Sunday, May 30, 2010

Best of State Gala, Salt Palace Ballroom

It was a night to remember. The most expensive event I've ever been to. I think. Well, that effected my COLA instead of Daddy's. $75/plate. Probably top$ Neil Diamond, Loggins and Messina, John Denver and The Lettermen ... mostly because seeing them was in another less expensive era (or two). ((Or three.)) (((Not quite an eon ago, though.))) Well, I guess I should consider the food factor into the cost. And all the performers last night, of course, are Utahns. Though I suppose the food would be an upper and the Utahns could be a downer. Just considering cost factors of course. [I'm taking a big chance here, leaving out the happy face icons ... the few of you who would read this hopefully have figured out where this paragraph should be punctuated with laughter. Well a chuckle or two at least.]

The best part about it was I was home by 9:45 p.m. Plenty of time to put the final touches on subbing the music in Primary, the most fun church job in the entire universe.

I put all of last night's pictures on Facebook: "Click"

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Yes!!!! I asked and was allowed to use Rock of Ages, No. 111, in Sacrament meeting today! I had the organist play it all the way through and the congregation did fine. I had been told to have it sung in Priesthood and R.S. today, so I responded that I'd leave Priesthood up to him (which he promptly forgot about) and I did ask the R.S. counselor, who used to be the ward music leader, what she thought and she said we'd be fine without it. It has not been sung in our ward in six years or more.

Double Yes!!!! I'd been turned down about five months ago on In Remembrance of Thy Suffering, No. 183, as being too hard for a Sacrament hymn, but it made it through inspection this time! It's full of triplets, and they did fine with it as well. I practiced/practiced/practiced so maybe my confidence would rub off.

Personally, I think Sacrament-meeting-goers are more interested if there's enough variety and challenge that they actually have to look at the score. True, those who can't read music have a problem, but they can still appreciate the momentarily unknown. I don't think it's that the powers that be "believe" in me now, after ten months, I think it's more that being patiently persistent has paid off. So I'll cross my toes and continue my prayers that it lasts....

P.S. - the choir director is old, like me. Well, older, actually, than me, and she picked "Let the lower lights be burning" for our next number. And I'm scratching my head, why are these soooo familiar to me! No, it's not that we sang them in the ward growing up, for Brightly Beams has always been a male chorus number and I can't imagine my being so impressed with such limited exposure that it became a lasting memory. Aha! It's all those LP records down there in the basement... Tennessee Ernie Ford.

Shhhh! (Don't tell the bishop!)

Saturday, May 15, 2010

"When America was on it's knees, he brought us to our feet."

Well, Lois, I'm sure you're too busy to read this, but it's a "family matter." Wink/wink.

I don't know how Janeil and Lois felt, but as a kid it was such a surprise and incongruous to realize that Daddy loved the fights. He watched the signature fights on TV religiously. He did not cheer them on nor cuss them out, but he watched intently and was often observed by me to be on the edge of his seat! (Not the blow-by-blow so much as on edge as to the outcome.) Occasionally I would try to talk him into letting us watch something else (one TV), and was never successful though I must say he was always cheerful in his disinclination. To me it seemed like such an odd fit, but no doubt I'd have understood better had not the rest of the family been female.

(He actually watched very little TV. The only other thing I remember he watched on a regular basis was Bonanza. He more favored putting on some music, and we were thoroughly introduced to all varieties. He also took us to monthly entertainment at the Smith Fieldhouse on lower campus, the Utah Symphony, the Globetrotters. We saw numerous Broadway musicals, and Peter Pan in New York City.)

I just watched Cinderella Man, a 1995 movie about boxing, and chronicles James Braddock who won the heavyweight championship in 1935. Daddy would have been 22. He was 20 in 1933 and Braddock 28, the height of the Depression. Braddock turned pro in 1926 (Daddy 13) and fought nearly 100 bouts. I do not doubt that Daddy listened to many of his fights on the radio. (Keeping in mind that for the championship bout in New York City, he'd have been on his mission and then stationed in Quakertown, PA with five other elders. I have no idea if media rules were as strict then as they are now.) I do not doubt he felt the same as many did, that Braddock gave people hope during the Depression years. Braddock was forced to take the dole to keep his family intact in 1933-34, and when he won a come-back fight, he went to the welfare agency and gave back all he had been given.

It was a very insightful movie as to what it was like to live in that era. (PG-13 for language and "fighting" however.)

Watching a movie like this brings into sharper focus just how much I love and miss my Dad, who I must add possibly never gave a fig for boxing until the '50's! And how fortunate we are to have heros in our lives. He did what all good parents do, gave us hope and a good example, sans the fluff. We didn't often know his inner feelings. He didn't talk much about the Depression or boxing. He would have, had we cared to ask. I have fond memories of the latter years of things he told me when I was finally grown up enough to ask. I wish I'd started sooner. I do admire and respect and honor him for his reticence. He was larger than life in example, which always speaks louder than words. And best of all he lived his testimony. Even on fight nights. Wink/wink.

Neil Y. Fugal, BYU, June 1938, age 25
B.S. Accounting and Mathematics
(Just days before Janeil's birth)

Saturday, May 8, 2010

The Friday before *last* Mothers Day, Jewel sent this box to my work.
Inside was the most perfect and delicious fruit!
It was like walking through the orchard when I lived in Phoenix,
smelling the oranges!
Yummy apples and pears as well.
I shared a few with my colleagues and
thoroughly enjoyed the rest over the following week.
The claim to fame was that they were
picked and shipped within two days.
Packed in straw with a foam insert underneath and on top.
This year she asked me if I wanted my M.D. gift
sent to my work Friday or to my home Saturday.
Yes, I am greedy, and I said send it home. J

So it was somewhat of a surprise to open the door
and there stood a young lady
in plainclothes instead of a delivery gal/guy,
who handed me this,
which I shall peel open for your viewing pleasure:
Note the expansion link on the ribbon.

She claims she budgets for M.D.
Even so, I'm sure she overspends,
but I sure am enjoying every bite!
(If there's any left on Monday I'll share them.)
((Highly unlikely.))

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Colleen, my co-worker, got a magazine at work one day all about Best of State. She thought we ought to try our hand at winning in the category of Education: support personnel. She kept bringing it up until our boss said okay, go for it. So the day it was due we began, which was also the day before a state report is due and I'm also buried in deadline payroll data.

They asked me to start it out and flower it up as I have a "rep" for that, and I wrote a few paragraphs detailing the "fourfold" reasons why Provo School District Child Nutrition Department ought to win. Then the boss and Colleen went to work expounding on it and it ended up "sevenfold." These kind of write-ups require a "conclusion" – some sort of achievement as a result of all we'd done and I decided it would be that we'd upped our meal participation, but not yet knowing if we actually had.

Knowing we'd want to submit even if we had no "measured" success, I wrote it with the angle that we were in competition with "no one" and that it was worthwhile even if unmeasured. Then I went to work on the state report deadline, the result to be added to the prior four month's data. I didn't want it to be from the beginning of the school year - I hoped it proved to be an improvement over time. It would be another Ambrose Bierce writing marathon to cover the new promotions implemented this year, but suffice it to say, the success WAS measurable. It ended up 1,900 words, five pages long! Colleen and I were there late that night, dolling it up, and figuring out how to hyperlink stuff to the application.

Some of our "stuff."
Booklet [See if you can find Hayden!]

At any rate, as you've already figured out, we won! The individual, business and organization nominations were judged by over a hundred people, comparing three criteria: excel in endeavors, use innovative approaches or methods, contribute to a better quality of life in Utah. We pick up our medal at the black-tie Awards Gala at the Grand Ballroom of Salt Palace the end of the month, featuring, they claim, "a double entree dinner and fabulous entertainment." I'm not actually much looking forward to going, but it will definitely be a night to remember! And soon Colleen will be getting another Best of State magazine, and "we'll" be in it!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

I’m told it’s now gauche to have a playlist on your blog. Well, as we all know, blogging is for “me,” not “you,” so mine stays. I love to listen to my music on occasion. If it bothers you, use one of your 20 digits to press the off button. It won’t offend me in the least. If you’re poised and quick, you can shut it down before it makes nary a peep (which is why I put it on the top). If you love me and want to recall my favorites after I’m gone (assuming blogging doesn’t go the way of the eight-track tape), it’ll still be there. Including my postings which explain why.