Friday, March 14, 2008

Recognition, Controversy, and General Unsettledness

I know I rant and rave and bitch and moan about the symphony, but to tell you the truth, I love what I do, both musically and as part of the artistic staff. Especially over the past year and a half. I remember doing a post maybe two years ago during the time when I was really having personnel problems, and someone asked if things were so bad, why do I stick with it? And was there anything good that happened with the symphony? Well, that was a wake-up call. I hadn't realized that my blog (as an extension of my real life) had descended so far into the pits of negativity. I'd like to think that things have improved. In spite of whatever bitching I do, I realize that I'm doing something that not a whole lot of people get to do, and I do it well. And don't tell anyone--I'm having a ball doing it! And apparently things are beginning to pay off...

We belong to a national symphony organization (League of American Orchestras). They lobby, they educate, they help out organizations when asked, they are a wealth of information for everything symphonic in the U.S. And they put out a monthly (I think) magazine/journal titled (are you ready for this?) Symphony. We, in turn, fill out surveys and budget information and programs for the year so they can compile all that information so that we can all know what everyone else is doing. Apparently, the music we programmed this season caught the eyes of someone in the offices of Symphony. We were one of three orchestras featured in an article about small-budget orchestras (less than $1,000,000) and how they can program music that one wouldn't expect to be able to be played by "lesser" orchestras. Ours was the feature orchestra of the three and got the most ink. I won't bore you with specifics. Five of the ten pages are individually jpeg'd below. You can read it or not.

But what I DO want you to do is click on the fourth page there and check out the picture halfway down the page. I'd tell you who you'll see, but modesty prevents me....

Ah, we haven't had any controversy or button-pushing topics in quite awhile around here. Until yesterday. One of the first emails I read when I logged on yesterday morning was a scathing email about my support of the young lady wanting breast implants. Her email had some valid points, from an outsider's view. There were also numerous comments basically telling her not to get them. So let me go on record here--

I am 100% in favor of her goal. She's researched it, asked the questions, and has been diligent in making sure that things are safe for her. She's not some floozy--she's geeky and smart and works in a related field. Sort of. She knows what she's doing.

If this were a random girl who came and asked for my help, I would have probably declined. But this is one of my earliest bloggerfriends. She and I have already had the conversation. I told her on numerous occasions that I thought it was an unnecessary procedure. As did many of her blogfans. Even suggesting that the money would be better spent traveling to Europe or something. But this is not something that she woke up one morning and decided she had to do. The fact is--the decision has been made. A long time ago. This is a woman who is unhappy in her current body. And there's not one of us who knows how unhappy. Yes, she's got a body that 73.487% (that's a scientific number, by the way) of HNTers would love to have. But she's not happy with it. For whatever reasons. And there's no way that we can argue with that.

I wonder what the reaction would have been if she had a body such that she was asking for clicks to get a breast reduction. Would there have been a similar chorus of "no, don't do it"s in that case? Don't we all, at some point, look at our bodies and wish that, with the wave of a magic wand, our bodies would be something that we like? More of this, less of that, shift this over there, change the color, tattoo it, cut it, pierce it. Ultimately, regardless of what everyone might tell us, we alter our bodies on a daily basis. Sometimes more radically than others, but that's our choice. If this girl wants implants to help her feel better in her own body, who are we to talk her out of it? She works out, she does the whole healthy eating thing. It's not like she's looking for a quick fix. Nor is she doing it so that she can get more stares from the guys. She gets plenty of those already. And she's not looking for DD stripper boobs. She's doing this for herself and for no one else.

There's at least a half dozen women who HNT who already have opted for cosmetic breast implants. Should we jump down their throats too? I would think not. My guess is that every one of them has found it to be a positive experience, and that they are more comfortable with their bodies than they were before. This girl was not asking us to decide for her, or even asking for an opinion. She was asking for our clicks on that link to achieve a financial goal. Without costing any one of us a single cent. Maybe not the way each one of us would do it, but the way that she wants to do it.
Other general unsettledness yesterday... I had another email that was somewhat threatening. I was going to ignore it, but I stewed about it all day, and mailed off a response last night. I behaved, but it wasn't easy. The unsettledness wasn't confined just to me, either. A couple of blogs that went private yesterday. A couple of blogs that are about to die out. It just seemed that the whole day was not a "feel good" day. I blame the leap year. And to top it off, I did something fairly stupid the other night that I'm just realizing has probably bruised a good relationship. One of those things where I should have known better, and I think I'm going to have to take my lumps on this one.
I've got a date with Beethoven all weekend, so once again I won't be around much. Have a good weekend! And get un-unsettled!!
Oh, and since this is MY pontification (and it's been awhile!), you don't get to leave comments. Why? Because that's the way I want it! (if you feel you must, go ahead and email me...)