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Friday, 12 August 2005

Tales of Woe

Last night, I went on BART, my favorite subway system, carrying on my person: A tuba, a backpack and a powered monitor speaker. In the backpack, there was a laptop, a mixing board, several power adaptors, a power splitter, a microphone and many cables. Each of these things alone could be characterized as "heavy." I think I should invest in a wheeled contraption on which some of these things could rest, rather than carrying all of them.

So I set up my computer thingee and sound checked it and it sounded ok, if a little weird. It's the patch I wrote for the Garden of Memory concert and I haven't played it since. I only had one speaker (thank god), so I was playing mono. It would be fast enough to re-figure out. So we started playing and I was not getting any kind of consistent sound, mostly static. I looked at my mic input level and it was way down and then it was peaking, all over the place. So I was trying to troubleshoot while playing, which is always um.. special. I think either my mixingboard, mic cable or microphone is broken, or perhaps a bad cable. I dunno. I picked up my tuba and started playing that instead. Thank goodness for doubling.

It was alright. I like playing duets with wind instruments because it's easier to keep track of and I've got a lot of vocabulary in common. I was playing with three other very talented musicians on double bass, saxophone and guitar. It was much more complicated and our vocabularies were all different. (Also, the guitar player was getting awesome electronic-y sounds and I was NOT! curses!) I dunno what people thought. I took off before the end so I could study for my French exam. For some reason, I had very little problem managing my belongings coming into the city, but on the way back, it was difficult to keep my backpack on my shoulders and too keep the speaker balanced on top of it.

And so I made sure to get enough sleep and this morning I awoke, ate breakfast, took vitamins and studied. For the first time in a while, everything seemed to be logical and fit in place. Woot. Then I biked to school and sat down to take the test.

And could not remember a damn thing.

I haven't failed a class since 8th grade (I failed music and computers, for those of you who are curious). Failure, as they say, is not an option. If I fail a class, then I don't get into a good college. If I fail a class, then I don't get my degree. Hell, if I drop a class, I don't graduate on time and end up paying a lot of extra money cuz school is expensive. So I don't drop and I don't fail.

I took a calculus class in junior college that I got a wholly undeserved B in. This is really my only hope for French class. I made sure to say in my godawful essay that I would speak great French once I've been in France for a little while and that why I took the class. If I got any of the tenses right (which I did not), it may even have been comprehensible. Have pity on me!

On the other hand, if I do fail the class, maybe I'll go on to have some sort of exciting french-language career, like with the last classes I failed.

Playing a gig the night before the final wasn't the smartest thing I've ever done, but I don't think it actually made very much difference. I dunno. I got paid less than my bart faire. If I ever win the lottery, I think I'll just play gigs until the money runs out.

I got called sir at least twice last night. My new blue stripey shirt is magic. When I put it on, I become male. Either that or anybody with so much stuff strapped to their person must be a man.

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi there...I'm sorry you had technical difficulties at your gig! I am in San Diego at the flute convention. I saw your call come in on my cell but I was at a concert and couldn't pick up. I don't think you left me a message. If you wanna call again, do leave one, and I'll call you back. -- Polly