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By ana (Fri Oct 28, 2011 at 02:31:58 PM EST) ranting (all tags)
The WFC is in voting, at least for another few days. So far: 7 entries, 11 votes. That's sad. 99 of you have ages, and nearly all of you can read. There's a lot of interesting stuff there, much of it not written by me.

Inside: other rants.

Why is it that my identically labeled collection of white T-shirts includes 3 that are nice and long and stay tucked in all day, while the rest only just reach belt level and must be continually wrestled with all day long? And how can I know, in a world of shrink-wrapped garments, which variety I'm buying?

I hate Halloween, at least as it's practiced in the Commercial States of America. I'll be inside with all the lights out, kthxbye.

For the last 16 years or so, one constant in my life is spending Wednesday nights (at least mid-Sept through May) at choir rehearsals. In some years, another choir occupied another evening's worth of attention and time. Plus transportation time, chilling-out time that could be spent in traffic if it's bad, etc. It was, on the whole, a pleasant way of life.

Now that I actually really need things to do, the rules have been changed.

I'm not sure what's driving this exactly, but they include several I can identify. 
  1. We don't actually have a quorum of volunteers any more. On a good day we have 4/3/1/3 in the S/A/T/B sections, respectively, but at any given rehearsal it could be 2/1/1/2 or worse. So to help with this, the last 8 years or so have featured paid "section leaders", one on a part, who've typically not been expected (read: paid) to appear at week night rehearsals. This leads to a certain disconnect between the choir in rehearsal, and the choir at Mass.
  2. Cue the notion of paying the ringers to come to rehearsals. To keep it more or less revenue-neutral, cut the number of rehearsals to about one a month, and hire a soloist or two to cover the music once a month at Mass.
  3. To go with this is a strictly enforced policy of requiring rehearsal attendance (but only for volunteers) in order to sing Sundays. No exceptions, unless you're a paid section leader. This is, I presume, aimed squarely at certain people who've been in the choir for years and are rather relaxed about attendance and punctuality for rehearsals.
  4. This also reduces the time spent by the director thinking about us ordinary mortals, in favor of The Other Choir (all paid professionals), who Make Real Music.
  5. There was another point... Oh, right. Better use of Sunday morning warm-up periods. This is a good thing, except that it makes for frenetic activity all morning, and I kind of need some down time to, you know, meditate and pray and think about Sacraments and stuff.
So the group is no longer collegial, friendly, people to spend a pleasant evening and morning with once a week. It's a job, shading towards a chore.

This past weekend was the first "soloist only" Sunday. I was feeling as if my services were not desired, especially after an e-mail exchange with the director in which it was explained that I will be "sorely missed" Christmas Eve.

Friday night I posted something on facebook about being afraid of the completely empty weekend. Another choir dude I know suggested I could join his choir... I'll say I'm tempted.

- - - - - [this is a partial dividing line] - - - - -

So recently my sister suggested, for reasons of her own family's constraints, doing the winterval visit to the parentals the week of Dec 12 instead of around Christmas. "Great," we both said. "That'll solve the perennial problem of me singing Christmas Eve and having to travel Christmas Day.

Except, see above; I'll miss the mid-December rehearsal. No singing Christmas Eve for me.

This also leads to the dread prospect of spending the Holidays alone.

Partly to compensate for the busy-ness of Sunday mornings, and partly because when I'm upset, the natural inclination is toward greater piety, I've been attending weekday services from time to time as opportunity allows. There's a monastery not far from my office; they have an all-up service Tuesday evening, and a small one Wednesday at noon. And the church I actually belong to has weekday services most noons (and Wednesday evenings, which conflict with choir rehearsals, however see above).

It's nice, having time... making time, to just sit, watch the changing light as the sun moves across the sky outside, filtering through stained glass, and be.

I used to do that a lot. I had forgotten how centering it can be.

It's Nearly November, and the prospect of writing yet another nano beckons. At the moment, the ideas I have would not be fit for human consumption. But occasionally I have an intriguing idea...

As per usual, I have a somewhat interesting bunch of characters in mind, but not that much in the way of conflict or plot.

Also, my blood pressure's a little high. Reading about diets and such, it seems I'm already doing a lot of that stuff: whole grains, somewhat less sodium, fruits and veggies (could do more).

Presumably I need more exercise, not just for this, but I'm getting to the "use it or lose it" time of life, and I'd like to be able to walk when (if) I reach my father's current age. He's having some trouble with that.


Since I was in junior high school and was hazed and bullied mercilessly by classmates and gym teachers, I've avoided sports like the plague. I still get queasy thinking about "gym".

I don't mind going for a walk, either for pleasure or if there's a destination and an errand. As the weather deteriorates, that'll be less possible, and less pleasant. Perhaps I need another wii.

I also have some issues around food. It's good that I have a repertoire of a half-dozen recipes I can make fairly easily on days when I don't want to think about food. But changing things around might involve eroding some of the already scarce ground I'm actually standing on.

And that, as they say, will be enough of that.

< Up to snuff | Writing Exercises >
Go vote. | 14 comments (14 topical, 0 hidden)
NaNo by Oberon (4.00 / 1) #1 Fri Oct 28, 2011 at 02:45:56 PM EST
I have a somewhat interesting bunch of characters in mind, but not that much in the way of conflict or plot.

So .... the novel version of HuSi then?

I have a NaNo in planning. The last time I tried it I got to a fairly miserable 5000 words, but this time I have a plot idea I'm pretty excited about, so it should at least carry me further than that.

How now, mad spirit?
Plot? by ana (4.00 / 1) #2 Fri Oct 28, 2011 at 02:55:46 PM EST

Wait, what?

Seriously, it helps to have a person or two reading along, somebody who'll be disappointed if you don't write them something to read over their morning coffee. 

I now know what the noise that is usually spelled "lolwhut" sounds like. --Kellnerin

[ Parent ]
I'm not pretending to know what I'm doing .... by Oberon (4.00 / 1) #5 Fri Oct 28, 2011 at 04:59:56 PM EST
I have no idea how to write fiction (or practice doing so), and have very few ideas for characters, so I suspect the main character will be a version of my own boring self wandering through a series of bizarre and largely unconnected events.

Then again, something very similar could be said of The Hitch-Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy, so there's some hope.

I'm certainly not going to let anybody else read it though, that would be too embarrassing.

How now, mad spirit?
[ Parent ]
Here's the thing, see. by technician (2.00 / 0) #3 Fri Oct 28, 2011 at 04:13:33 PM EST
I may have time this weekend to read a story in a coherent fashion, but it'll be at most two or three stories. It may take me another ten days to get the rest of the stories read and digested.

Three of them... by ana (4.00 / 1) #4 Fri Oct 28, 2011 at 04:22:19 PM EST
are song lyrics. Which, by the way, you and clock should totally sing, and make up tunes to (respectively). 

So that leaves just 4 stories. And being the magnanimous person I am, feel free to omit mine. That's three. Problem solved!

I now know what the noise that is usually spelled "lolwhut" sounds like. --Kellnerin

[ Parent ]
Fruit of the Loom makes Long t-shirts. by ammoniacal (2.00 / 0) #6 Fri Oct 28, 2011 at 09:24:18 PM EST

"To this day that was the most bullshit caesar salad I have every experienced..." - triggerfinger

They also make short ones. by ana (2.00 / 0) #7 Fri Oct 28, 2011 at 09:25:12 PM EST
And then they put them in identical packages. 

I now know what the noise that is usually spelled "lolwhut" sounds like. --Kellnerin

[ Parent ]
Another issue... by belldandi (2.00 / 0) #8 Sat Oct 29, 2011 at 07:25:46 AM EST
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[ Parent ]
er... by ana (2.00 / 0) #9 Sat Oct 29, 2011 at 08:10:44 AM EST

I now know what the noise that is usually spelled "lolwhut" sounds like. --Kellnerin

[ Parent ]
The ones I buy have a sticker indicating so. by ammoniacal (2.00 / 0) #10 Sat Oct 29, 2011 at 11:36:04 AM EST

"To this day that was the most bullshit caesar salad I have every experienced..." - triggerfinger

[ Parent ]
aye-aye by johnny (2.00 / 0) #11 Sat Oct 29, 2011 at 12:43:26 PM EST
Will read & vote. Before Monday mid-morning. I forget, does this make the deadline?

She has effectively checked out. She's an un-person of her own making. So it falls to me.--ad hoc (in the hole)
Probably. by ana (2.00 / 0) #12 Sat Oct 29, 2011 at 01:00:54 PM EST
The deadline for submitting stories was midnight on the given date, in the last timezone before the international date line. So I imagine if it's still Oct 31 anywhere on earth when you vote, it'll count. 

I now know what the noise that is usually spelled "lolwhut" sounds like. --Kellnerin

[ Parent ]
Yep. by Scrymarch (2.00 / 0) #14 Sat Oct 29, 2011 at 08:19:24 PM EST

Iambic Web Certified

[ Parent ]
Stuff by Herring (4.00 / 2) #13 Sat Oct 29, 2011 at 01:29:50 PM EST
I will get around to reading the remaining entries. Actually I will have to read them all again to vote.

You choir problems, sound like a lot of volunteer organisations. We have around 350 people in our cycling club. The rules say that you must volunteer to marshall at least one event per year (two if you race). We run about 15 events and these typically require about 10 marshalls but every fucking time there's something on and we struggle. And often it's the same faces turning up each time - A has done about 6 events this year and I've done 4 (with another one coming up).

You can't inspire people with facts
- Small Gods

Go vote. | 14 comments (14 topical, 0 hidden)