Friday, June 22, 2007

Friday Random Ten

Here is what iTunes served me up this afternoon.

"Don't Be Shy" by Cat Stevens, Footsteps In The Dark
"Tryin' To Throw Your Arms Around the World" by U2, Achtung Baby
"This Is the Life" by Weird Al Yankovic*, Dare To Be Stupid
"Rose Colored Stained Glass Windows" by Jars of Clay*, Never Say Dinosaur
"Armadillo Breakdown" by various bluegrass artists, Country Cooking
"April Come She Will" by Simon & Garfunkel, The Concert In Central Park
"California Girls" by The Beach Boys, The Greatest Hits, Vol. 1
"Callin' Baton Rouge" by Garth Brooks, The Hits
"The Wild West Is Where I Want To Be" by Tom Lehrer, Songs & More Songs
"Shop Around" by Smokey Robinson & The Miracles, Smokey Robinson & The Miracles

This was apparently a week for oldies. I didn't even remember I had that Beach Boys album, and Smokey Robinson and Simon & Garfunkel made appearances, as well. Also, my favorite song from my favorite album took its turn on the random ten. Never Say Dinosaur is one of those tribute albums where different artists take a song from the original group and cover it. This album is a tribute to Petra, the Christian rock band that defined Christian rock bands, and there is not a slacker track on the thing. This song by JoC, a favorite from whom I have so many albums from that it would be silly for them not to show up every week, was one I never remembered from Petra. However, the words are phenomenal, about churches that put up the blinders about the world outside their walls, refusing to acknowledge the pain of people and being that much poorer for the ignorance.

* Acts I've seen live.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

A Climbing Meme

So James thought it would be fun to make me do this little meme. And I, always a sucker, am obliging.

My Rules (Okay, so they're someone else's):

1. I have to post these rules before I give you the facts.
2. Each player starts with eight random facts/habits about themselves.
3. People who are tagged need to write their own blog about their eight things and post these rules.
4. At the end of your blog, you need to choose eight people to get tagged and list their names. (You’re not the boss of me!)
5. Don’t forget to leave them a comment telling them they’re tagged, and to read your blog.

My Random Facts:

1. I grew four inches after I got to college. You hear of this happening with guys, but I've never heard of another girl who did so much growing after turning 18. I actually was looking at applying to West Point, but I was too short at the time to be allowed in. Now look at what they're missing!

2. I have a nearly perfect heart-shaped birthmark on my thigh. It's a reverse birthmark, so you can only see it when I have a tan and the heart stays white. Kids in elementary school teased me for having put a heart-shaped sticker on my leg and gotten a tan around it. Honestly, what kid has that much diligence to do that every time they go outside in shorts?

3. I have moved a lot. I had lived in 13 houses (11 cities, 3 countries) by the time I graduated from highschool. After graduation, my parents calmed down, and have only moved twice since. I, however, have moved to 8 more locations in that time.

4. My eyes are different colors: one is green and one is brown. You can tell which is which, but I can't, because the brown one is blind. I didn't know they were different colors until high school, when a guy friend pointed it out. My parents never noticed, and there are no pictures of me as a kid where I don't have red-eye or a patch on an eye or something, so I have no idea if they've always been this way, or changed over time.

5. I love to climb trees. Always have. As a kid I climbed coconut trees, which you must climb barefoot, so I'm really a barefoot climber. I may have done this in the past at parties as almost a parlor trick, but I can't say for sure. I don't do it as often anymore, but just last week I climbed the orange tree in the backyard to do some harvesting of the higher branches.

6. I skipped a grade and repeated a grade. Well, sort of. In April or May of my second grade year, I was moving to my fourth school for the year. My parents figured my second grade education was mostly shot anyway, so they convinced my new school to put me in the combined 3rd/4th grade class with my uncle, so I would know somebody. However, jumping to the end of 3rd grade was hard without the preliminary stuff for that year. The next year, I did 3rd grade for real, and multiplication was a lot easier that way.

7. I stalked a basketball player in college. It was the beginning of my basketball obsession, and this player seemed to be very affected by the mood of the fans. In order for the team to play well, he needed to play well. So I figured out where he lived, his email address, his phone number, and I would call or send an email before and/or after most games to wish him good luck and let him know he had a fan in the stands. He played better when I'd called him before the game, so I kept doing it. He wasn't real bright, though, so I don't think he realized I was the same person who called the last time. Is it really stalking if they don't notice?

8. I'm a terrible klutz. I trip over everything, including a completely flat, smooth floor. Stairs are absolutely the worst. I remember a time when my future husband and I had been dating a couple of months, and we got to the top of a flight of stairs, and he just stopped, jaw dropped, staring at me. He said, "That's the first time I've ever seen you climb a set of stairs without tripping."

My Victims:

Monica, if you're still out there, you're tagged.
Stephanie -- use this as your foray into the blogging world!
Matt already did this, but since I have no other readers that I know of, this one will have to count in my 8.

Oh, and if you're a reader who doesn't comment, just let me know you're alive and clinging to every word I write. Plus, that way I can check out your blog, too!

Friday, June 15, 2007

Friday Random Ten

Here is this week's ten piles of randomness.

"The Thunder Rolls" by Garth Brooks, The Hits
"Spinnin' Round" by PFR*, Goldie's Last Day
"What Have I Done To Deserve This?" by Pet Shop Boy, Discography: The Complete Singles Collection
"Imagination" by Erasure, The Innocents
"Piano Sonata #21 in C" played by Wilhelm Kempff, Beethoven: Klaviersonaten
"Me-Stew" by Shel Silverstein, Where The Sidewalk Ends
"I'm Alright" by Jars of Clay*, If I Left the Zoo
"In The Likeness of You" by Petra, Unseen Power
"Scarborough Fair" by Simon & Garfunkel, The Concert In Central Park
"Let Mercy Lead" by Rich Mullins*, Brother's Keeper

I remember the first time I saw Jars of Clay. I actually went to see PFR, and Jars was opening for them. The show was in a church in Fort Worth, and some friends of mine and I drove up from college attend. It was a capacity crowd, at just about 300 people. Jars did their entire set acoustically, and were touring that year with a violin and cello which worked well in the small venue. I was instantly in love with their sound. When it took 45 minutes for PFR to have their stuff set up to go on afterwards, I even tried to convince my friends we could leave any time -- no need to see the main act. We stayed, and it was completely worth it, but I was set after just seeing Jars. And a new fan was born. I guess that's why there are opening acts at concerts.

* Acts I've seen live.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Friday Random Ten

We have an earlier than normal random ten today, since I'll be uninternetted this afternoon and evening.

"No More" by Madeleine Peyroux, Careless Love
"Creed" by Rich Mullins*, A Liturgy, A Legacy, & A Ragamuffin Band
"She Blinded Me With Science" by Thomas Dolby, Living in Oblivion
"Dying Man" by PFR*, Goldie's Last Day
"French Rockin' Boogie" by Geno Delafose, Zydeco Essentials
"Miracle Child" by Newsboys, Take Me To Your Leader
"Deeper Than The Holler" by Randy Travis, Greatest Hits Vol. 1
"F.O.D." by Green Day, Dookie
"Radically Saved" by Carman, The Absolute Best
"My Turn Now" by Stephen Curtis Chapman, The Live Adventure

A rather eclectic pile of music from country to rock to '80s to blues. It was nice, but the highlight was the hammered dulcimer from Rich Mullins. At the concert I went to, he pulled that instrument out and sat on the stage barefoot and played it, and I was smitten -- not with the 45-year-old man, but with the instrument. I've seen a few since then in stores, and I've seriously considered getting one. One my date the other night, my husband mentioned that while he got me a fancy new digital camera for the anniversary, what he really has wanted to get me was a hammered dulcimer. He says it's been his first choice for me for every gift-giving occasion, but he just hasn't found one he liked yet. It's nice to know he does listen when I'm talking about bizarre instruments that interest me. And I think it's hard to look for a bass teacher -- imagine trying to find a hammered dulcimer teacher!

* Acts I've seen live. Go figure -- even with as few concerts as I've been to, two of those artists showed up today on the random ten.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Not a Random Nine

Today marks the ninth anniversary of that glorious day that we can only just barely remember with the help of the wedding pictures. Where are those things, anyway? Hmmm... I guess I won't be remembering that day anytime soon.

Growing up, I moved a lot. I mean, a lot. Thirteen houses, eleven cities and three countries by the time I graduated highschool. When you move that much, the relationship you have with your family becomes that much stronger. Those are the only folks who really know where you're coming from. Regardless of how much my crazy sister drives me crazy, I know I can mention climbing trees to harvest coconuts or Mrs. Noyd or eating yellow wood sorrel when we pretended to run away from home, and she knows exactly what I'm talking about. No long story needed -- she gets it, because she experienced it, too.

Now, my life has changed such that my husband is the person with whom I have the most shared experiences that come in handy. I have friends that I've known longer than him, but a friendship is different than the spousal relationship. This man and I know more about each other than we'd probably care to admit (regardless of how often his mother tries to explain to me what he's like -- I think I get it). Reflecting on how long we've been together, I feel like I'm mere minutes from being one of those old ladies who puts her teeth in a glass before going to bed. And then I remember that one of the benefits of getting married *really* young is that we are here at the 9-year point in the prime of our life. Obviously, our relationship is different now than it was then, but we've gotten here together, and that is the stuff that other people can't really understand, regardless of how many stories one tells.

So, excuse me while I go get ready to go out and enjoy some time with the man who continue to makes me smile (most days) this far from that wedding day bliss that now seems silly and almost foolish. I have a very important date, and I can't be late.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Learning at Thirty

Since I purchased my bass guitar, I have been practicing as much as my little fingers will allow. Who knew you needed so much left pinky strength to play? And such big hands to reach all the frets at the same time?

At this point, I know which string is which, and I can play that bastion of musical prowess, "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star" in the keys of D and E. I can also play the bass line to the verses of Big Bad John, but the chorus still eludes me at this point. I'm trying to have the discipline to spend a few minutes on hand strength, a few minutes on fundamental pattern learning, and a few minutes on fun stuff each practice session -- playing along with iTunes, trying to figure out which notes fit and so forth. However, my expectation is that my resolve will weaken in the coming weeks, after the initial newness wears off.

So, I'm going to be looking for a teacher. It may seem like a copout, but I figure I need to learn some basics pretty quickly, and I'd rather learn them right than spend years doing things wrong and then having to unlearn those bad habits. Being an adult looking for a music teacher is going to be a bit different than looking for one while a student. I have a couple of sources that I think I can look at for teachers, but I feel like I should interview one and figure out if I'm going to hate them before signing up. But I find I have no idea what to ask in an interview of a potential bass teacher. Any ideas?

Friday, June 01, 2007

Friday Random Ten

With a short week, I almost forgot that today was Friday, and time to add in the random 10. Without further ado, this is what I got.

"When You Are Old And Gray" by Tom Lehrer, Songs & More Songs
"Tears In Heaven" by Eric Clapton, Rush soundtrack
"Send Out A Prayer" by Anointed, The Call
"Be Still" by Newsboys, Going Public
"Poisoning Pigeons in the Park" by Tom Lehrer, Songs & More Songs
"I Want To Live In A Wigwam" by Cat Stevens, Footsteps In The Dark
"Lyin' Eyes" by The Eagles, Their Greatest Hits
"Breathe" by The Newsboys, Take Me To Your Leader
"Lobachevsky" by Tom Lehrer, Songs & More Songs
"Weary By Now" by Ron David Moore, The Vision's Clear

I never get over how Tom Lehrer is able to fit so many words in a single musical measure, but what's up with a random set of songs with three songs from the same album? Doesn't that violate some sort of law of randomness, or something? When "Send Out a Prayer" started, I was sure that my iTunes had goofed and started "Tears in Heaven" again. Who knew a song by a Gospel/R&B group could sound like the former Cream frontman? Or maybe it's more surprising that the former Cream frontman could sound like a Gospel/R&B group. It was funny to remember that Cat Stevens pronounced "wigwam" so that it rhymed with "caravan". Ah, the things you forget when you haven't heard a song in a gazillion years. Overall, a pretty mellow set. "Breathe" was the closest to something that had a nifty bass line to listen too (and I'm pretty sure I heard the use of a distortion pedal at one point -- mmmmm, maybe one day). Perhaps my focus is shifted based (ha!) on my recent purchase.

*Acts I've seen live. Oh right -- I haven't seen any of these folks live.