This one Band Camp... (OOC Post)

I believe that this is the first time I have ever made an Out Of Character (OOC) post here in "au Courant". But, my human is moved to do so, as she looks outside at the sunny, breezy, August-in-Michigan, beautiful day.

Every year, at this time in August, I always feel there is somewhere that I am supposed to be. My feet feel like they need to be moving, and my hands feel empty. That is because every late August from 1984 to 1991 I was being ground into the asphalt of some parking lot, somewhere... at Band Camp.

I've mentioned many, many times on air on Radio Riel that I am a former Band Fag. And I use the term "Band Fag" as a complete badge of honor, not as a pejorative! Those of you out there that are Band know what I'm talkin' about! :-)

I often joke in RL that being so involved in Marching Band for so many years ruined me for working in the corporate world, because even though you constantly strive for excellent individual performance, you are ultimately working towards the goal of an excellent group performance. You are a part of the Ensemble - and I guess that is how I still live my life to this day.

I marched as a member of the Color Guard for 3 years in High School (spinning Flag) and for 5 years in College (spinning Rifle). I am lucky that every year at my University's Homecoming, the Band invites its former members back to play with them as the "Alumni Band". Over the past 16 years, I have hauled my Rifle out of mothballs about 8 times and put myself back on the football field for an afternoon. It is beyond freaky how we all just fall right back into rehearsal mode - like we never left!

2003 WMU Bronco Alumni Band
(do you see your Duchess? :-) )

So, to honor my inner Band is a clip of the 2006 WMU Bronco Marching Band singing our Alma Mater. It makes me smile to see that they still do that now...just like we used to at the end of every game 20 years ago. :-) And it still makes me cry...

The Western Michigan University Alma Mater

Western we sing to you
Brown and Gold

Western we bring to you
Faith untold

You challenge and inspire
Your hope is our desire

We sing to you our Alma Mater
Brown and Gold

Thank you Caledon - I have not felt this much of a "part" of something since my Marching Band days! :-)


Hotspur O'Toole said…
Certainly. First row, second from right. Non?
Hotspur O'Toole said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
Gabrielle Riel said…
Mais oui! Of course it was a bit of a giveaway as I am holding a Rifle. ;-)
Mitsu Figaro said…
I never had the Band Camp thing as a choir girl. Or..'Choir Jock' as i called it in my school time. I earned my Varsity Letter in it, so i took the irony and ran with it. *evil grin*

But the principle is the same. Invidual practice but still a group effort. If my health problems hadn't been so bothersome, i'd be back singing in a heartbeat. Unfortunately its a lot harder to reform choirs than it is bands. Voices change after a number of years.
Fuzzball Ortega said…
Marching band: Clarinet, Saxophone, Percussion

Concert band: Bassoon, Bass Clarinet, Alto Clarinet

Course, this was back in the early 80's, probably could relearn it all if I had to.
I spotted you immediately as well. I, too, have so many wonderful memories as part of marching and concert bands in high school, and hope to see some of my band friends this coming weekend as I go home to celebrate by (gulp) 20th high school reunion. School would have been extremely dull without band competitions, football games, basketball games, etc, etc.

Marching band: flute, trumpet, mellophone.

Concert band: flute

Jazz band: flute, alto sax
Daphne Daehlie said…
Wow - how fun a reunion would be! I still have my practice flag from HS in the closet and my flute (with my HS colors wrapped in ribbons around the case handle) under my bed. I work in an engineering firm dealing with blueprints and I sometimes find myself unconsiously spinning a cardboard shipping tube around the office as if the flag were in my hands again. Do you ever find that if you are walking to music, you always have the beat with your left foot? HAHA!
Thank you for sharing! It is always nice to know others are as nostalgic about their band days as I am.
ëarendil said…
Salut Gabrielle,
pleased to see you here... well the cat I am tried to find you on the picture but it seems that my animal instinct left me... Peut-être donnes-tu des indices sur le post, mais pour tout avouer lire tout en anglais après une journée de travail c'est un peu dur :)
Reminds me "where is Charly" books, i'm sure it exists in every country :)
Hotspur O'Toole said…
I've used band-aids before, does that count?
ëarendil said…
hm, as I didn't guess I would say no, you're disqualified :) Can I be the winner ?