Thursday, November 29, 2007

Open seams

A ripped out page from my newest book. Last night was super; I had a great time w/Josh and Lynn. I'm still unclear about what will happen show-wise in Mexico but it was a fun evening and there was plenty of wine and we talked about how sad it is that we don't play our instruments anymore (and about a million other things). I have been particularly sad lately b/c my biggest violin callus on my index finger has been peeling away. It's amazing that you can work for 20 years, but then in less than one, all that hard work disappears. I always thought my calluses would be forever. It was hard enough for me to lose my violin hickey, but my finger calluses! Devastating. Not to mention that I have less protection for when I accidentally cut my fingers when chopping veggies: those calluses have saved me time and time again from painful and bloody finger injuries.

It makes me (almost) want to pick up my fiddle again just to build up the skin. But that takes a long time. In the meantime, I still have violinist friends that I can live through vicariously. When I saw Kiwon this week, she talked about how she had to go to Philly because she had five open seams. For a moment, I was stumped. And then I realized we were talking about her instrument. When temperature/humidity shifts, wood instruments expand/contract, and often parts will pull away from each other, causing gaps at the seams. You can hear open seams if you hold the neck of the violin and knock lightly all along the perimeter of the instrument. Wherever you get a different sound, you know you have an opening. So you have to go to the shop and get it glued and clamped back together since it affects the sound of the instrument when you play. I haven't taken mine in for a tune up for years, not since halfway through living in Chicago.

Hopefully I get to take care of my own seams in December, figuring out what will happen in the spring, seeing more art, and getting into shape. Or maybe I'll sit around like my violin in the closet. Here's to the first option. Oh, and Jennifer in upstate NY got my knit plastic bag panel; an image is up on her website (scroll all the way down). And, I finally read for colored girls... on the train late last night. I still remember helping my painting teacher prep sets for that production at Oberlin almost 10 years ago. Someday, I'll do sets, too.

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