OK, a million things have happened this last week, and I’ve been too Rurouni Kenshin to talk much about them, so let’s see if I can Rurouni Kenshin… er… catch up on them now.
To start out with, cantata. Last week’s first practice wasn’t as high school reunion as it usually is, and consequently not as obnoxious. Then, mom’s changed some of the really difficult parts in the 7/4 piece, and (though maybe just because I’ve sung this one before) it was discernibly easier to get than the previous time we did this particular program.
I feel like there’s a lot of second soprano in this cantata, which is always gratifying. I’m still not always very good at finding the second soprano part, but it’s very exciting when I manage it. And there is one lady that also sings second and often sits by me that I like well enough (which is unusual in this group).
The inevitable religious talk at these practices is less annoying than it would be at any other function for two reasons: first, because it’s being delivered by my usually very sensible (and well-spoken) mother; and, second, because it often concerns general good principles of love and rational human interaction that I can’t but agree with even where the more specific tenets of Christianity drive me up a wall.
And they do drive me up a wall. It’s something different every time, and lately it’s been what I’ve started calling taxation without representation: the complete male-centrism (masculocentrism?) of Christianity. Even Mary, a central figure in this mythology, is important solely because of the man she gave birth to, and primarily identified by a moniker that establishes how many men she’s had sex with.
It’s been a while since I’ve really mentioned my own religious beliefs, and in my own journal that does seem somewhat neglectful. So, for the record, I am still an art worshiper: I believe in, essentially, the divinity of artistic expression — the enrichment of the human spirit, the connection furnished between human minds, and the improvement of human lives through art. As far as a conscious god, you could probably call me an agnostic; but if there is an actual person supervising the universe, I henotheistically cling to art as one facet of that being and the aspect thereof that is most relevant to my own situation and therefore most appropriate for me to worship.
But back to pettier concerns, starting with clothing. LDS people have some strict dress codes, and one of them involves not entering the chapel in casual attire. Out of respect for this I was, for a while, wearing nice clothes to choir practices (since they’re held in the chapel). But eventually I noticed that (some of) the actual LDS people around me were (often) showing up in t-shirts and jeans; I figured that if they weren’t going to live up to their own standards, I was free to ignore them as well.
But last week there was a letter read out from some church authority or other requesting that the chapel dress code be respected. Obviously others have noticed this laxity besides myself. So I’m back to dressing up for choir practice, though I still noticed a lot of actual church members in jeans today. Irony, my friends.
My next topic is my name. Last July (approximately) I did something I’ve been longing to do for years but for which I required a fresh set of acquaintances. This fresh set having been supplied as I started at a new school, I went ahead and began identifying myself by my middle name instead of my first name. And a few interesting things have come to light since then that I’ve been meaning to mention for a while.
First off, it’s awesome. I have no objections to nor disliking of my first name, Jennifer, except that it’s FREAKING EVERYWHERE. The only reason I wanted a change was that I’d grown inexpressibly weary of having at least one other person — if not four or five — with my name in any given group. It’s already been more wonderful than I can express to be the only Robin in the company and watch the Jennifers and Amandas and Nicoles have to tack on their last initials to avoid confusion.
And, though I’m fine with the name Jennifer, the name Robin is so much more interesting. It’s delightfully androgynous and has a much better history of romance and intriguing associations than the other.
The one drawback I’ve encountered thus far is as follows: the nickname “Jen” by which I was previously identified, though it was often imitated by peripheral sounds (being one syllable and a common vowel), could be written off by my subconscious as likely enough to appear in a variety of similar-sounding words that it could be ignored. But my brain finds it less probable that the two-syllable “Robin” (or, more accurately, “ah-ih”) should come up in quite so many unrelated words, and therefore is less good at ignoring a sound similar to my name in extraneous conversation. It’s a little annoying at times, but I’ll probably get used to it.
Another point of interest is that because everyone calling me Robin is my new set of acquaintances and everyone calling me Jen knows the name from crappy old groups I never really wanted to be part of from years back, the name “Jen” has become “that thing only my family and PEOPLE I ABSOLUTELY HATE call me anymore.” The latter category being primarily church folk.
This is actually somewhat convenient. As my brother pointed out when I discussed this with him, someone to whom I’m not related addressing me as Jen is like someone trying to get hold of me by calling my parents’ house phone: I am automatically aware that this is no one I’m the least bit interested in talking to. For this reason as well as laziness, I’m not bothering to correct all these old acquaintances I’m really not interested in having anything to do with anyway.
I will correct my online friends, though, as follows: if you have occasion to address me by my legal name, it’s Robin now, not Jen. Unless you want to be grouped among those people I absolutely hate XD
I did sign myself Robin on the choir roster last week, though; despite the lack of correction for the peoples, I wasn’t going to sign up on the sheet that gets used to make the program with a name I’m not using. However, the officious woman in charge of the rolls and the program this year took it upon herself to change it. She can in some measure be forgiven for this, since I and any other family members that happen to be singing have been known to sign the roster in a less than perfectly serious fashion (Christine Daaé and Michael Bolton show up occasionally, among others)… but as this name was not funny or referential and included my actual last name, I think she might at least have inquired.
Aaaaanyway, I think that’s it for last Saturday and its related thoughts. On to school! This was my last week of vet assisting school timez. I have confirmed my internship at a place called Our Family Vet that seems really cool. I get all of next week off, then start 26 hours a week of internship on the 28th. I’ll probably be a zombie for at least the first few weeks of my nine and a half, because I’ll still be working EA on top of that.
Actually I’m a little worried about EA, because I’m pretty sure she’s going to want me all day on Valentine’s Day, but I’ll be interning for most of that day. We have a meeting at the store today during which I’m pretty sure she’s going to talk about VD and what’s expected of us, so we’ll see how that goes and what needs to happen.
After internship I start the vet tech program, which should be a bit more like real school than this nonsense I’ve been doing. I’ve finished the application process except for the letters of recommendation; Zombie Girl is writing the personal letter for me, and I’ma wait to get to know the cool doctor at my site and have her write the professional one.
So I had my final finals this past week (once I get to the end of vet tech I’ll have final final finals), and ended up with all A’s again despite that one homework assignment I completely forgot about that had me at a B in one class for a while. Poor “birds” girl failed a class again, this time by being unable to complete The Most Simple lab skill that has ever existed. So now she has two classes to make up in order to finish the program, and Poe only knows what will happen to her next term.
We “seniors” (people going out on internship after this set of classes) had a lunch together yesterday after school to celebrate, and are thinking of making that a weekly event so we can gossip about our internship sites. And “birds” girl. And wonder about a couple of classmates that appear to perhaps be secretly dating. That sort of important thing.
The last thing I have to say (read: the last thing I can remember having to say and I want to stop writing this and go
watch Rurouni Kenshin write fanfiction or something) is about a few dreams I’ve had.
Except… I… suddenly can’t remember them. They’ll come back to me later. And perhaps so will the other things I wanted to mention in this entry that I’ve forgotten in the course of writing what I’ve already written of this entry. Maybe. Now it’s
Rurouni Kenshin productivity time!