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So we have the new kitchen floor in, and it's time to clean the carpets. They took one heck of a hit when we were down to concrete and leveling compound on the kitchen and dining room floor. It seems my life is just nothing but moving furniture some weeks!
In other news, it's a new week and the weather is still warm here. They're talking rain by the weekend, but hey... I'm hoping for some prep time this week so I can hammer at the garage; it's warm enough that Shelley needs to have the van inside to keep it cool.
Psst. Guys... It's Valentine's Day...
Yeah, Target or Hallmark for cards (although your local grocery store may do you okay). Kiss off See's; it'll be jammed with others like us. Starbucks is out of everything (well, except that Stones album, but that's kinda' sorta' limited). Flowers? Hey, the guys on the street corners are your only hope.
Now about that concert... Sure, I don't normally do music reviews (books are more my style), but this was a good night out for Brad and me (Daniel and Shelley opted for having their eyes poked out with needles rather than attend), and was his first exposure to a full symphonic experience.
The program ran for over two hours and frankly I was hoping he could hold on through the first two pieces until we could get to the piece I wanted him to hear. ...and I was worried a bit when at one point he asked, "Dad, just how long are these songs?" ...but that turned out to be more in awe of the Philharmonic's endurance (something he's never seen at his level) than from boredom.
...and their 'endurance' <g> and style were more than adequate for the tasks at hand. They led with An American in Paris (yes, he caught the 'horns' of the taxis) and followed it with Gershwin's Concerto in F. I'd forgotten that I knew the second piece, but it came back as soon as the orchestra and the soloist started into it. Side note: the soloist noted in the program notes (that link will likely resize your browser window) developed pneumonia and was unable to travel in from Italy; a frenzied weekend and Monday produced James Giles to arrive Tuesday to definitively show how a very difficult piano piece should be handled. Wow.
Once we made it to intermission, I set Brad up by telling him that the clarinet solo for the next piece, Rhapsody in Blue, was sometimes one of the best examples on non-classical clarinet to be found outside of pure jazz. Currently he's cutting his teeth on The Phantom of the Opera and Lord of the Rings, but they both lean to the classical side. ...and I could only hope the artist at this performance could generate a little something special; all too often the opening lines are a tepid taste of what should be the defining moment for the flavor of the entire piece...
Well, now... This gal flat took that glissando and let it wail across the podium and out into the crowd! ...and set the stage for a very nice duel with the lead trumpet throughout the piece. Oh, man. Brad was just stoked listening to it all. (Yes, she's visible in the photo on the blog; that's her in the second tier down from the percussion, in the middle just below the bassoon player.) ...and yes, I've printed out the lessons from her site and Brad's added them to his practice sessions this week. Pretty cool, -eh?
Back to the show? Okay <g>: Once Rhapsody... was over, they pianist left the stage and the orchestra moved into Porgy and Bess, A Symphonic Picture complete with a banjo player sporting a straw hat. This piece is a compilation of the music from the opera and flows very well with the rearrangement. ...and with the temperatures up locally, Summertime was especially haunting.All in all this was a good night out for the two music lovers in the family (and two thousand others). I'll be looking forward to other shows I can take Brad to as the orchestra and venue are simply superb.
Darn, that's two, maybe three medical posts I need to get going on now. I have one roughed out on cardiac treadmills and the radioisotope version and what that all means, and another I can do on AEDs and why it's handy to know where they are locally. Maybe over the weekend? If anyone has any specific questions in these areas, just drop me a line and I'll work them in...
A day off... No work, no Net, no schedule...
Oh, I did take the kids to school since Shelley was working, and napped a bit because it was another sleepless night, and cemetery crawled for a while at a nice little place on the way to the hills (sure, pics in a bit) and froze my tail off watching Brad play in a volleyball tournament (yep, pics for the grandparents and other interested parties too). ...but even that was all low pressure, get there early, take my time and then come home and read a bit all evening type stuff.
Today will be a bit of a contrast to yesterday: I have a worklist lined out to start on the garage. Yep, it's time to restore some semblance of order after the water heater 'flood'. Yes, the dining area still needs baseboard, but since it rained much of yesterday afternoon and there's more forecast for today (with snow flurries?!? No kidding!) I figure painting base is out of the question.
...and the kitchen is under control with new flooring there and in the dining area, a replacement dishwasher, a new faucet with geegaws galore and even a slide out bin in the storage area under the sink. Yep, the base can wait while I work on getting Shelley's van back in the garage. ...and since things are 'open' along the one wall, this will be a good time to rewire some of the bench area and reset the music system out there.
A bit of a 'delayed post' here; Sunday's plans changed a bit. I'll get back here Monday with some pictures after we get the boys off on a day trip...
I think the entire school is a little too caught up in the projects for this Spring's "Open House": the wine tasting party we attended was set up as a 'Science Fair Project'!
...and as if that wasn't bad enough, someone brought in a 'ringer'!
...but when all was said and done, things really came out in an interesting fashion: it turned out that two couples had brought the same white wine (there were two 'divisions' to the evening: light foods with the white wines and chocolates and other desserts with the reds); when the two wines were compared on the 'data board' they were marked up very similarly by almost everyone.
Yep, we had a nice evening out with some friends and had a good time trying out the various combinations of food and drink. That's not something we get to do all that often...
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