. Yikes! And, in an object lesson of how we never learn our lessons, I’m struggling under a mountain of papers for third quarter report cards. Ay caramba!
As such, today’s post is a reblog, a look back at one year ago. I probably won’t eat steak tonight, but I did eat a fourteen-ounce, $35 blackened ribeye on the school’s dime last night, so that’s something.
Here is 2019’s “Monday Steakhouse Blues“:
I’m writing today’s post on my phone at one of the few surviving Western Sizzlin’ steakhouses in America. Yep, it’s been that kind of day.
Yesterday’s post marked the 70th consecutive daily post on this blog. That means I’ve posted at least one post a day for ten weeks.
I don’t have much to say today. I’m taking a group of roughly forty student-musicians to a “Solo and Ensemble”-style music festival tomorrow, and today report card grades were due. Without Internet at the house, everything had to get done today in a compressed time.
As such, the only interesting thing I’ve had a chance to hear about today was Tucker Carlson saying a bunch of controversial, awesome stuff on a radio show a decade ago—and, instead of kowtowing to the Left, he invited folks to debate him on his show: https://www.breitbart.com/the-media/2019/03/11/tucker-carlson-refuses-to-apologize-over-media-matters-compilation-of-shock-jock-call-ins/
More to come tomorrow and Wednesday. I couldn’t blow a 70-day streak.