I became insane with long intervals of horrible sanity.
Edgar Allen Poe
The trouble with fighting for human freedom is that one spends most of one's time defending scoundrels. For it is against scoundrels that oppressive laws are first aimed, and oppression must be stopped at the beginning if it is to be stopped at all.
- H. L. Mencken
Many people would sooner die than think; In fact, they do so
What I have been telling you, from alpha to omega, what is the one great thing the sigil taught me — that everything in life is miraculous. For the sigil taught me that it rests within the power of each of us to awaken at will from a dragging nightmare of life made up of unimportant tasks and tedious useless little habits, to see life as it really is, and to rejoice in its exquisite wonderfulness. If the sigil were proved to be the top of a tomato-can, it would not alter that big fact, nor my fixed faith. No Harrowby, the common names we call things by do not matter — except to show how very dull we are ...
-James Branch Cabell
March 06, 2014 - 1:24 p.m.
OK I have to stop procrastinating and start writing. Sounds like a plan.
I spent most of the day yesterday grading my finite math class's test. I grade it one question, not one test at a time then tally up the grades at the end. My feeling was that people were doing terrible. My feeling was wrong. The median grade was an 83. That's excellent. But the mean was only 77, which is still good. The reason it was so much lower than the median is that the people who failed, failed by a big margin. There was only one grade between 44 and 60.
I only just started grading the Precalculus test. Things don't look good. Their problem is weakness in basic algebra. Many, perhaps most, do not know how to simplify
After grading I was good and good dinner. I'm so happy I'm back to eating at home most nights. I had blackened steak and roasted potatoes. I'd have preferred plantains but I didn't want to spend time shopping. So tonight I'll have a real Jamaican dinner, jerk chicken and roasted plantains. I might end up frying the plantains as they need higher temperature than the chicken.
After dinner I was off to the races, well Rockwood Music Hall to see Barnaby Bright. I was doing merch for them so I wanted to get their early. I did but not as early as I wanted to. The trip took 20 minutes longer than usual. When I got there they wouldn't let me in Stage 2 where he show was even though the previous act was over. I don't know what went on. There were people lined up to get in and the guy at the door told me to get on the line. I told him that I'm merching but he still wouldn't let me in and told me to go around the corner and enter through the back room. I have no idea what that was about or why He wasn't letting people in. It was ten minutes before showtime. And then even though it was a paid show they let the people for the 7:00 show stay there instead of making them leave like they usually do. Does anyone know what was going on?
In any event I went around the corner and went to the green room to find Becky and Nathan. They had already set up the merch in the back room and they gave me the bank. Then I headed into stage 2. By that time they let the line in. The room was packed but it mainly people who were there before I arrived. I walked around till I found Gene, Isabel, and Chris and joined them. So who else was there? I am going to get into trouble by forgetting everyone. There was Eliot, Gail, Kevin, and Linda for sure. I even have a pic of Linda sitting in the audience.
When I walked in the back room the first person I saw was Michaela Anne. She felt that she needed to tell me who she was. Now that often is true in Rockwood because it's so dark but I was close enough to know and in any event I could hear her. She was there to sing with Jesse Terry who was on after Barnaby Bright. We were then joined by Craig who played bass with Jesse.
This was a rare band show for Barnaby Bright. IT' clear when the do one that it's how they hear the music in their heads. The arrangements are natural, not forced. I haven't seen them in six months which is far too long. As a partial compensation they had a lot of new songs. They are quite a departure from the older material. I'm not sure how to put it. They are more up tempo and less haunting. One of the things I always love about them is that they are two of the nicest sweetest people in the world but when they write and sing they channel psycho killers. The new song were a departure but they were also great. There are many ways to make great music.
It is pretty much impossible for me to watch Barnaby Bright with friends and not have a great time. So guess what. I had a great time.
Now to slip back into teacher mode, but I'm now teaching proper concert going etiquette. Someone in the mezzanine took repeated flash pictures. I winced from the pain in my eyes each time. In a dark room a flash is unpleasant. Even with my eyes closed it hurt. If you want to take a few flashes OK but not one after another. And you shouldn't take even a few. This person had a much better camera than my cell phone an I can get decent photos with that. Learn how to use the camera, don't use a flash. A freebie tip; in low colored light like Rockwood shoot in black & white or sepia. Nothing wrong with that monochrome is beautiful.
After the show I ran to the back room and did merch. We did a slow but steady business. There was not the usual rush as the show ended. But I ended up selling through all of Jesse's show so I missed that. I am pretty sure I knew everyone in his band too. But I had a lot of fun talking to people. I finally met Kevin's wife Edith. See I remember her name! Is everyone impressed? I know I am. They kept on getting ready to leave then we'd start talking about something else. It's just like my family! No wonder I like them.
I ended up finishing after Jesse's show. Then I did my Sherpa duties and lugged things out to the car. I'm a full service band hanger-oner.
I better finish up. I once again forget to bring my lunch and have to buy it. I hate that. Well I'll walk by the post office and pick up multiple packages that should be waiting for me. So it won't be a major waste of time. When I'm done with school I want to just stop and buy jerk seasoning and head straight home to grade and cook dinner. I'm going to a late night two borough musical double header tonight. You'll hear about that tomorrow.
Brother Brothers in Arms - October 01, 2017
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