Tuesday, February 3, 2009

My Bad

One of my students was sure he would NOT be a finalist. He had played so much better at home, he missed a few big jumps, he was fairly certain he had few to zero dynamic contrasts. To quote the president today, "I screwed up". He called his mom on the way home, so disappointed. What this young man did not do was to blame the piano, the day, the drive or the judge. Noble.

What's remarkable about my student's honesty is that his critique said almost the identical. You should work harder in accuracy, the quieter sides of this piece, but there is so much potential in your performance. In a wild dash of grace, our young pianist IS a finalist. The judge heard past the minor flaws to the full content of his musicianship, of his character, in a way. Granted this will not be the case at the final competition. His best "A" game is the only one that will be awarded honors.

I can hear the president at the dinner table, groaning as this Daschle problem came to light. Wow, Michelle, what do I do now? Girls, if you had this problem in school, what would I expect you to do about it? You'd tell the truth? What an awesome and novel idea. I can do no less than what I expect of you.

I hope we can we allow the president to take the responsibility, be honest, noble. I admire my student and the president for owning up to their mistakes. My high school students love to say, "oops, my bad". I shake my head in agreement, amusement and some amazement that we can be given a second chance.
(an albino squirrel family lives in our neighborhood. He is sitting in a crab apple tree.)


  1. Hi Chris, this post really did my heart good. I love it when our judges see past the nitty-gritty. But you probably already know that. congratulations to your student! Marcia Vahl

  2. We have great opportunities to see the beauty and the best of each other. I love our job, don't you?


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