I attended my seventh-grade daughter's band concert tonight. For those who have never attended a middle school band concert, let me attempt to sum up in one word the experience for you:
Imagine a symphony of rusty metal hinges being scraped across a gigantic steel chalkboard and you're on the right track.
Her seventh grade band played with the high school's symphonic band (the Big Dogs as far as high school bands go), so it wasn't quite the assault on the eardrums as, say, her fifth grade band concerts were. We were treated to a number of musical scores, varying from a complilation of Broadway tunes from Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat to a rather interesting musical adaptation of Edgar Allen Poe's "The Tell-Tale Heart". (And you thought the story was weird.)
In any case, with all sarcasm aside, I was rather impressed. Boston Philharmonic Orchestra they are not, but the kids played beautifully, cleanly and with a lot of passion. I actually got goosebumps during the last number, Hector Berlioz's "March to the Scaffolds" from his Symphonie Fantastique.
If I sound fairly knowledgeable about high school band music, it's because, you see, I was once a high school musician myself.
I know what you're thinking. No, I didn't get a lot of dates in high school.
BUT... I was an extremely talented flautist in my day and held the first chair flute position for most of my tenure in high school. You could say music was one of my passions when I was a student and I look back at the experiences in my high school music department with gratitude and fondness.
Running is one of my passions now (flawless segue, no?... and you thought there was no way I could tie all this into running). After "growing up" and taking on the role of being a responsible adult and all the priorities that come with it, it's a wonderful feeling to have a passion again in life that's all mine. Something that causes me to catch myself daydreaming in the middle of the afternoon or something that makes me so genuinely excited I actually get goosebumps in anticipation of doing it.
Now, if I were to ever find myself running to the majestic sounds of the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra in the background... well...
Ahem. I'll stop there. My mother reads this blog.