Veruca sweetheard, I'm not a magician.
I know that it’s been way too long since I’ve last written, and b/c of that I’ll probably ramble on for way too long and bore you all. Oh who am I kidding, maybe I should say bore the three of you that read this. :)
I listened to one of the coolest things in the world this past weekend. Granted Ems may be the only reader here who fully appreciates it just b/c she knows of my obsession (and b/c we’ve seen the show together 3 times now…) Alas I digress, I listened this weekend to the original tapes from the workshop version of RENT 2 years before it ever made it to Broadway. They were the actual tapes that Jonathan Larson sent to this theatre bigwig who decides whether or not to produce shows. Jamie that I work with is a huge RENT fan too, and when he started working here, Mary, another of my co-workers gave him the tapes. She’d gotten them b/c she’d worked for the theatre bigwig guy that the show was sent to. She’s not so much a RENT fan, so when she found out Jamie was, she gave them to him like it was no big deal. Anyway, it was crazy to listen to b/c compared to what you hear now when listening to RENT- it was pretty bad. Don’t get me wrong, some of it was still good. Some of the songs were just as they are now in the show, other songs didn’t even make it, some lyrically were slightly different, and then there were other random nuances that you’d only notice if you’d listened to the CD enough to have it memorized a million times over. (And it was my constant shower CD at 820, I can still hear Jenny laughing in my head when I’d knock on the wall of the shower during Light My Candle.) Anyway, it was still really amazing to hear what everyone first heard and fell in love with, to what it’s become. I’ll spare you all the details of what was different and what was the same… but for the record it was awesome.
I love my job. I know that you’ve probably heard me say that a million times over if you’re someone who talks to me on a semi-regular basis at all, but I just wanted to state again how much I love it. I love the people I work with. I love the people that I deal with. I love that I get excited about coming to work and don’t dread Monday’s as much as I used to. I love that it’s just as obvious to everyone else that I’m a much happier person. Talking to Michael after church on Sunday, he was asking how I was doing, and he just stopped and said “You sure smile a lot more now.” Not that it’s surprising that he noticed. He knew that I’ve been unhappy for a while now. He even told me he’d felt guilty b/c he knew I wasn’t doing what I wanted to do, but at the same time of course wanted me there. I think he probably knew more than most just how restless I felt. He always picked up on things that I never said, frustrations that I never voiced. He’s a good friend to have. I know he’s shocked that I’ve stayed at the church. He’s even told others that. I guess I’ve just found that for now, what I “prefer” in a church, musically and otherwise, isn’t nearly as important as the few people that I really love there. I want to give it a fair chance without working there to see how I feel about it before moving on. I’ve already realized that I enjoy it a lot more when I’m not there 40+ hours during the week. It’s been nice this summer too with JC out on sabbatical. So we’ve heard a lot of different people preach. The last two weeks have been fantastic. In fact, this past Sunday was probably one of the best sermons I’d ever heard. Jeff Vines who’s currently a missionary over in New Zealand. He didn’t use any notes, touched on scriptures from his Bible in hand, and simply told a story. I learn so much better from a narrative point of view than from probably any other method. And it all pretty much stemmed around apologetics- but it wasn’t the apologetics of this many people saw Jesus… it was more of think of evil and good this way- anyway, it was great. I love going to service and not knowing everything we’re singing ahead of time or exactly what the sermon says before I ever hear it preached. Nice change.
Went to a great concert the other day. Rufus Wainwright, Ben Folds & Guster. I really enjoyed it. I had hoped Pretty would be able to come with me, but he couldn’t get off work or out of rehearsal to be able to make the trip for the weekend so I just went by myself. Everyone who’d be semi-interested was busy, and my other friends aren’t much for that type of music. Anyway, it was really good. I missed the beginning of Rufus and I left not long after Guster started but it was still really good. I love both Rufus and Ben, and the fact that it was solo with just them and guitar or piano was fantastic. I’ve never done the concert thing alone before. I don’t go out and buy tickets for shows by myself, and I got these for free from work so I figured it was worth it. I also really hate when I don’t do things b/c I’d have to do them by myself. I mean, I’m 26 years old. I’m single. I’ve lived alone for several years now. If I can’t do things by myself at this point, then I’ve got some serious issues. (Other than the obvious ones.) :)
I guess I really haven’t updated at all about California. It was great once we finally got there. We had some ticket issues- God bless Alys- but we got there and once the sun came out we were happy. It doesn’t take much to entertain Jenny or myself. So with our yellow convertible appropriately nicknamed Sunshine, and a couple of cheap beach chair rentals, we had ourselves a vacation. It was fun and relaxing and overall a really great time. Conference wasn’t as good as I hoped. But maybe we’ve just been spoiled. I’d say that I have a bit of an issue at times when it comes to worship through music. My issue is that when it’s bad music, I have a hard time focusing. I know that it shouldn’t matter and I hate it about myself, but truth of the matter is, if the worship leader can’t seem to sing on tune then I really lose my focus. One of the bands that led is from the church there in California. I’m sure he’s a nice guy. I’m sure he’s sincere. When he sings straight as music is written, he at least sounds average. As soon as he deters from that at all though, as soon as he adlibs or tries to just follow the Spirit he completely lost all quality of tone. He was just flat out WAY OFF. So I’d find myself completely focused, singing along, and then wham- what in the world is that noise?! I know it’s all music to God, and it’s the heart that matters, and that maybe I’m the only person who struggles with this… don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that if you’re not a good singer you shouldn’t worship in song. I just have a hard time listening if you choose to LEAD. I think maybe your gifts lie elsewhere… Like I said, I know it’s not a good thing that I get distracted by it- and I didn’t say I liked this about myself. Ahh well what can you do.
I was thinking yesterday about how blessed I am by my friendships. A really close friend called just to see what I thought about something that happened to him and I realized how much I appreciated him. I probably don’t tell him that often enough. He’s engaged now and getting married in the fall so the relationship has changed (as it logically would) but I still really appreciate him and absolutely adore him. We’ve known each other for almost 8 years now, and been close friends pretty much from the start. Funny how you stay connected even when the middleman sometimes fell out of the equation. It’s crazy that we’ve never even lived in the same town. I’m looking forward to his wedding. I love the girl he’s chosen and I love to see that he’s happy in his life. It was an honor to be asked to be in his wedding. Means more to me than he probably knows.
Well what’s an entry without a little musical discussion. I’ve been listening to a couple of new things lately. One being Jamie Cullum’s Twentysomething
. In particular I love All At Sea. It's fun and jazzy. I’ve also been stuck on the Mindy Smith song “Come to Jesus” from the album One Moment More
. I have yet to listen to the rest of the CD b/c I’m stuck on this song, but from first skip through I’m not impressed. It was worth the purchase just for the one song though. It’s got an eerie sort of desolate feel to it. It’s great. And the last song is the Brad Paisley/Allison Krauss duet “Whiskey Lullaby”. Goodnight this is a SAD song- but WOW! I just love anything she sings and this song with all the minor chords and heartwrenching lyrics- wow. Anyway, so that’s been my recent music choices (recent as in within the last week).
Filming began on the remake of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory with Tim Burton and Johnny Depp. :) Even without music, with those two I'm pretty excited about it.
I think I should stop writing before I think of something else to ramble about. Maybe I should write more often so this isn't an issue.