The many and various ways I pass the time now has a new addition. Usually it involves drinking coffee whilst sitting at a computer keeping in touch with chums, or sipping wine sitting on our tiny terrace catching the sun, and wondering what else I can do to avoid any cleaning or tidying or putting away of stuff and things that aren't even MINE. And now I am going to type this blog. Provided that doesn't become a chore as well, in which case...

Friday, 17 September 2010

Dee-licious, Dee-lightful, Dee-lovely, Dee-major.

Where was yesterday's blog? A follower has already challenged me thus. She supposed I was too busy and therefore would have more to write about today. Would that were so, but it was the sort of busy I can't really expand on, full of tasks I won't enumerate, because Thursdays is my main Our Ma day when I attend to many of the physical needs of The Husband's ninety-three-year old housebound mother who lives (thankfully, at this point in her life) very nearby. I do her food shopping etc, quite a few bits of other jobs, and they are not the stuff of blogs as it's more about her life than mine so not mine to write about.

I could have come home from choir and written about that as many amusing and droll things usually happen in the course of a rehearsal, as the conducter is quite a wag, for starters. But I didn't - to my eternal shame - go to choir. I didn't go last week either (the first practice of the term) because The Naval Nephew was visiting whilst on leave. Last week I sent an e-mail excusing myself to the alto section rep.

This week I just scived off.

Two reasons. The first is that the AGM was the first half of the evening's business and I know all about me and AGMs. We are best kept apart and made to sit in opposite corners of the classroom, AGMs and I, and not - as you may think - because I have a tendency to misbehave and disrupt proceedings. Far from it. I say very little, or even nothing at all, and keep my counsel. The problem is that AGMs have a terrible influence over me. They make me volunteer for things.

What's that peculiar psychological disorder when a patient presents with a paralysed arm for no apparent medical (eg neurological or rheumatological reason)? The therapists spend many hours listening, the shrinks dole out the pills, the treatment continues until at last a full range of movement returns to the arm, the hand can grip, the fingers and thumbs can twiddle again like good 'uns. The patient is deemed cured, whereupon in a matter of days he or she picks up a knife with the erstwhile errant limb and stabs to death the person in their life who has been really bugging them.

Well, my right arm is the opposite of that. It doesn't become paralysed to prevent my doing harm, it starts moving of its own accord to make me be a do-gooder.

A postion on the committee comes up which everyone else is justifiably reluctant to fill. I can't stand the lingering silence and feel sorry for the rest of the committee, that they will have a chair at the table conspicuous by its emptiness. In a ghastly dream-like state, before my conscious mind has chance to register the slightest twitch, UP goes my hand towards the ceiling. Entirely of its own volition.

Two or three years ago I accidentally found myself the Vice-Chairman of the choir I was in then as a result of being at an AGM and not sitting firmly on my hands. I've moved choirs since, and this time I deemed it better to stay away and not risk a repeat.

And then there is the second reason, the little matter of Vivaldi's Gloria in D major. I bet you know Vivaldi's Gloria in D major, even if you think you don't. People with no interest in pre-20th century music know the Vivaldi Gloria in D major. The Husband knows Vivaldi's Gloria in D major, he can "la" its opening bars quite convincingly, and why is that? Because it is so ubiquitous, so often performed, so frequently used as a backing track whenever there's a programme about church architecture or the history of Christianity. It's second only to the Hallelujah Chorus in how hackeneyed it is.

If I were a musicolgist I might be able to explain why D major is a very approachable key, very bright and shiny and positive and cheerful. As keys go it is as sweetly optimistic as Pollyanna. If it were a person you'd probably want to slap its silly face for simpering far too much.

So I can't sing it again, Dear Reader, I truly cannot. Not even though the other half of the concert is a brand new work by a very fine 21st Composer that the choir has commissioned, which will be rhythmically and tonally varied, a challenge to learn and bring up to the standard befitting a first performance. That I'd happily tackle, but not if I have to swim through the pond of slightly-too-sweet rice pudding that is Vivaldi's Gloria in D major to get to it.

So my sciving will have to become an opting-out. I'll have to tell the choir director I will rejoin in mid-October after this concert has been done and dusted, pleading personal commitments. And it is a personal commitment, done also for the sake of my loved ones, as I cannot expect The Husband, The Daughter (or any of my usual victims when it comes to selling my quota of tickets) to spend £18 each to hear something they can appreciate sufficiently by humming a bit of it in the bath. Followed by something they never heard and can't find a single tune in.

They've never done anything to me that awful to deserve it.

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