Valentine's Day Debriefing

It’s been a very musical week, with a bit of Crime and Punishment thrown in.

Monday: Practice for Ancora’s entrance in the IDC Talent Show. Also on Tuesday and Thursday…when we get the chance. Musical readthrough as well.

Tuesday: Ms. Chew’s song, “(Waves) Collide”. Based on the Howie Day song “Collide”, Ms. Chew actually performed the song, singing and playing guitar with her wave-based lyrics. And she’s a good singer—but of course she already told me she was part of Testimony. In case you didn’t know, Testimony is the Stanford Christian a cappella group…the one that, last year, gave Ancora+3 the arrangement for Heaven’s Heart. Small world, as the cliché goes. Anyway, now the song is stuck in my head on and off all this week.

Wednesday: Valentines’ Day, a.k.a. Singles’ Awareness Day (SAD). Credit for that one goes to Thalia. Anyway, this is the day where a hundred (or so) choir people ditch are excused from class to deliver serenades across the school, interrupting classes and embarassing victims recipients. Cappella men sang the Divisi version of “Happy Together”, and that’s a success story. About a week after Mr. Aron gave us the song, I went home and plucked the Divisi arrangement out of their recording, then eight of us practiced it over the weekend, and Mr. Aron finally let us do it. The other groups were good as well, especially Cappella women with “The Boy from New York City Cupertino”. And apart from our myriad paid serenades (including Señora Mora, Mrs. Rocha, Ms. Ganske, and the tots in the tot center), the guys also got to give a few free extra serenades…to Mrs. Conrad, Kawano-sensei, and Ms. Chew. (The last was my idea…I guess after she had performed her song in Physics I wanted to show her, as another singer, what Cappella could do. Hopefully it was a good impression.)

And after the serenades, we were all exhausted…and had to go to the dance rehearsal for the musical. But we successfully choreographed “Luck Be a Lady” all the way through; we just need to practice now. I got my second wind for the choreography and sorta ended up leading it with a few others; most people were pretty exhausted (even the non-choir people ??). Of course, with a second wind, there’s a second collapse…consequently I got nothing done at home that night.

Thursday: Blitz practice during tutorial for Cappella’s performance tomorrow at Hyde, slow practice for IDC during seventh, then FULL VOCAL REVIEW for Guys & Dolls after school. All our songs were pretty good, and Kevin M. was spot-on for Luck Be a Lady. During seventh, though, there wasn’t much to do…I could have used the Nerd Herd around then. Too bad none of them appeared to still be at school.

Friday: I can see the future! Tomorrow Cappella leaves at the end of lunch to perform at Hyde (it’s a good thing Calc D was canceled for tomorrow because I wouldn’t have been able to make it). We’re singing “Over the Rainbow” for the Hyde choir, who’s been working on it as well. It’s a surprise, so if you have a sibling or other contact at Hyde, don’t say anything until tomorrow. After that we’re going back to school to work on Guys & Dolls some more. Long day, long week, then it’s BREAK!

And my first days of break are going to be the Berkeley S&D tournament, but that deserves another entry when it happens.

Hmmm…I only have a few interesting thoughts beyond life narration. I finished Crime and Punishment Wednesday morning. It was pretty good, but I wonder if it would have been as good if I hadn’t been in a class where we could have discussions about it. Looking back, though, the ending(s) was (were) kinda predictable…though whether from bad writing or good writing I’m not sure. (As a writer once again myself, I can sometimes see what has to happen for the right literary effect). And then there’s also the translator’s notes and the response journal prompts, which give a bit away as well. The epilogue was…odd…and I’m not sure I liked it, but it’s interesting to go beyond the typical ending of most books.

This was the first (and being a senior, the last) year I sent a serenade to someone. No big deal, I thought, and I even made a joke about it when she asked me if I sent it. (I wrote something to the effect of “I think you can guess who sent this” on it). Unfortunately it wasn’t our group that delivered it, so I didn’t get to see her reaction…should have self-requested. (Darn.) And yet just like Raskolnikov (*grin*) it kinda got to me, and apparently it showed, because later she said “nothing to do with serenades” when asking about something. :-/ I think that’s the right smiley/emoticon. …Well, that’s as close as this blog is going to come to the deeply personal entries that others have; nothing on this blog is going to be anything (that) embarrassing to me or to anyone else.

Today someone asked me why I have my hair so long (for a guy), which I’ve been asked a lot before. I replied “an experiment,” which is a perfectly good description of why I’m doing it. Not caring much about my looks lets me do things like this. Then he asked me if my hair was naturally wavy, which it is. Sometimes it’s unusual to be a guy with relatively long hair, but I guess that’s OK.

To close off this entry, let’s put a few things we serenaders didn’t really want to hear:

“Wait…that’s not my name” — yes, we actually gave a whole serenade to someone who wasn’t actually the recipient.

“How many serenades can you get?” (Kawano-sensei) — apparently she got one, then Yulian’s group from third period gave her one, then we gave her one.

“Oh, she’s in third period.” (Mr. Rosado) — after waiting an hour, we come back and end up singing to five people at once.

“This is so wrong.” (Ms. Chew) — making Kevin V. start laughing during his solo.