I decided not to drive anywhere today. I try to do this as frequently as possible these days. It’s not just about the gas … it’s about the distraction. If I drive somewhere, I put off all the things I need to do.

Mainly it’s about reeds.

So today I made my latté. I blogged and showered and had some raisin bran. I made the bed and did some laundry. And finally I could delay no longer. Reeds were worked on.

First it was the English horn beasts. I had a number of them in the case and I needed to go through them and see which were in the “we want to live!” category and which were in the “please, release us, we are cracking up” group. I even found a few that may have potential. But nothing that is in the “I am perfection” box. Oh well. I also worked on a few EH reeds that weren’t yet even in the “well, at least we crow” place. I kind of take my time on EH reeds. I’m just that way.

Then it was to oboe. I’d already gone through the stash; I’ve cleared out those with no hope for survival. I’ve put some in the “we don’t deserve to live but please give us a chance” area, and they will stay there. For now. (But I occasionally hold up a new reed and threaten those pesky undeserving fellows, “I’ll give you a few more days, but after that you’re history!”) Then it was time to work on the barely carved guys. And three at least tell me that they might be okay. Maybe, maybe, maybe.

I live in MaybeLand™ and MightLand™ and PotentialLand™ a whole lot of the time. I haven’t reached PerfectionLand™ … ever. Sigh.

But at least my driving decision might drive me to work on reeds more diligently. One can hope.


  1. Your last two paragraphs are surely the never-ending mantra and shared experience of EVERY oboist, or any double-reed instrumentalist!

    My heart goes out to you. All us brass players have are our LIPS — the mouthpiece stays the same (unless you change constantly, which many of us brass players DO!) — so what’s OUR excuse when things feel different whenever we pick up the horn?

    Because…there are ALWAYS variables. We are human beings, not machines.

  2. Ah, but a brass player once pointed to his lips implying that they were every bit as frustrating as a reed! And I must admit I haven’t a clue how you all do it. I tried. Once. That was enough.

    We can all complain. I just do it very, very well. 😉