Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Am I Still Well?

Oliver at Anaheim Stadium for CIF Championship game Tustin vs. El Toro

 I have quite a few things to talk about this week. Firstly, I am off school for the holidays. Friday was our last day. Although we are off from school, we have been busy doing fun things. Unfortunately, Miguel and Oliver got sick. That was the only bad thing. Somehow, I have not become sick . . . yet. I eyed the Airborne in the cupboard a minute ago and I think it might be a good idea to take it.

Meat is Still Murder
Secondly, I finally gave up eating meat altogether. I have never been a big fan of meat, but I feel disgusted when I think of the loss of life. In all honesty, I think that writing this blog about my feelings on the issue after seeing the Morrissey gig, kind of did it for me. It emblazoned my feelings on the meat industry and animal rights and then gave me the will to give it up. My new motto: LIFE TASTES GOOD!

Young the Giant (Still)
Roland and I went to the Galaxy Theater in Santa Ana to see Young the Giant. It was a perfect night to see them as they are all from the OC and it was the last night of their tour this year-although they play the Wiltern Theater in Los Angeles in February. Another reason it was a perfect night to see them is because the concert was actually a benefit for the Irvine Public Schools Foundation. The proceeds help to keep music programs up in the public schools in the Irvine area. What a generous gift of their time and talents!

You may (or may not) recall that Morrissey likes this band saying they have 
"the perfect tone ... and Sameer's voice is unbreakable. If there is any justice in the world (and we all know there isn't) Young The Giant will own most of it by August. It's so easy to fire out remnants of snobbery where new music is concerned (in fact, I find it VERY easy), but once every three thousand years, a band comes along who restore that precious component of faith. Had I the gift of adequate words I would express more than mere thanks."

Because it was a "hometown" gig, we had special treats. High school friends and orchestra members came up to play a song. Also, there was a competition between classes in the three different high schools in the Irvine district to use a song by Young the Giant in an advertising campaign for the foundation. We were able to see the winner. Great job, high school kids! But the most important reason for the hometown gig being so very good, was that the audience was so into it-after all, they are OC heroes!!!

It was a charity event for public schools, so there were many teachers as far as I could tell. Whenever I saw anyone looking slightly middle-aged and wearing comfortable shoes, I suggested to Roland that they were teachers. Who knows? They could have been record executives, I guess. Dare I mention the fact that they were in all likelihood, saying the exact same thing about me?

To drive the point home even further, I saw a student that I had last year in my senior AP class. I grabbed her hand as she walked by. But I can't say whether or not she recognized me. It was undeniably dark in The Galaxy and she was probably wondering what in the hell this middle aged woman was doing. She looked embarrassed. So, either she was embarrassed because she did not know what to say since she did not recognize me or else she really didn't want to recognize me. I mean, she was holding hands with a guy-possibly a boyfriend. Let's face it, you don't exactly grow in estimation in the musician/band/gig goer circles when you are best buddies with a high school English teacher.

I forgive her.
Back to the actual gig. It was energetic and lively. Again, lots of kids. The opening act was a band called Tapioca and the Flea. They, too, were lively and fun. Very different. I wasn't sure what to make of them. The lead singer looks like your average  guy you might see at the grocery store and then he moves his butt around and sings groovy lyrics into a microphone. Fun. The only thing I did not like at times was the distortion of the vocals. It was different, but I could not understand the lyrics at all. I just wanted to be able to at least know what the refrain was.

As far as the lead act, as I stated before, it was a home town gig so they did not need to win the crowd over. The audience just anticipated what the next song was going to be and sang along in unison. As Morrissey more eloquently said, Sameer's voice is strong and amazing. The rest of the band is obviously very talented. Great tuneful melodies.

Here is a recording somebody there made. No doubt a young person barely hanging on to her camera but it gives the feel of being there rather accurately.

Other News Still

Tustin High School's football team has won the CIF Championship. We attended the final game at Angel Stadium and were not expected to win at all. Our team was awesome. Really proud of those kids. First championship win since 1948.

You may not know this. While Irvine hails Young the Giant, we (Tustin) have the most former NFL players from our school than any other school in the nation. I know it isn't academic. But its interesting. I have a good friend and fellow English teacher who has stopped teaching to write a book about our coach. I am excited for her and, well, slightly jealous.

My day will come. My day will come!

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