The Blues

Elementary school kids talking, playing, dancing the blues, as explained by Conan O’Brian.  I discovered this video through one of Sheryl McFarlane‘s tweets and laughed out loud, loving it. By chance, I saw it an hour after coming home from my Blues class. Now, there are a lot of things I could be bluesy about these days — like the November weather and a case of writer’s block — but my piano keyboard isn’t one of them. Nor is my fabulous piano teacher, Linda Gould, who is breaking me away from my classical training (Grade 9 First Class Honours, Royal Conservatory of Music of Toronto) and teaching me to improvise. Jazz! Ragtime! Rock ‘n’ Roll! The Blues! My fingers and toes are lovin’ it, my whole weather-blue soul is lovin’ it. Haven’t quite loosened up enough to shed the classical “posture” but it’ll come, in time. What is it, 10,000 hours to get really good at something? Meanwhile, I stumble often, but play on. Not word by word or sentence by sentence, but note by note. Sharp by flat. Key by key. Blues by blues.

Love this quote by Duke Ellington: “I merely took the energy it takes to pout and wrote some blues.”

Song Sparrow on my waterfront walk — singing the blues away


A New Favourite Place

The other day my friend Kit Pearson and her gorgeous poodle Piper introduced me to Anderson Hill, a park in Oak Bay. We walked up through Garry oaks, wild roses and tall grass and were rewarded by superb views — especially to the east, where Mt. Baker was lit up as if on cue.

Kit’s book The Whole Truth recently won both the CLA and Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz  Awards. Congratulations!