"Look Marge - I soaked in it!"
My right hand hurts. I keep bending my fingers back, trying to stretch it, but I’m “double-jointed” – the fingers go all the way back to my wrist – so it takes a lot of muscle-power to stretch the hand, causing me to worry that, in my effort to stretch my right hand, I’m going to injure the left.
I’m pretty sure there’s an ancient, Chinese proverb about this exact situation. If only I’d have paid attention in third grade, when they teach Chinese mysticism and philosophy – then I could quote it. Alas.
My 3rd grade class. Can you find me?
I suppose I should explain why my right hand hurts. God knows I don’t trust you to come up with a reason yourself. I know you, dear reader, and know that your twisted imagination has already concocted an offensive reason for why my right paw aches; something like:
“I’ll bet he was trying to knit a scarf with thick, Rowan ‘Big Wool’ yarn using only a 10 inch, single-point needle!”
You’re sick, y’know. You need help.
The reason my right hand hurts is because I have been addressing envelopes for wedding invitations, using large, calligraphy pens and ornate lettering. It’s my wedding gift to Carrye and Jared, who’s wedding it will be.
I guess I should break it to you now – I didn’t see your name on the invite list. But don’t take it personally, I mean, you don’t even know Carrye and Jared and you certainly don’t have time to fly to Texas for the ceremony. I know – I looked at your schedule.
What does any of this have to do with Amoeba Music? That’s a good question, and one I’ve been asking myself as I wrote everything you just read.
Here’s what I figure: I’ve been listening to music the whole time I’ve been hunched over my desk, like a Medieval monk in Gap sweats, so hey… (you ready?) Here’s my suggestions for good tunes to play while you’re addressing many envelopes in your hella phattest calligraphy:
Colin Blunstone “One Year”
The debut solo album (released in 1971) from a member of beloved band, The Zombies. He’s got a lulling, breathy voice that makes even the up-tempo tracks cozy, plus he’s got a penchant for string arrangements, which, in the context of early 70’s folk/pop (i.e., Tim Hardin or Judee Sill) is something I’m a sucker for. It’s intelligent and interesting but still catchy – kind of like early John Cale, but mellower and with fewer art school pretensions. (Don’t misunderstand me – I love art school pretensions. After all, I’m the guy who still thinks This Mortal Coil is appropriate music for getting ready for a night out on the town.)
I was alerted to the album by friend and Amoeba co-worker Aaron, who masterfully deduced that I would be smitten with it. Dude – you should totally ask Aaron for listening suggestions. He’s smart!
Anyway, if you’re into any of the musicians I just mentioned, you should make a stop at Amoeba (on your way to purchase more ink cartridges for your Schaeffer pen) and pick up a copy.
Unless, of course, you want something a little more pulsating while you scribble thy script, in which case, I’ve also been enjoying…
Leslie Hall “CeWEBrity”
The latest album from sex symbol and fashion icon, Leslie Hall. It turns even a monotonous chore like calligraphy into a house party. It’s fresh, it’s naughty, it’s funny, and will coax you into singing along by the middle of every track.
WARNING: Because you will inevitably be bopping your arse as you listen, it’s hard to make the delicate curve of a capital G without quivering and ruining the line. Only expert calligraphists should attempt to mix these two art forms.
I hope these suggestions will come in handy next time you find yourself looking for a soundtrack for a handwriting task. (Note: Though I haven’t tried it myself, I feel certain that these albums would also work for addressing invitations to Bar Mitzvahs, baby showers – even tree trimming parties, although it’s not Christmas music. But then, not everyone celebrates Christmas, so that might not matter. Although, why would you be having a tree trimming party if you don’t celebrate Christmas? That’s just weird. You’re weird. You seriously need professional help.)