I woke up with a flash of memory. Since beginning this blog, I have been unable to remember whether I made it out of elementary school with my violin – I know I played in the fourth through sixth grades, but I’ve been unable to recall if I kept playing in junior high. The thing that has been nagging at me is a concrete memory I have of a music room at the junior high school I attended.
This morning’s flash reminded me that I took vocal music in at least the seventh, and likely the seventh and eighth grades. I have a memory of a male choir instructor who played the piano for us. I remember two songs that we worked up for performances – one was the Quaker folk song “Simple Gifts.” The other was “Lost in Your Eyes” by Debbie Gibson.
So I did not take my violin to junior high school. I really should have. Junior high was two wasted years of my life – two years of babysitting when I, for one, was past the age of needing a babysitter. As a student who actually had interests in academic pursuits, I was generally sent out of my classrooms to the library, where I pursued independent studies while my “peers” screamed at each other and our teachers – it was an environment not well-suited to anything but growing delinquents.
Imagine if I would have had my violin – just me and the music and hours a day in some empty junior high school practice room. I could’ve been a contender.
Thanks for reading.