ginger: (Default)
My music assignment just inquired as to whether I have ever had a transcendental experience. I totally don't get what this has to do with American Concert Music before 1945, which is this week's lesson.

Sort of, I guess. When I was a senior in high school, I went to Germany for an exchange program, and there were two places where I felt the Weight of Human Experience pressing on me – one was a 500 year old cathedral in Munich, the other was standing inside the foundation of what had been a bunkhouse at Dachau concentration camp. Even twelve years later, I’m hard pressed to put either experience into words, but I would say they’re probably the closest I’ve come to a transcendental experience.
ginger: (Default)
So, in direct opposition to the jerkitude that is my anthro instructor, my music teacher and his TA/wife (yes, his wife is his legit TA, I'm not just phrasing it that way) are awesome.

The assignment due today involved watching a documentary on Sondheim. I didn't catch this until Wednesday, and even though I put it on my Netflix list that day, I won't get it until tomorrow at the earliest. So I did the other questions on the assignment and submitted it with a note:

Doctor W, I'm going to have to take the point hit on #24. I didn't catch the documentary requirement in time, and while it's on the way from Netflix, it won't be here til tomorrow at the earliest. Entirely my fault, sorry!

The reply from his TA:
Tsk! Ginger, send in your completed quiz once you have seen the Sondheim video. Art does not give penalties for late work. (He is such a sweetie!). Just send it in when you can. I'll just store this copy of your quiz in your e-file as a reminder, OK? Sharon

I answered:
What the what?? Are you sure? Okay, I'll get it in as soon as possible. Thanks!!

And she says:
*laugh!* Yup! I’m sure … Art tells students that he is a teacher, not a policeman. You paid good hard money to take this course to learn as much as you can about music. He respects that and takes joy in supporting your goal. Punishment and penalties don’t make for satisfying learning experiences … they make students feel pressured and angry and accomplish nothing. Art loves teaching adults particularly, because they respond (usually) to reason. *smile* Sharon

To quote [livejournal.com profile] knitmeapony, that's ... that's so reasonable.
ginger: (Default)
66/66 = 100

WOW! YOUR THIRD ACE! Well done, Ginger! Here’s a huge smile for you and a spectacular reward:

People (also known as perfect strangers) walk along the street smiling at each other, saying “Hi!” and “Glad to meetcha!” and “Did you hear? Ginger O’Lastname aced another quiz!” The standard response is “Far out!” and “Yikes!” and “Cool beans!” Before you know it, a crowd gathers in front of the Pike Street Market. Liquid refreshments (of all sorts) are passed hand-to-hand, as the word about you spreads (and the liquid refreshments work their magic), Seattle-ites decide to celebrate. No surprise at that! Traffic slows down, then gridlocks, as all of Seattle joins the party! Now remember, news travels fast! By now everyone in the city is standing, dancing in the streets, waving their arms in the air, and shouting “Ginger, you rock! you rock!”

That very evening at a Mariner’s game — right after the national anthem is played (and while everyone has their hats off and their hands over their hearts) — your name appears on the score board, along with your stats of course, and the entire stadium performs “the wave” in your honor! At the mention of your staggering accomplishment, flash mobs occur worldwide! The Internet is jammed for hours, virtual worlds collide, cyberspace folds (sorry about that, William Gibson), and universities and military facilities all over the planet (who depend on the Internet) have to close down for the duration!

Naturally, everyone in this class thanks you for the holiday! *grin*


Oi. I hope to have this much energy when I'm retired.
ginger: (Default)
After reading my music instructor's commentary the other day, I am finding myself being a bit less formal with this week's assignment.

Yes, I did both just refer to the Normans being descended from "a group of Vikings that busted heads all up and down the European coast" and use the phrase "melting pot FTW." Also: "And really, who wouldn’t be terrified of a great whackload of angry men charging you in the buff with swords?" (Though I'm not sure what the clothing preferences of the early Celts has to do with the development of music in the US - this really was the question though.)

Don't judge. :)
ginger: (Default)
So I got the grade back on my first Music assignment today. The instructor's note, copied and pasted exactly, except he used pointy brackets that I replaced with ** for HTML purposes:

38/38 = 100

BRACE YOURSELF, Ginger!

CONGRATULATIONS! ... YOUR FIRST ACE! *huge smile* Here’s a reward from your proud professor:

Now, you need to indulge me a little ... people who earn aces get rewards (sort of). They start off fantastic, and the more aces you stack up, the more fantastic the rewards get. I promise! So here goes ...

At Seattle’s City Hall, triumphal horns blare forth (TA DAH!) Everyone immediately stops in their tracks. “My word!” says one man “Are the royals in town?” “Nay, nay,” shouts the Mayor, as he holds up his hands for quiet. The press (and many paparazzi) have gathered around the Mayor. You can hear shouts of “Mr. Mayor!” “Mr. Mayor!” and the snapping of cameras and the popping of flashbulbs by the dozens! QUIET! I can’t hear myself think! Just about then, a town crier announces that you (yes YOU, Ginger) have “aced” your first quiz ... a huge crowd gathers as hundreds ... wait! THOUSANDS more join the throng and line the sidewalks, leaving hardly any room for the television cameras. Suddenly a hush falls over the entire city as you appear on the steps of City Hall. You stand tall and proud, your eyes searching the crowd for familiar faces (Yikes! There’s that weird looking kid from second grade!). Then there is a roar of yelling and applause, and shouts of “Bravo!” “Bravo!” are heard all across Seattle. The Mayor (bless his heart), and the Governor (holding the family puppy, who joyfully licks the makeup off her face) join you to announce to the press that a state-wide celebration in your honor is about to begin! As the Mayor sobs with heartfelt joy, the Governor dabs at the tears in her eyes (and at the puppy slobber on her chin) with a teensy-weensy hanky. You do your professor proud by just letting your lower lip tremble a little.

Well done! I say ... WELL DONE!


*blink* Wow. (He also peppers his emails with homemade lolcats.)

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