I have been extraordinarily tired so
Far this Lent. Ash Wednesday was three
Days ago, and already I’m waiting for
The resurrection, not so I can rejoice
In the greatness of the Lord, but
So I can have a cup of coffee, something
To wake me up from my lethargy.
This somehow feels appropriate.

So while I drink down water from
My pink plastic bottle to satisfy
My dry bones, I will wait for the Spirit
To come bring me life again.

mix tape monday

this week: songs for saturday morning.

1. Caedmon’s Call, “Stupid Kid” (Caedmon’s Call)
2. Adele, “Right As Rain” (19)
3. Lisa Hannigan and Damien Rice, “Get the Party Started” (Even Better Than the Real Things)
4. The Shins, “New Slang” (Garden State)
5. Andrew Osenga, “Piper At the Gates of the Radio” (demo)
6. The Decemberists, “The Perfect Crime #2” (The Crane Wife)
7. Wilco, “Misunderstood” (Kicking Televisions)
8. Paul Simon, “I Know What I Know” (Graceland)
9. Two-Faced Paul McCartney, “Zombies Walk!” (The King Mixer)
10. Andrew Bird, “Fake Palindromes” (The Mysterious Production of Eggs)
11. Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, “Dig, Lazarus, Dig” (Paste Sampler #41)
12. The Submarines, “You, Me & the Bourgeousie” (Paste Sampler #44)
13. Johnny Flynn & The Sussex Wit, “The Box” (Paste Sampler #46
14. Fiona Apple, “Extraordinary Machine”
15. The Beatles, “I Feel Fine” (1)
16. Ben Folds Five, “Army” (The Unauthorized Biography of Reinhold Messner)
17. U2, “Ultraviolet (Light My Way)” (Achtung Baby)

“you’re the reason the music’s in me…”

Between watching that video in the last post (see below, and seriously, watch it if you haven’t already) and having an interview with a man who’s been the band director at LBJ High School in Austin for thirty-four years, I’ve been thinking a lot about music and its power.

See, I sang in choirs from the time I was about four years old, and so I know that, when you’re a young person and you’re participating in the act of making music with a group of other people, there are on occasion moments of utter transcendence, when everything just clicks and you hit something magical. It may not always be technically correct or incredible (and God knows the choirs I sang in weren’t), but I think that’s part of the beauty of it, the humanity of it. Flawlessness is for recordings, not the live, raw moment.

Most of the great moments of elevation in my life involved singing in a choir, or at least with a group of other people. On the Metro bus in Washington DC (ninety-plus people all crammed in there), in the rotunda of one of the Smithsonian museums, in a rehearsal room before a concert, in a stairwell in my high school, in a mall, in a hundred-year-old church in Scotland–every one of those moments will be etched into my mind as long as I live. There is great power in being part of something that’s bigger than you are, in helping to create this piece of sound that will communicate great emotion and passion to the audience if you’re doing it right.

If/when I have kids, I hope they get the opportunity to be in band or orchestra or choir somewhere. All you guys that didn’t get to do that growing up, I’m really sorry. You missed out.

And when the Bible tells us that one day we will all be singing together with the millions and millions of people that have gone before us, singing the highest thing that can ever be sung, well–that will be joy indeed.

mix tape monday

This week: Music for your commute on Monday morning. It takes me about 30 minutes to get to campus on the bus and then walk to class, so here goes:

1. Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova, “This Low” (The Swell Season)
2. Bon Iver, “For Emma” (For Emma, Forever Ago)
3. Paul Simon, “Under African Skies” (Graceland)
4. Radiohead, “15 Steps” (In Rainbows)
5. Bruce Springsteen, “Into the Fire” (The Rising)
6. Thievery Corporation, “Lebanese Blonde” (Garden State)
7. Ben Folds Five, “Fair” (Whatever and Ever Amen)

time: 31:54

whoa, wait, i have a blog?

So I haven’t posted in over a week. Sorry. Class and work keep a girl busy, plus I have the added excuse this week of food poisoning (which kept me out of commission for a couple of days and was less than pleasant). And, truthfully, I don’t have a whole lot of things to say…but I’d better switch topics before this ends up being a “this is why I haven’t been posting” post.

I had the great opportunity on Monday night to interview my friend Erica for two hours about her childhood–it’s all been recorded and I’m working on transcribing it, although this might take a while since it’s already taken me about three hours to get through the first forty minutes or so. There’s something almost intimate about getting to sit down with someone and get them to open up part of his or her life to you, especially someone who’s a friend but one that you don’t know all that well. I highly recommend it, especially with a friend who’s a good talker. I’ll bet you find out some things you never heard before. (I have a good story about Erica involving beer cans, but I’ll save that one.)

There, that’s your assignment for the week. Try it out.

I’ve also been learning a lot about my own conversational habits while listening to the recording–namely, I say stuff like “nice” a lot, I use “like” as a verbal tic more often than I’m proud of, and I sound like a dude on tape. Also, I’m acutely afflicted with what the French call espirit d’escalier, which is when you come up with a witty remark too late for it to be of any use. Happens to me all the time, alas. Hopefully I can get over that.

What else–oh, I got to go to Waco for an engagement for my friend Ashley and her fiance Sam (or, as we are apparently putting it, her “finance”). Saw some old friends, met some new people, worked out some logistical stuff (I’m singing in the wedding and she’s put me in charge of the music). So now I’ve got to figure out what to sing and, more importantly, what to wear. 😉 But at least I have a while to figure this out…

I guess that’s all I have. Next week is going to be somewhat insane, classwork-wise, so you might not hear from me again for a while. Keep it real, folks.

Actually, let me leave you with this, because I’ve kind of fallen in love with this song:


Inspired by Teacher Dave’s post, this week’s topic is thirteen things that make you happy.

1. Little kids doing funny things at weddings.
2. Soccer (or, more properly, FOOTBALL) fans in other countries.
3. The smell of hot milk. I don’t know what it is, but the smell’s oddly comforting to me for some reason.
4. The fact that my chosen field is somewhat conservative in nature, and yet it attracts all sorts of liberal freaky people.
5. Robots. Yes, really.
6. Awards shows. Except maybe the Grammys. But I love stuff like the Oscars and the Tonys.
7. The Strand Bookstore in New York City–18 miles’ worth of books, people. Incredible.
8. Losing all sense of time while reading or watching or hearing a good story.
9. Knee socks. If I could find some way to wear them during the summer and not look/feel ridiculous, I would.
10. Revolving doors! There’s one at the main library at UT, but at the moment it’s broken, which is kind of depressing.
11. Holding babies.
12. Big groups of people (500+) singing together.
13. Getting stuff in the mail, even if it’s something like the electric bill.

mix tape monday

This may be easier for some of us than others, but: Songs from musicals. Limit of two songs per musical.

1. “Lullaby of Broadway” (42nd Street)
“When a Broadway baby says good night/It’s early in the morning/Manhattan babies don’t sleep tight until the dawn…”

2. “You Could Drive a Person Crazy” (Company)
“You impersonate a person better than a zombie should”

3. “Bless the Lord” (Godspell)
“He will not always chide/He will with patience wait/His wrath is ever slow to rise”

4. “A Little Priest” (Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street)
“Looks thicker–more like vicar.” “No, it has to be grocer; it’s green.”

5. “Generations” (Children of Eden)
“Son follow father, birth follow birth/Spread the people all over the earth/Mama tell daughter how boy follow girl/Spread the people all over the wide wide world”

6. “One By One” (The Lion King)
Translated from the Zulu: “Hold on tight, my people/Don’t get weary/Don’t lose your strength”

7. “96,000” (In the Heights)
“It’s silly when we get into these crazy hypotheticals/You really want some bread, then go ahead, create a set of goals/And then cross ’em off the list as you pursue ’em/And with those 96 I know precisely what I’m doin’…”

8. “Singin’ In the Rain” (Singin’ In the Rain)
“I’ll walk down the lane with a happy refrain/Just singin’, just singin’ in the rain…”

9. “One Song Glory” (Rent)
“One song to redeem this empty life/Time flies, and then no need to endure anymore”

10. “Shadowland” (The Lion King)
“And where the journey may lead me, let your prayer be my guide/I cannot stay here, my family, but I’ll remember my pride”

11. “Sunrise” (In the Heights)
“So how do you say ‘help me’?” “Ayúdame…” “And how do you say ‘promise me’?” “Prométeme…” “Promise me you’ll stay beyond the sunrise.”

12. “All Good Gifts” (Godspell)
“We have no gifts to offer for all Thy love imparts/But that which Thou desirest, our humble thankful hearts”

13. “Sorry-Grateful” (Company)
“Good things get better, bad get worse/Wait–I think I meant that in reverse”

(*Random note on this one–the first guy singing reminds me of my friend Marti’s dad, and it freaks me out.)

14. “Without You” (Rent)
“The stars gleam, the poets dream/The eagles fly without you/The earth turns, the sun burns/But I die without you”

15. “Louder Than Words” (Tick, Tick…BOOM)
“Why would we rather put ourselves through hell/Than sleep alone at night?”