oh my!

Beirut is dripping—dripping, I tell you—with talent.

Here’s a little taste of their goodness. (AP Photo/Dima Gavrysh)

I was lucky enough to attend the 8-piece band’s show last night where, by the end of the two encores, fans were mock-waltzing (since this generation doesn’t know how to properly waltz) just because the vibe was that upbeat and happy. I know I had a grin on my face.

But let me get back to that talent. These kids were playing every instrument you could imagine: guitar, ukulele, mandolin, violin, stand-up bass, bass guitar, accordion, drums, tenor saxophone, clarinet, trumpet, French horn, a couple of other brass horns I don’t know, xylophone, keyboard, tambourine…and those are just the ones I can remember. One kid in particular, we referred to him as ‘the big guy with the beard,’ played most of the instruments—several per song—and traveled the stage according to band placement and sound quality. I was very impressed, to say the least, and I couldn’t help but think of just how proud their parents must be!

And let me just interject here, as a former middle-school clarinetist myself, last night’s show was a clarinet-fest! Yippee! The two opening acts, The Apple Miner Colony and The Bruntettes, both featured that sexy blow-stick. It almost made me want to play again…but I’d much rather listen these days than play.

Although the show was in the lovely Regency Grand Ballroom, there were far too many sound and lighting issues to allow the show to be as amazing as it could have been. I felt terrible for The Brunettes whose set was cut short and marred by sound difficulties. I thought their music was really good, but we only got to hear 3 or 4 songs. And the house lights actually came all the way on twice during Beirut’s set! Unacceptable.

But I really did leave with a smile.

let me count the ways

I am really good at coming up with ways to be passive aggressive. Okay. I’m really good at coming up with ways of being plain aggressive, too. But I normally try to be as rational and understanding as I can. And that usually means beating down all those great ideas and letting that water roll right off the back.

I truly like to keep the Golden Rule in mind when dealing with others—especially others that are special to me. But sometimes, just sometimes, doesn’t it feel sooo good to give in to that little devil on the shoulder?

Living with roommates opens up a cornucopia of opportunities. I admit to participating in some PA activities around the house. And some of those activities were even in partnership with other roommates. Mind you, we’re all still pretty pleased with each other in our living situation. It’s just that everyone has their little quirks that seem to glare here and there.

Family is another easy target—easier than roommates—but somehow way more sensitive. I’d like to think I’ve matured enough to steer clear of the family PA shenanigans. That, and living far enough away from them all helps, too.

And then there are the relationship digs. Here is where the ice becomes thin and treacherous to tread. But I confess, my most beautiful and purely poetic PA feat was executed in the relationship realm—only when the relationship was kaput, of course. It was like a finely executed Rube Goldberg set-up where everything fell right into place, almost as if I weren’t even trying. Like I said, pure poetry, simply brilliant. Is it so wrong to be extremely proud of such a thing?

Yes, I know it’s not a good thing. And, yes, I try very hard to turn the other cheek when I so badly want to flash both of them at some folks. I know that it’s usually me that retains the psychological damage in the long run. And I’m working through it all the time.