Monday, September 16, 2013

Website Launch

Hey All!

I just launched my personal website to advertise my music stuff.  Check it out!  It is alanahenkel.com

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Runny Eggs

Hey All!

I like my eggs over-easy.  I love the yolk all runny so I can use my bread, potatoes, or whatever else is there to sop it up.  I think the yolk tastes glorious when it is hot, but not done.

I just made myself a deviled egg.  It was delicious.  When I cracked open the egg I boiled this morning, I noticed the yolk wasn't quite done to what a perfect hard boil egg yolk should be. Whatever.  I made it and it was glorious.  And it reminded me of my mom.

One Easter when I was young, probably between 11 and 13, my parents had recently gotten a brand new stove.  As per tradition of our church, we had an Eastern breakfast that families brought food to share.  My mom volunteered to make some hot dish and colorful Easter eggs for around the table.  One woman opened up a hardboiled egg, which my mom believed to be hers, and bit into it and said in an annoying tone, "Ewww!  The yolk isn't all the way cooked!"  You know what?!  It doesn't matter.  The internal temperature when the egg was cooked was probably hot enough to kill all of the germs, and then it was refrigerated, so, it was fine.  And I probably liked the taste way better.  I didn't notice anything wrong.  The point was, this woman somehow wanted to be superior to somebody else by putting on a putzy show.

My mom went home and cried.  She went on about how she wasn't good enough as a wife, mother, church woman because she didn't have the eggs properly done.  Well, she had gotten a new stove, which probably had different temperatures than she was used to. I didn't get it though.  I thought the eggs were fine. I am sure I ate a ton of them.

The funny thing is, I find I care how other people think of me as much as Mom does. I do go home and cry and I do fret over being the "perfect wife" (even though, I am an awful wife for being away from my husband for three months to finish school...harhar...the people who criticize that don't take into consideration how many couples do distance over the course of their marriage). From what I gather, this critical woman's daughters have grown up to be as judgmental and prissy as that comment she made.

I like runny eggs.  I think that developed because I will never forget how upset that egg comment made my mom. I thought her eggs were perfect. So anyone who wants to criticize them--please shut your mouth and fix your own eggs.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Oboe Secrets: 75 Performance Strategies for the Advanced Oboist and English Horn Player

Please check out my professor's upcoming book!  I helped create all of the examples and photos.  I even did some embouchure modeling.  You can pre-order it on Amazon.com.  It will come out in October.


Facebook: The Life vs. The Show

Hey All!

I am guessing that many of you find me through Google+, because I choose to advertise this blog through that medium.  I do not advertise individual posts on Facebook for the following reasons:

1. I have a lot of Facebook friends that I would prefer not comment on my blog
2. Facebook friends see enough music and food thoughts already
3. I may be tempted to stop writing about what I want to write about

Today I will address my third point.  I will first categorize people by they way they post:

1. The negative Nelly who wants lots of attention through being only negative
2. The positive Polly whose posts almost always brighten up your day
3. The political activist
4. The religious activist
5. The career advertiser
6. The witty commentator
7. The occasional poster
8. The observer

I enjoy numbers 2, 6, 7, and 8.  Numbers 3 and 4 are okay once-in-a-while, but some people are relentless.  Number 5 gets annoying and number 1 needs a therapist.

While growing up, I would get jealous of certain friends or families and complain how that person has a perfect life.  My mother, in her infinite wisdom, told me that I do not know what happens behind the scenes in that person's life.  It is so true!  Some people put on a front of a perfectly charmed life, but are actually sad and conflicted.  We never know what is really happening.

Since the age of media technology, we have been able to widely advertise a persona. Some people only show the fantastics parts of their lives.  It is so easy to think that so-and-so has a better marriage than me or wonder why I can't have eating self-control like John Doe who only posts health food photos. (Yes, I have posted things I have made on here, but if I posted everything I ate, I would be so ashamed.)

What if I posted on Facebook everything about my life?  The good and the bad?  What if Positive Polly is hurting deep down, but wants to fit that perfect person in her head?  How many people are trying to act like they have great relationships through what they tell the world on Facebook because they don't want to admit they have some hard work and problems to resolve?

I don't want to know every single detail of a person's life, but I need to remind myself that not everything is as it appears.  It is also a good reminder to myself to not use social media as a way to costume my life, but to figure out how to fix it.

To the people who are transparent with their struggles and successes in a tasteful way: Bravo to you!

*Smokey lives his life transparently.