Monday, November 12, 2012

A Performance Of Notes

The Pony is performing in a patriotic concert tonight. That's where I am. Not here. Fooled you, huh?

As a member of the Newmentia concert band, The Pony was issued a uniform last week. I daresay his pride approached that of the veterans when they first received their military uniforms. He has black slacks, a crisp white shirt, and a gray patterned vest with a shiny back. I kicked in some black socks, and The Pony picked out a pair of black shoes. He will be sliding his trombone in style this evening.

High school band can be a scary place for a freshman. That's what I've heard from my students over the years. Thank the Gummi Mary, The Pony is not so diminutive as to be stuffed into an instrument storage cabinet. That was the fate of one young lad a while back. Yes, I fear the shenanigans surpass the percussion section making walrus tusks with their drumsticks.

I remember the percussion section from my own high school band. Those kids marched to their own drums, by cracky! The freshman bass drum player acted like he was attempting to crack open a steel pinata holding a lifetime supply of Slim Jims. Our director yelled at him daily. "STEVE! The war is over!" None of us really understood that remark. But all of us except Steve knew that it meant he was too loud.

Yes, Mrs. Hillbilly Mom was in the band. First clarinet. Not only a member, but band president. The clarinets were the red-headed stepchildren of the band. Relegated to marching at the very back in parades. The showy brass section got the good spots up front. And there WE were, bringing up the rear. Behind even the percussion section. The clarinets were the harried moms of the musical army. Drop a flip-over piece of music? Drop a drumstick? One of your spats fall off? "Pick it up! Pick it up! Pick it up!" Everyone else marched on by. Stepped over it. But we, the last echelon, were expected to break stride, bend over, and pick it up. We were The Cleaners. Like Newmans for the muffin stumps.

The Pony will be in the front lines when he marches in the school carnival parade in May. Lucky dog.


Sioux said...

I remember the days of marching band so well. (My son was a trumpeter, and the lead solo.)

Enjoy The Pony while he's still in pastures close to home. Too soon, that won't be the case...

Hillbilly Mom said...

We are down to four trumpeters this year. It's shocking. Last year, there were nine. It's the scheduling conflicts that get us. The honors classes mess up the fine arts. Plus, too many required credits leave little time for fun electives.

I figure The Pony has one more year to enjoy his tromboning. Then it will be a mean feat to fit band into the schedule.

I feel bad for the musical kids, who would like concert choir and swing choir and concert band and jazz band. Alas, there is no Hillmomba High School for the Performing Arts. No FAME for Hillmomban youth.

Kathy's Klothesline said...

What, no Glee!!!!! I do not recall any singing in the halls of my high school. I do remember band members, though. My only musical ability was turmimg the dial (long, long ago) on the radio.

Hillbilly Mom said...

We DO have Glee. They wear T-shirts with sayings like, "Warning. I might spontaneously burst into song."

For that reason alone, we do not speak of Glee.