It was hot as hades on the bus, and although I myself was in shorts and a t-shirt, I started sweating just looking at the lady who took the seat in front of me—she not only had on a heavy winter coat, but a hooded sweatshirt on underneath it. After a while, she did at least pull the hood down.
I just don't understand.
I had two work meetings today, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. The morning one was our regular weekly one-hour department meeting, where the food situation was sparse consisting only of some leftover store-bought cookies from yesterday's Cybersecurity Day event.
The afternoon meeting was our 1.25-hour (don't ask) meeting, and when the agenda item of FAQs Update came up, I took a risk that someone in the room would get the allusion and reported, "I'll defer to Karen in Richard Carpenter in my status update and say, 'I've only just begun.'" Surprisingly, laughter all around.
My friend @abbyladybug posted this picture of me on Facebook. At first I thought it was from @hughlh and @renee79's wedding this past weekend, but then I realized that what I'm wearing in this picture is not what I wore to that wedding.
I received two free tickets to NC State's Wind Ensemble tonight, and I took Joe along to the event. We thoroughly enjoyed it. The "theme" of the performance was "Voodoo," being around Halloween and all.
The song after the intermission was quite interesting. They turned off all the lights in Stewart Theater and the ensemble played spooky music, flashed various lights on and off casting shadows on the stage and on the performers (such as the old flashlight under the chin trick), and some of the performers actually came up into the audience and stood in front of some empty seats in some of the rows and alternately played their instruments and screamed to scare people. The conductor had a glow-in-the-dark baton with which to conduct, and at the end when the lights came on, he was covered in a black cape and hood and had a skeleton mask over his face. Fun.
Observations I made during the evening:
- If you stop doing most things for years and years and years, chances are when you pick it up again, things are going to be fairly different. I'm thinking of playing video games, for instance. I mean Guitar Hero is not your father's Pong. However, as I watched the clarinetists, I thought, "Their fingers are doing the exact same thing to produce the exact same sound that mine did over 35 years ago." I guess that's why it's called classical music.
- Two players in the ensemble tapped their foot to the beat throughout entire songs. I'm sure there were others, but those were the ones I could see.
- The sheet music was not "green"—that is, it was printed one-sided, which I could tell because instead of flipping the pages, they slid them from right to left placing them on top of the previous pages.
- There were three different xylophones of varying sizes, and I wondered if all three were really necessary.
- One lady in the saxophone section wore sunglasses throughout the evening. A careful watch of her during the intermission produced no obvious sight impairments. I dubbed her Josianna Feliciano.
- The redness in the bass saxophonist face was directly proportional to the amount of wind he forced through his instrument.
- As I watched the bass drum player hold that big, bulbous, furry mallet and pound furiously on cue, I wondered how "good" you could get at such an instrument. I mean what exactly would differentiate a "first chair" bass drummer from, say, a "third chair?"
- One of the percussionists—I believe there were four, three guys and one girl—must have been the overall best, as he played the cymbals, the snare drum, and even replaced the guy playing the tympanies for one piece.
- Why do the sexes tend to migrate toward certain instruments? All of the flutists except one, were women. All of the euphonium players were men. Joe posited that finger size might have something to do with it in some cases. I know I'd have a hard time playing the piccolo with my paws.
- Looking at the guys in the ensemble, I played "Athlete or Musician" (à la Gay or Eurotrash) with each one, wondering, "If I saw this guy on campus, would I guess that he was an athlete or that he was in the band?" Fun with stereotypes.
After the concert, Joe and I stopped at Snoopy's, where it was $.99 Hot Dog Day, and we each had a couple of dogs and a soda. We stopped by Helios after that to kill some time but instead were killed ourselves by the annoying parking situation there and it being jam-packed, since it was Half-Priced Wine Night.
We went to Legends, where we paid only $2.00 to get in (reasonable for a change), played one game of pool, and then Trivia with Mary K. Mart hosting. It was actually a little more fun than I anticipated it would be. There were five rounds with cash prizes being awarded to the winner of each round and then another bigger, cash prize to the person with the most correct responses across all five rounds.
Three people got a perfect score on the 5th round, of which I was one. However, I lost the "playoff," which amounted to the three of us picking a number between one and 40 and coming closest to the number that Mary drew out of a hat.
The categories of the first two rounds were Potpourri or Anything Goes or Miscellaneous, however you want to characterize that. The category for the third round was Wonder Woman, about which I knew nothing, but did learn that the accessory that allowed her to breathe in outer space was her earrings. The category for the fourth game was, "Match the Boy to the Boy Band," another category about which I knew zilch. The fifth and final round brought the category of "Cities Around the World," which is the one in which I got a perfect score, the trickiest question involving knowing that the Spanish Steps are neither in Madrid nor Barcelona (Discuss!), but in Rome. And I only knew that because I'd stood on them.
Joe actually came in second for overall most correct answers across the five games. He also won one of the rounds, but lost in the playoff. Always a bridesmaid, never a bride.
At home, I read some more of Big Machine, as it's due tomorrow, and I'm doubtful that I'll be able to renew it yet again.