high school memories.

Today I was running by the high school and I saw a familiar sight. Rows and rows of kids, lined up on a parking lot. It's marching band season! I couldn't help smiling as I watched them. Smiled even more when I heard them playing "Thriller" with half the brass section doing the thriller dance. It brought back a flood of memories.

Those who know me fairly well know I play the flute. I remember in 6th grade after deeming the clarinet was not duet-worthy with my twin's violin talent, starting to learn the flute. I picked it up quite quickly, I had a natural talent partly due to the fact I have freakishly long fingers and could reach all the keys easily. I really loved playing the flute. In junior high, band was still pretty cool to be in, and I was the top dog, the 1st flute. I played all the solos, I was the shiz. Our only marching experience was walking in a long straight line in the holiday parade, which we practiced doing for weeks. Our band uniform for parades was a maroon v-neck cardigan sweater (old man style that is cool now, but it was not cool back then.) that was always huge, with an embroidered logo on the back that we wore with a white turtleneck, white pants and white shoes. Even in back in 1997 that was not cool.

Anyways, playing the flute did bring me great things in life. I met one of my best friends because we had the same flute teacher in 8th grade. Becky, who would say things like beaut-i-mous! and brain fart! while we played in her room dedicated to her obsession to cats.

On to high school. I knew what was coming. Band was not cool in high school. I considered myself lucky because a)my flute could stealthily fit in my back pack b)I played volleyball (very cool) so I didn't have to be in marching band. I still loved playing the flute. I was in a flute choir taught by the flute professor at BSU, and I was in all the honor orchestras, which I loved. I love orchestra. The flutes play an important role. There only needs to be a few to carry over all those violins, and we were special in my mind. In band, it was all marches and brass-heavy stuff. flutes were like the magician's assistant, playing a pretty side role and slight of hand to the trumpets. I also did not escape pep band, which was the worst of all. We had to wear polo shirts and play at basketball and football games. I just wanted to sit with my friends. I would wear a hoodie over my polo, in our not air conditioned gym, and just sweat and sweat rather than let people see that I was the one who played "iron man" during the time out. After my sophomore year, I decided to quit band. I had to give up everything else, but I really didn't mind. Playing constant duets with my virtuoso sis kept up my skills.

I still have a place in my heart for bands. Tyler was a jock in high school and I taught him what a trombone was. In college I realized that playing "iron man" at parties was a big hit.


sassykather said...

When Alexander McCall Smith, author of "No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency" series, etc., came to Boise, he told about an orchestra he and his wife started in Scotland called something like "the really awful orchestra." It is made up of people who learned to play an instrument in school and, having them tucked away in their closets for years, pulled them out to play again. He definately shares your feelings. Does State College need a "really awful ochestra?

sassykather said...

I should add that "the really awful orchestra" couldn't be that awful as they toured in the US.

Kirt said...

Band/orchestra members may not be cool, but are needed in our world. So long as you aren't a band zealot (any more than a football zealot), there is life after band. I like Kathy's idea, because those "closeted instrument players" are not such die-hard musicians that they are annoying. It might be fun. And, your duets with your sister (and your solos) in Church and family gatherings were so enjoyable. I thank you for working hard to develop your talents.

taylor and laney said...

you taught Tyler what a trombone was? is this for real and please tell me that it happened as you drove past the band in State College PA.

Kenzie said...

for reals. It was at a BYU football game, and Tyler was like, what are those really big ones? (tuba) and I asked if he knew what a [trombone] was, and he had no idea. I was a little ashamed.

sassykather said...

He was a little preoccupied on previous occasion when the pep band was playing. I'm glad you've broadened his horizons.