01. August 2009 · Comments Off on Zheng Cao · Categories: Ramble

This story is about Zheng Cao (an opera singer I heard this year in San Francisco Opera) and her fight against cancer. In addition, you can read her own blog. I had heard that she had been diagnosed with stage four cancer, and it was all over her body. I had not heard the more optimistic news, and it’s wonderful to read!

01. August 2009 · 4 comments · Categories: Ramble

Today I only had one student, the first canceling shortly before the lesson due to illness. I recently heard from a music instructor (NOT oboe) who said her students rarely get ill because she charges by the month and if they get sick they have to reschedule. I just can’t operate that way; it seems, to be honest, a bit unkind. It also seems unwise, as I’d hate for ill students to show up to lessons. So the student canceled, and I was grateful, as I don’t like getting sick!

After teaching I readied myself for a former student’s wedding. I put all the Celtic music I found into a nice folder (prepared for wind, although the only troublesome thing about the location was the little fly that kept bugging me) and was dressed and ready to go, thinking it was too bad I’d miss our new furniture that was scheduled to arrive between 1:45 and 3:45. About when I was going to head on out I heard a loud truck in front and … well how ’bout that?! … the furniture came a bit early. Nice! I was able to get a quick look at it, sit on the couch, and then it was time to race out.

The wedding was at Sanborn Park, and it was very sweet and touching and all the things weddings should be. Seeing younger people so in love can really melt my heart. I love playing for these things, and I love doing a bit of improvisation as I do this. It makes me feel nearly creative. During the reception I yakked with a younger couple and — get this! — her father was the bass trombonist in the L. A. Phil for something like 35 years. (That’s “big time” and I’m “small time”, by the way; just so you know!) Then I was talking about our principal trombonist in SSV, since I know he’s from SoCal and thought maybe she knew the name. His first name is Steve, and she first thought I was talking about a different Steve. Well, no, I wasn’t talking about “her” Steve, but then I said, about “her” Steve, “But his wife (a flutist) is playing right now in Merola with me!” Yes. Really. This is small world of a musician. Nearly every time I talk music with someone who is involved in music or has a family member involved, we can find some sort of connection that isn’t all that distant. I love that about our world. (Of course it also means one must always watch what one says about others, but that’s probably a good thing, you know?)

And now I’m watching the Giants play. It’s 2-0, good guys, and it’s the bottom of the 8th. I’m hopeful, but I’m not comfortable, to be sure.

[time lapse as I’m making sure I’m making sense above means that … ta da! … GAME, GIANTS!]