It all started last night, with stake choir practice. The rehearsal went great--everyone was motivated and wanted to learn their parts, and whenever there was downtime, someone would notice a piece of sheet music that I had, or start practicing the sign language we're going to do in this year's Primary program, and then I'd start playing the song in question on the piano, and all the little girls (and some of the adults) who were there would gather around and sing. That's one of my favorite things to do--impromptu sing-alongs. And we don't get to do it very often, because it's less fun with just two people, and in most other social situations it just doesn't come up.
So we had this wonderful choir practice, and we were getting along with everyone, but maybe there was a little bit of a mental strain from being In Charge of stuff. As the choir director, Athena has to do a lot of talking, and she's not used to being the one that talks. Then we were talking about...okay, so the choir is rehearsing for a big two-day celebration for the stake's fiftieth anniversary. It's kind of a big deal, and even the mayor is going to attend one of the sessions! But the idea is to sing for both of the two sessions, and we only have one song so far, and the two of us and the stake music director were trying to come up with ideas. Stake Music Director--I'll call her Rose, because she likes Sleeping Beauty but Aurora would be confusing. Rose likes a song by Kenneth Cope, which brought up some interesting feelings from the past, especially because the song was arranged by Randy Kartchner (not sure on the spelling), whose wife used to accompany our stake choir when we were in high school. She was the reason I thought I would never be a good enough pianist to accompany a choir, because she was so incredibly amazing.
I had always thought it would be neat to have a choir sing a medley of "Ye Elders in Israel" and "As Sisters in Zion," because those are two songs that half the church hears all the time and the other half hears not at all--the former is sung primarily at priesthood meetings for men, while the latter is mostly only sung at Relief Society meetings for women (but sung very frequently at those meetings). We were trying to figure out if anyone in the ward could provide an arrangement of such a medley, and the name of our ward music director came up. So I called her, and was reminded that she's kind of home-bound, because her father is home-bound and she needs to take care of him, but she sounded so sad and so in need of company, and I was feeling bad for her because we can't just drive over there and say hi.
That was on the car ride home from choir practice. In an attempt to lighten my own mood, I changed the subject back to this medley and how surely someone out there has one or can write one. That's when I remembered our cousin who is a professional musician and has lots of professional musician friends, including composers. We thought he could probably help us, but it would be pretty funny if that's where we got the arrangement from, and to clue Rose in on why that would be the case, we said, "He's a progressive Mormon." Not to say that being progressive is bad, but based on our Facebook experience, we tend to disagree with progressive Mormons specifically, because they define themselves as Mormons who don't necessarily agree with the LDS church. It's just a difficult concept for us to swallow, because if you don't agree with the church, why do you insist on being a part of it? They probably have their reasons...it's complicated.
Anyway, that being the case, we thought it would be pretty funny if a progressive Mormon--i.e. someone who doesn't really like the LDS church--provided us with a cool arrangement of some LDS songs for our stake anniversary celebration. But! we were so horrible about how we said it in the first place (we didn't really mean anything by it; we just thought it was amusing, but that doesn't make it better), and then it occurred to us that what if Rose identifies as a progressive Mormon? That would make it even worse! And we didn't have time to discuss it because we were at our apartment and it was time to go! Aaaaaaaahhhh!
So even though we were able to convince ourselves that she's cool and probably wasn't offended either way, that one little thing hit the switch to our fear of people. We're just too afraid that people will be our friends for a while and then decide that you know what, it wasn't that great after all and actually I hate you a lot and don't want to talk to you ever. Apparently 2004 has done a lot more lasting damage than we care to ever think about for too long.
But the point is, we got onto one of our fear of people spirals, and even after talking about it, we couldn't really make it go away, so we just wanted to crawl deep, deep into our comfort zones and never come out until it was safe. Or until Gaston called to say he was on his way over. Or until next Sunday, when it was back to being In Charge. So we figured let's just go to bed and then we can lose all our troubles in work.
So we visited all the websites we like to visit before we turn the computers off for the night, but since we don't play Kingdom Hearts [chi] on Sundays, we had a little bit of extra time. We realized that the Otaku Mode Manga Translation Battle results should be announced any day now, so we went over there to see who won the trip to Japan so we could get on with our lives. If we were lucky, maybe we'd have won a tablet so I could show videos to my Primary class. (We have a Kindle Fire, but there's a complicated situation involved.)
So we went to the website, and there, finally they had announced the results! The grand prize winner had translated the same series we translated, and the names under the picture looked strangely familiar. Wait a second, those are our names!
My reaction was a lot like Rizzo's reaction in Muppet Christmas Carol, when they just got down from the harrowing flight to the past and he was so relieved...and a cat shows up. And he goes, "No." You have to say it in the right tone of voice though, so if you haven't seen Muppet Christmas Carol, I totally recommend it.
But the point is, it's a super exciting thing! ...But we were not excited, because of the long ordeal I just described. Well, that and a look at our schedule. Did I mention we agreed to a new series last week? I'm pretty sure I didn't, but I'm mentioning it now! Oh my goodness, we were so relieved not to get any surprise(ish) work this morning. So we kind of panicked.
Then three things happened to calm us down. First, we remembered that when we got to the computer last night, the wallpaper had a picture of Hyuga from Neo Angelique. Last time we went to Japan, we got the CD single of the opening theme from that anime at the Ikebukuro Animate, and it came with a collector's card, because it was a first print. And we got a card of Hyuga, who was our favorite of the main four guys! The trip to Japan was very stressful because of our natural timid personalities, but that card helped reassure us that it was all okay. And now our wallpaper was reminding us of that reassurance.
Second, Athena remembered Fantasmic!. Rumor has it, Fantasmic! at DisneySea is different than Fantasmic! at Disneyland, and we're not the types to just watch YouTube videos of things. We want to see it live! So now we have a little motivation.
Third and most importantly, we realized that the people who put on this contest haven't contacted us yet, so it's possible that they'll take it all back. Maybe it's all been a spoof the whole time! In other words, for now we're not counting chickens or freaking out about how having chickens is unreasonably terrifying.
Today I'm thankful for having a wonderful choir practice, the judges thinking favorably of our translation even if it might not really be the grand prize winner, finishing our first draft of Chaika 2 (that takes a little tiny bit of pressure off), the reassurance of Hyuga, and Athena scoring jumbo peanut butter cup cookies at Bread Day yesterday (those are helping, too).