an uncompleted draft about 8th grade band trip - entitled "what i learned at whistler"
- bumpy and winding roads are extremely nerve-wracking
- this mask is actually super good at blocking out bad smells (of which i encountered many on the whistler trip, including 40+ teenagers on a bus, vomit, manure, and the looming odour of chicken and poutine in the guys' hotel room)
i got some weird looks wearing this. and many people shouting Okay!
- plans and schedules are never concrete. they almost always change. what happened during the trip is a far cry from what the itinerary suggested.
- i cannot for the life of me pronounce the word itinerary
- true friends are patient when you mispronounce words and subsequently make too many attempts to correct yourself despite not knowing the actual correct pronunciation of the word
- menchies is a good breakfast and pringles bring out the worst in us
- because we took many group pictures, i learned that it's inevitable that you (i?) will always look worse than everyone else in a group picture. especially if the group picture has amazing photo quality and everybody that isnt you looks like a flawless chiseled being in the end result
- no matter who you are, where you are, or what you look like, a little kid will almost always ask you and your friends if you want to play manhunt with him
- circular swings are best in groups of 3 or 4
- this one is a hard one to explain. if your band director tells you to bring vibraphone mallets (soft) instead of bell mallets (hard), making the assumption that there will be no bells at the festival and only a vibraphone, DON'T BRING THE VIBRAPHONE MALLETS. it was a mistake to think that the largest high school concert band and choir festival in all of western canada would not think of investing in more than one mallet instrument.
- don't play bells with vibraphone mallets
- vibraphone is the quietest instrument a percussionist could ever encounter
- after months of preparation, big anticipated performances are kind of underwhelming. expecting a hefty and supportive audience at any sort of music festival is a mistake. at a festival, everyone is there for performance and adjudication, not to watch other performances. that's just not how it works
- speaking of percussionists, we're the most ignored section during a concert band adjudication. if you're a percussionist you'd be lucky if the adjudicator even glances at you.
- all adjudicator advice is about breathing and technique that doesn't apply to percussionists so we're kind of just left to fend for ourselves and fall asleep in the back while the rest of the band does breathing exercises
- a plus side to being a percussionist however is that while everyone else is lugging around gigantic instrument cases, all you need to worry about is your minimal bag of mallets and other percussion toys
- a hotel bed is so warm and inviting after a long day. almost more so than your own familiar bed
- i am the worst person to be roommates with
- half the chaperones don't even bother to enforce the rules they impose. i managed to sneak into the guys' room a crazy amount of times and no one did anything
- i learned many things about other people when we played the game sabotage but i will not include them here
- a stubborn guitar player who insists on letting everybody on the fourth floor hear his off-beat rendition of justin bieber's "love yourself" (and nothing else because he knows no other songs) will not comply with the demand to shut the fuck up
- sometimes it is hard to get a person to get the hint that no one likes them
- don't ever repeat the mistake of walking into the wrong hotel room and seeing the grade 9 boys half naked in the jacuzzi (note: the most hilarious part of this is when someone pointed at me and yelled WHY THE FUCK IS SHE IN HERE?)
- program papers are perfect for origami
- THERE ARE INSTRUMENTS THAT LOOK LIKE POOL NOODLES AND MAKE A WOOSHY SOUND
- i just had to do some extensive research to find these intriguing instruments and had to resort to even looking for a full score of the piece that they were used in and it turns out they're called whirlies!!! this is a bit of my history after the desperate search for the elusive whirly
the first result for "instrument you throw in a circle" was this
- it's really hard to sleep in a hot hotel room
- falling off of a really high hotel bed and landing on your head really fuckin hurts
- some people will go as far as to make a fake handle for a fake drawer in the bathroom
- it's not a good idea to fall asleep in a percussion workshop. now you may be wondering why, but just take into consideration the amount of demonstrations of various percussion instruments including crash cymbals and bass drum that occurred like 2 seconds after i drifted off into sleep
- when sitting down in a public area always have your bag in your lap and not hanging off the chair or on the floor because you might just be so tired that you forget the bag in the room and only realize that AFTER you've left and fully woken up
- don't pack the wrong black pants
- that cute asian pianist boy is too old for you
- you and your friend can fight over aforementioned pianist all you want but neither of you will ever have him
- don't be too nervous about playing onstage. you're going to do fine.
- don't glance into the audience to see if your friends are looking at you because one will be staring at the ceiling and another will be sound asleep
- as hard as it is, refrain from boasting when the adjudicator gives you nothing but praise
- don't tell anybody that you accidentally took a cabasa from the adjudication clinic and remain quiet when someone asks why there are two cabasas in the school band room
that is where it ended