Saturday, April 28, 2007

Stop And Hear The Music

Today's "To Do List" had many things on it. I am proud to say that they are all still there. Though there were many things that I could have, maybe even should have, done, there was nothing that I had to do. I slept late - 9 is late for me - and then spent the afternoon at the Denton Arts and Jazz Festival before going to school at 8 to hear my students present their sophomore recital.

It was a beautiful day for an outside festival. The Civic Center Park was filled with music, artists, crafters, food, and people. It was a center of creative energy. Energy suggests motion, maybe even agitation. Creative energy often has the opposite effect. Listening to all the different music going on today had a soothing effect on me. The sounds varied; I heard everything from middle school choirs to bagpipes to show tunes to jazz. No matter the genre, I felt that I was being pulled to just sit and listen. To sit and listen, what a treat. Life today does not afford us as many opportunities to do this as we'd like or, more importantly, as we need. To be creative beings we need periods of calm and stillness. Listening to music is a great way to achieve this - especially when the music is live. My day of listening concluded in the concert hall by hearing my students perform some classical, some jazz, and some show tunes. Today was a nearly perfect aural experience!

I thought that it was interesting that the festival divided the "artists" and the "crafters". The artists were in the building and the crafters were outside in tents. Best I could tell, the artists were the ones who charged a bunch for their wares; they were the ones who try to make a living doing what they do. The crafters were the ones who seemed to be having fun, but not becoming rich doing their thing. Frankly, I would rather be a crafter - outside and having fun. Don't get me wrong, there was some beautiful "art" but, I enjoyed strolling through the crafter's tents. To me, their goods seemed more creative. I saw ceramic ocarinas shaped like all kinds of animals, beautiful handmade furniture, jewelry, pottery, and copperwork. It was a feast for the eyes.

Then there was the feast for the stomach. Nothing, except maybe the roasted corn on the cob on a stick, was even remotely healthy. To enjoy the taste sensations you had to abandon any notion of Weight Watchers or Atkins. You could have any kind of meat on a stick, popcorn, corny dogs, and anything, from rice to Snickers, fried. I could not pass up an unhealthy dose of fried food; I just had to decide what to put on the inside of my batter. I narrowed the choices to pickles, potatoes, and Snickers. I have had my share of both fried potatoes and fried pickles in my life so I decided to try something new - I got the Snickers. Snickers are my favorite candy bar so I had high hopes for this. It was served on a stick, coated with batter and drenched with powdered sugar. You probably do not have enough fingers and toes to count the calories even if you count by tens. BK and I did share it so I was only half bad! I must say that though I laud the creativity exhibited by frying a Snickers bar, it was not good. When the woman at the counter handed it to us, she said, "Wait at least two minutes before you bite in to it." Even after two minutes it was still mushy in the middle. It was the same disappointment experienced when your scoop of ice cream becomes a melted memory of its former self. I am glad that I tried it. Now I know - order the pickles!

So tomorrow comes with today's chores still to do, as well as a few more. That's OK. I had a great day today. The calm, the music, and my full tummy should carry me through tomorrow with no problems.