you are not my typewriter
{Monday, May 29, 2006 . pappas finale}

Yesterday was Mrs. Pappas' last concert before retirement.

About one thousand people flocked to the Oswego High School gym yesterday afternoon for her last concert. 90 people aged 19 to 70-ish played in the OHS alumni band. The concert featured the current Wind Symphony and the alumni band in a concert that lasted three and a half hours.

Margene Pappas spend about thirty or so years as a band director in the Oswego school district. She started out teaching fifth grade band (before a failed referendum did in the fifth grade band program), then moved up to the junior highs, and she has been the director of bands at Oswego High school for about the past dozen years.

She's a fantastic conductor, and she is extremely well-respected. She was the first woman ever to serve on the board of the National Band Association, which I think is pretty cool. And while she is certainly not perfect, she has a remarkable ability to admit her mistakes and to learn from them, which may be preferable to perfection.

So I am wishing a long and happy retirement to the woman who inspired me to become a band director. Not that she's reading this. Because she's probably too old to know what a blog is.

posted at 9:41 PM by Alison


{Monday, May 22, 2006 . }

I am officially home!

I actually got home on Monday. I never update nearly as much when I'm at home. I'm always at work or cooking or watching tv with my mom or over at Ethan's and I just sort of forget that the blog exists.

I've been working everday this week as a substitute teacher's aide in Kendall County special ed classrooms. Subs are not supposed to work every day, but I do work every day, and sometimes I get to choose what kind of classroom I want to work at. And even though I'm supposed to be covering the whole county, I have the luxury of only subbing in Oswego schools because I like to ride my bike to work. And almost every classroom I go to, I'm told that usually no one fills the spots that absent aides leave. So I'm guessing there are probably about five of us total who are available to sub.

Today I'm going to Oswego East High School to sub in a preschool class, but I don't have to go until 11. I had the choice of working in a classroom where I was needed all day and doing just the half day, and I took the half day even though it means less money. I wanted to sleep in a little and update my blog and fold laundry.

I was going to throw a party this coming Friday night, but it seems that for various reasons no one can come. So the party is cancelled.


posted at 8:10 AM by Alison


{Sunday, May 14, 2006 . blog design}

I screwed around with the html for a while, and after some trial and error I figure out how to add that --> picture. I put it in the side bar, since it couldn't coexist well with my title at the top. But it cut out some of the text that is usually in the sidebar.


posted at 7:10 AM by Alison


{Saturday, May 13, 2006 . google}

I googled my own name, and a vast majority of the results are from Britain/Ireland. There were especially a lot of results regarding Alison Maguire, captain of a Dublin girls-under-16 camogie team, who won the all-Ireland championships this year.

posted at 7:18 PM by Alison


I changed the colors again. Do you think the right hand border looks wierd with the maroon background and blue/purple links?

posted at 6:23 PM by Alison



I wish I knew how to put a banner up so that this blog would stop looking so much like a Xanga.

posted at 6:13 PM by Alison



The dorm closed offcially at noon today, but I am staying because I have to play at graduation tomorrow. Then I'm spending tomorrow night at someone's apartment because I have to stay until Monday and the dorm Nazis won't let me just stay in my room a MEASLY twelve extra hours.

There is a party at my house on Friday, May 26th at 7:30PM.


I MEAN IT!!!!!

posted at 5:48 PM by Alison


{Friday, May 12, 2006 . allen hall}

I am officially an Allen Hall resident.

Oddly enough, I had never been in an Allen Hall room until today.

They're shitholes.

I had to break into this tuba player's room to get some music that was due back at the library. While I was in there I poked around and looked in his CD player and he had the Standard of Excellence Book 1 accompaniment CD in there.

Don't tell him I looked in his CD player.

And the room was even smaller than the one I'm in now with cinder block walls and linoleum floors.

The people in Allen had better be the coolest people in the universe, or I am sure as fuck not living in a room with cinder block walls.

posted at 7:51 PM by Alison


{Wednesday, May 10, 2006 . blog dreams}

Monday night I had a dream that I was having an affair with Raymi's brother. I don't think she really has a brother.

Her family was hosting some kind of Oswego High School dance in the ballroom of their enormous mansion, and I was invited even though I don't go there anymore and no one I knew was in the dream (Ethan didn't exist in the dream, so it wasn't a cheating dream). I got bored and started wandering around the mansion. I saw Raymi's thin blonde leathery-skinned mom doing something on a computer on the landing of a staircase. She didn't see me. I poked my head into Raymi's room. She was sitting at a computer, too. She didn't see me either. I wandered up to the toppermost floor where I met Raymi's elusive older brother. He was skinny and had short dark hair and a short beard and a very slightly receding hairline. He was a loser, but he was funny, and we had a great time until I had to leave the dance like Cinderella. I felt extremely guilty after I left because even though Ethan didn't exist in my dream I think I kind of sort of remembered about him at the end.

Then last night I had a dream where Diana died. We've been friends for a long time, but in my dream I hadn't seen her in for ever. I don't remember how I found out that she died, but it was a heart attack or something quick like that. She wasn't sick and she didn't get killed. For some reason, in the dream Blogger had this policy where you couldn't just blog from any computer, you had to use their computers, and they had a huge building on Wright Street where you could rent out little rooms with a computer in them. Brian had a room in the same building, and I went to visit him. Diana had written a ton of posts right before she died, and he was reading them and crying. Most people decorated their little rooms, and when he came over to mine he was really bothered by the fact that I hadn't decorated it, so he brought over some of Diana's old posters and stuff and put them up and tried not to cry.

posted at 11:34 AM by Alison


{Sunday, May 07, 2006 . pack up}

Even though I can't wait to get home, I've put off packing until the very last moment. I've got to meet with my accompanist for my jury in five hours, and after my jury I've got about an hour until I leave for home.

I don't have to pack everything today. This particular trip home is only lasting until Friday. On Friday I'll come back to Urbana, take a final and go to a band rehearsal. Then I have all day Saturday to pack. Then I play at commencement all day Sunday. Then I have to be out of the dorms because officially they close at noon on Thursday but I got special permission to stay until 7 on Sunday. Then I spend the night at the apartment of someone who will be out of town that night. Then Monday I have a doctor's appointment at McKinley. Then I come home. For good. Except for when I drive down for doctor appointments. And meetings with the chancellor about the sweat-free campus thing. And maybe sometimes concerts. And baritone mini-camp.

I am both excited and apprehensive about the summer. It's not always nice when you've been waiting a really long time for something, and then it actually comes. What if it's not all that great? I've gotten my hopes up. I also don't do well without structure. I've got a couple of short-term jobs lined up for the summer, and I'm debating whether or not I should get some kind of part-time job that would last the whole summer. It might be good to keep myself busy, but I don't want to waste all my time at home working.

I told someone recently that I'm looking forward to everything being "back to normal," but I know that's not how it will be. I'm different now. My relationship with Ethan is different now. My friends all have new friends. And I feel like I've wasted an entire year of my life.

posted at 7:47 AM by Alison


{Friday, May 05, 2006 . banana}

I have developed this bizarre obsession with keeping my teeth 100% tartar-free. Like, if I can feel even the tiniest trace of tartar with my tongue, I freak out. I went for about a month flossing constantly and trying to pick at it with my fingernails before I figured out that you can get dental picks at Walgreens. So I got a twin pack of "travel-sized" dental picks, one of which I keep in my purse and one of which I keep next to my computer. I don't use the purse one so much because it would be wierd to use a dental pick in public, but I am constantly scraping my teeth while I use the computer.

Yesterday was the annual low brass picnic at my professor's house. I kind of wanted a beer, but I felt wierd drinking with two of my band directors present. I told that to one of the tuba players. His response was that my only concern about drinking in front of them should be that they would make me chug it. Sure enough, about five minutes later, this exchange happened:

Pete(band director): Hey Curtis, you're drinking that beer pretty slowly there.
Curtis (who is definitely not 21): Oh, yeah?!?!?!?!?!

(Curtis then proceeds to take five minutes to chug the beer while Pete laughs hysterically.)

posted at 8:57 PM by Alison


{Tuesday, May 02, 2006 . immigration}

I never really thought of this before, but not only am I descended from immigrants, but I am descended from ILLEGAL immigrants.

My great-grandmother was from Lithuania. I've always loved her immigration story. She was four years old when her family decided to flee Lithuania on the eve of the Bolshevic revolution. They escaped the country in a wagon with a false bottom and entered the U.S. with papers from a dead Polish soldier. They lived in the U.S. for ever and ever with the name Nowodzelski. I can't remember what their Lithuanian name was.

It was easy to fool the government before they had computers.

posted at 7:28 PM by Alison



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