Sunday, August 10, 2008

Big Red bandies

We dropped the two big girls off at band camp this afternoon. Everything about this experience is bewildering! Sophie gave up the clarinet when she was in the sixth grade, and Simone is the most reluctant flautist I have ever met. And yet, they have been practicing and working hard in the band, and having a great time. How did this happen?

When we arrived at the camp site, there were kids hanging out in small groups. All of them had their instruments out and they were playing together. In the dorms, it was the same thing. The kids who are in this high school band enjoy making music together, and they are proud to be a part of the band.

When Sophie started high school last year, many of her friends were in the band. She took up her clarinet again because she wanted to be a part of something that her friends loved.

Simone was drawn by the possibility of being a Majorette (baton twirler) -- an option that is only open to kids who have played with the band for a year (and only if they are particularly strong players).

I am proud of them -- and amazed at them -- for doing the work and for pursuing something that is attractive to them. Life is truly full of surprises! But I miss them horribly, already...a whole week away! Ugh.


Justine said...

Oh my, look at those lovely ladies! We dropped our boy off at camp for the first time, too, the other day. I hear they worki them hard at those boot camps. :)

Emily said...

I think I like the new uniforms, but I'm not sure how I feel about the buttons down the front of the jacket.

Dumbstruck by the Mystery

...our temptation is always to impose our prejudices or our measure on reality -- except when we are faced with a fact that leaves us dumbstruck, and instead of dominating the fact ourselves, we are dominated, overcome by it. If there were no moments of this kind, the Mystery could do anything, but in the end, we would reduce everything to the usual explanation. But not even a Nobel Prize winner can stop himself from being dumbstruck before an absolutely gratuitous gesture. If there were not these moments, we would find answers, explanations, and interpretations to avoid being struck by anything. It is good that some things happen that we cannot dominate, then we have to take them seriously, and this is the great question of philosophy. If the conditions for the possibility of knowledge (see Kant) impose themselves on reality or if there is something that is so powerfully disproportionate that it does not let itself be "grasped" by the conditions of possibility, then the horizon opens. If this were not the case, then we could dominate everything and be in peace, or at least without drama. Instead, not even the intelligence of a Nobel Prize winner could prevent him from coming face-to-face with a fact that made him dumbstruck -- instead of dominating, it was he who was dominated. Here begins the drama, because I am called to answer. It is the drama that unfolds between us and the Mystery, through certain facts, certain moments, in which the Mystery imposes itself with this evidence. These are facts that we cannot put in our pocket, which we cannot reduce to antecedent factors.
-- Julian Carron in "Friends, that is, Witnesses."