I find myself playing two roles of late and I bet you can never guess what roles they are if I didn't tell you. Those of Al Gore and George W. Bush. I was just reading The Partly Cloudy Patriot which would lead one to conclude that I have been playing the role of Al Gore more frequently. However, the past few days I have felt more like the intellectual iconoclast, George Bush, who disdains erudition in general. To boot I have been dreadfully over-using the word pretentious. I blame that on my room mate Katherine because it is so easy to use it to make jokes about her and all English PhD students- love you Katherine:).
The inspiration for this post and my dual roles has been trying to find a balance between being knowledgeable in my field and taking myself too seriously. The climax of this occurred last Sunday at ward choir practice. I have sung in a few choirs and performed in duets and such in my life, none that would be considered "serious" by music types but nice ditties that helped a 10th-grade-orchestra drop out still feel like she has some ambition. I have also been a participant in the Hill Street Choir for the last two years, but have not attended since returning this summer. In all my second class music ventures I have never flailed my arm so as to project my voice nor buzzed through my lips to warm up in the way we did last Sunday. As a result I couldn't stop laughing. I think my voice warmed up more from my ill suppressed laughter as it did from the warm-ups.
You may be wondering at this point how did we get from Al Gore and George W. Bush to a recounting of Jessica's B-side musical adventures. The point is I hope I never get so caught up in what I am doing that I can't appreciate the humor of arm flailing and lip buzzing in my own profession no matter how seriously I take myself. As to the Al and George, ever since Al had a cameo on 30-rock I think I will lean his way.