I honestly don’t understand the whole Carnival of Music thing, but Scott’s Carnival of Music post is pretty darn hilarious.

I know that the blogger who is hosting links to a bunch of different music blogs, but I’m not sure if the blogger chooses the links, or if the other folks request to be linked, or if it’s a little of both. I figure I’m not quite the intellectual blog they link to, so I’ve not paid a great deal of attention to how it all works, but having just finished the latest Harry Potter book I really cracked up reading Scott’s clever post. (And you don’t have to worry about spoilers.)

31. July 2005 · Comments Off · Categories: imported, Quotes

It is cruel, you know, that music should be so beautiful. It has the beauty of loneliness and of pain; of strength and freedom; the beauty of disappointment and never-satisfied love; the cruel beauty of nature, and everlasting beauty of monotony.

-Benjamin Britten
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Sarah, at A Glass of Chianti writes about a new student she has who is asking for a clarinet reed. Check it out. Black reeds?? Yikes! This is what some teachers have to deal with. Sigh.

But reeds. Reeds, reeds, reeds. Will the horror never end?

This past year I have been ordering oboe reeds from various suppliers. One has provided me with a few reeds that are so playable that I actually used them for Les Mis! (Yes, I am admitting this here; I didn’t use one reed of my own making for the entire 7 week run.) Unfortunately about 3/4 of the reeds she sent, though, wouldn’t work for me at all. Because those few worked so well she and I might try to figure out what the problem is and see if she can become my students’ reed supplier. All the rest of the suppliers simply made reeds I couldn’t use. At all. Either the overlap was on the wrong side (very common problem, by the way), they leaked, or were otherwise unplayable. Now these reed makers are also oboists, and they use reeds just like the ones they sent me, so obviously we either use entirely different embouchures (quite possible, as I take in very little reed and some folks nearly swallow the thing), the reeds act differently in their neck of the woods (temperature, humidity … they do play a part), or they play on even worse reeds than I make! Believe me, I can make some mighty rotten reeds! But I will continue to work with the one very patient woman if she’s willing, and I will continue to search for others that I like.

Meanwhile, I have to get my own act together and start working on reeds again. During Les Mis I had no desire to even look at a reed when I wasn’t performing or teaching. Now that I have some time, yours truly is going to have to bite the bullet.

Any of you out there want to shame me? Do it! Tell me how many reeds you are working on? Tell me how quickly you can put one together? I don’t mind a little shame now and then.

And if you want to send me a reed, you know I’d let you. ;-)

31. July 2005 · Comments Off · Categories: imported, Ramble

For the longest time I’ve had this one blue spot on my wedding ring finger, looking at the finger palm side up. It looked like a vein had a bubble in it. I figured, in fact, that it might just be a weak spot in the vein. I showed it to a few people and no one was alarmed, nor was I.

Yesterday I was taking some bags of clothing out for HOPE and I guess I popped the thing. It didn’t hurt. It just swelled up a lot. And turned quite blue. Some friends I lunched with yesterday suggested I go see the doctor, and I will (promise) if it’s in bad shape tomorrow. But yesterday it was a fairly dark blue and swollen. i think it’s getting better now. I still can’t get my ring off, which I usually can do as long as I run my hand under cold water and use soap. It’s still swollen, but oh well.

But, mostly, I’m writing just to ask if anyone else has ever had this happen. It still doesn’t hurt. I have fine mobility. So I’m not worried. Just curious.

Very Late Update
Since I wrote this entry, someone did a search on “bubble vein finger” and I figured maybe they might land here again. My finger is fine. I showed the doctor about a month after the “event”. She didn’t even flinch. It’s no biggie. Just so you know. (08-08-2006)
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