Sunday, August 29, 2010

Give me pills!

August and September are notoriously unpleasant for those of us with allergies. Every year around this time, there comes a day when I find myself absolutely miserable, eyes watery, kleenex massacred all over the floor, breathing becomes a chore.

Thank you, Autumn.

Most days Zyrtec keeps my allergies in check, but last Thursday life was unbearable. Unable to focus at work, I called the nearest clinic and explained I needed an appointment with any doctor, and I needed it as soon as possible, because I needed prescription-strength allergy pills.

Going to the doctor's office is usually not high on my list of "fun things to do". But I've had allergy prescriptions in the past, so I knew there was a solution, the only thing yet between me and relief was getting the Doc's signature to bring to the pharmacy (okay, electronic signature, but you get the point).

Meanwhile, going through my mind was, "yes, Doctor, I weight 145 pounds, I don't smoke, no fever, just give me the pills!"

Don't worry, Mom, I was nice about it.

In reality it was under and hour (though in "I'm-not-feeling-well-give-me-pills" mode it felt much longer) and I was on my way home with an Rx of Fexofenadine, a nasal spray, and a steroid to help kick-start the feeling-well-ness. I'm pretty sure the steroid is what gave me a nasty headache yesterday, but at least I can breathe again and don't look like I've been crying all day. So I think that's progress, right?

Thursday, August 26, 2010

I fought the caulk and the caulk won

Who knew my Mom had super-human strength?

Well, it turns out she doesn’t, but she knew a secret I didn’t: caulking one’s bathtub goes much much easier when you use a caulking gun, rather than struggling to squeeze caulk from the tube by hand. Which is how I started my weekend a few Saturdays ago.

It was a bright and sunny day, the perfect day for being productive. I retrieved the tube of caulk from downstairs, found a scraper thingy (technical term) to help remove the old caulk, and went at it. Several hours later, most of the old caulk was gone. Mostly. Sort of. It’s harder than it looks! (or I made it harder, one or the other)

And then the real battle began. After a couple more hours squeezing the darn tube with limited success (except bursting open the back end of the tube), I finally broke down and called Mom to ask what she knew that I didn’t.

That’s when she told me about the gun.

Now, I can’t claim life was “easy” after that, but at least I could make progress.

The caulk is done now. Lumpy, kind of jiggy-jaggy, and varies from paper-thin to burrito thick, but it’s done.

And I will never be hired as a professional plumber, I can tell you that right now.

Friday, August 20, 2010

I Look Different!

For several weeks I've desire to dye my hair again. A couple years ago I went red (and pulled it off rather successfully, I might add), so this time I decided to go the opposite direction: blonde!

My Mom's hairdresser Denise did a fantabulous job crafting my hair into a golden marvel. I didn't know exactly what I wanted, but this turned out better than I expected! Only once so far has it caught me off-guard seeing my reflection.

The best part, though, is probably the reactions. Here is a sampling of some more colorful thoughts from Facebook friends:

What happened? Did your shirt crawl up and take over the top of your head?

Auditioning for Ronald McDonald, or just preparing by getting in the mood for the big movie screening on Saturday? :)

Is this from all the [computer] re-imaging? Some kind of waves coming out of the machines? This sounds like a workers comp claim.


wow! the new party look!!

That's quite an iPhone app!!!!

KILL IT WITH FIRE Oh it's just your hair?

So yeah, I'm enjoying blonde life.

The next hair color (after this) will either be orange, or be put to a vote on Facebook.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

First time in Jacob's Well band!

Today I played in the Jacob's Well band for the first time! Trial by fire, but I'm pretty sure I didn't completely suck...

I've served as a sound engineer at JW since February, at least once or twice a month, and in that time been blessed to meet most of our wonderful musicians (the worship team has over 30 people who rotate each week). Over the months I've asked if I could eventually slip into the band rotation, and this week I was invited to trade in my headphones and join them up front.

I mentioned today was "trial by fire". I had several factors working against me today:

- No mid-week rehearsal. Normally the band rehearses on Tuesday night, giving plenty of time to work through any kinks or trouble spots in the songs. But Nate, the leader, is a brand new Daddy, so there was no rehearsal this week (quite understandably!)

- Ears. I've never used in-ear monitors before. They're sweet, but the Aviom console to mix what I was hearing in my ears had no labels, so it was hard to figure out which channels I needed to turn up to hear what I needed to hear. (Nate graciously ran through the list slowly so I could write it down before we got going too far).

- Click. I've also never played to a click. Though now I don't know how I'll ever play without one. So this isn't a bad thing, it's just "one more new thing" thrown into the bag.

- You've Got a Friend In Me. Jazz? How the heck do I play jazz? And the song's in Eb (half a step lower than standard guitar tuning, which makes it much more difficult to play). Fortunately, I have a "backup" performance guitar, so I re-tuned that and then switched between the two guitars between songs. Made life much easier. Relatively. Not only are the chords crazy, but the changes go crazy fast.

- Most importantly: I haven't played in a band for a long time. It's been well over a year since I played publicly with a band. I don't get stage-fright, the audience doesn't bother me, but anticipating keeping tempo with 3 other instrumentalists had me worried. (unnecessarily so: that click is awesome)

So I survived. I have room for improvement (always will), but I didn't suck, so all in all off to a good start. And it means I can continue breaking a stereotype by crossing the boundary between tech and musician. Frankly I think it makes me better at both jobs, because as a Tech I know what the musicians need/want/expect, and as a musician I have a solid grasp on what the tech may need me to do.