panic over

Oct. 26th, 2011 04:02 pm
platedlizard: (Default)
the main college disbursment will be here in a day or two, hopefully, meaning I can get my meds and fill up my car and actually get my textbooks in a day or two. Plans for this semester, hire a Chinese tutor, and start taking violin lessons again. I might get a different teacher, nothing against the one I had but there's a violin teacher who also plays the erhu, and I really really want to learn how to play the er-hu as well and I'm hoping he might be willing to teach me in a year or two. I'm not out of the woods yet, but things are looking up!

Also, Nanowrimo starts in 5 days. TIME TO PANIC AGAIN OMG OMG OMG WAT hahaha /dies
platedlizard: (Default)
For Christmas I bought myself a Codabow. I didn't want anything too expensive, so I ordered a CodaBow Prodigy. I got a good deal on it too, $265 instead of the normal price of $295.

What I got today was a CodaBow Diamond NX, list price $395.

I don't think I'm going to say anything.
platedlizard: (Default)
For Christmas I bought myself a Codabow. I didn't want anything too expensive, so I ordered a CodaBow Prodigy. I got a good deal on it too, $265 instead of the normal price of $295.

What I got today was a CodaBow Diamond NX, list price $395.

I don't think I'm going to say anything.

YAY!

Jul. 22nd, 2009 06:10 pm
platedlizard: (Default)
My violin and my pen are back!

So I picked up my violin from the luthier today. It turns out that my soundpost is, in his words, a piece of junk. So he replaced it. I could see what he meant when he showed it to me. It was whittled, and kind of chewed up looking (and how does a soundpost get chewed up?) and, he said, it fit kind of loosely. It was also very thin, thin enough that had I kept it in there it could have cracked the instrument. So he replaced it and gave me a $20 discount on it. Total bill (including recutting the bridge) $70.

Then I went to Ringler's Pub, partly on the off chance my pen might still be there, and partly because the food and beer are good and it was happy hour. I asked if they had it, and they did! So the server got a $10 tip. It was a $70 pen, so very much worth the tip getting it back.

So I'm happy.

YAY!

Jul. 22nd, 2009 06:03 pm
platedlizard: (Default)
My violin and my pen are back!

So I picked up my violin from the luthier today. It turns out that my soundpost is, in his words, a piece of junk. So he replaced it. I could see what he meant when he showed it to me. It was whittled, and kind of chewed up looking (and how does a soundpost get chewed up?) and, he said, it fit kind of loosely. It was also very thin, thin enough that had I kept it in there it could have cracked the instrument. So he replaced it and gave me a $20 discount on it. Total bill (including recutting the bridge) $70.

Then I went to Ringler's Pub, partly on the off chance my pen might still be there, and partly because the food and beer are good and it was happy hour. I asked if they had it, and they did! So the server got a $10 tip. It was a $70 pen, so very much worth the tip getting it back.

So I'm happy.
platedlizard: (Default)
I lost my pen, my driver's license, and my favorite violin is in the shop.

GAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHH!!!!!!

My PEN. My pen is something I haven't talked about much on my journal. My pen is a purple waterman fountain pen I bought a year ago for $70. It is my favorite pen. I carry it with me everywhere. I FUCKING NEED THIS PEN. I write with it (duh) in my favorite notebook. I keep different types of INKS for it. I love it. It's like my security blanket and IT'S FUCKING MISSING!!!

I think I left it at Ringler's Pub when I went to have lunch there. I called them and no one's found it. I'm going to call them tomorrow if I can't find it at home, and then I'll probably drive over to find it. I am seriously almost in tears over this. I love that damn pen so much.

My DRIVERS LICENSE. Of less importance then my PEN, except that it means that if I want to buy alcohol (which I need because my PEN IS FUCKING MISSING) I'll have to dig up my passport. Phooey.

My VIOLIN. Yesterday my violin bridge collapsed and took my soundpost out with it. In theory I could have fucked around with it some more and maybe gotten them both up, but not before I probably damaged something. So I finally did the sensible thing and took it to a luthier (that's why I had lunch at Ringlers, heh). Goosman Fine Violins. Looks like a very nice shop. He said I can have it back Wednesday.

Interesting thing about my violin, he confirmed what I thought, that it was old (he didn't say how old, I was originally told about 100 years but with no maker's label who the hell really knows) and that it was refinished nicely. He also told me a few things I didn't know, like that the seam in the back had been opened at one point and then closed very neatly. And there were some open seams in the butt of the violin that were the result of age, basically the top and bottom had shrunk at different rates then the ribs so they no longer met. Basically the only thing I can with it is to keep an eye on it and whenever the gaps get big enough to slid a card through bring it in and get it reglued.

Oh, and the reason my bridge kept collapsing? Whoever put it on in the first place cut the feet wrong. So of course it was tilting forward and falling over all the time. So the feet have to be recut, which is going to cost me $35, and placing the soundpost properly (it has to be moved around to find the best sound) will cost $25-40. Which is why I'm crying about my pen, because if it is gone I can't afford to replace it for awhile.

So yeah. Here is me, screaming my fucking head off.
platedlizard: (Default)
And it's not my usual carpel tunnel either. That's on my right hand. THis is on my left.

You see, in elementary/middle school I played the violin. And for the last couple years I've been really wanting to play again, so last winter I went out and bought one. (Actually three, but lets not go there). And I have been practicing, probably not as often as I should, but at least a couple times a week. And one thing I've learned is that I was never taught the upper positions, only first. So, to correct that deficiency I purchased a guide for Third and Fifth position (I figure I'll learn 2nd, 4th, 6th, 7th, and if I'm really masochistic 8th at a later time). And it's funny, because the actual fingering isn't all that different then 1st, but my left wrist is screaming at me.

Not in that "Oh God something's WRONG" sort of way, no, it's in that "Oh hey, there are MUSCLES there! Who knew?" you get when you do a different exercise. Still fucking hurts and I can't play for more then a few minutes.

Still, my D-string is starting to sound really good. I haven't nailed 3rd on my G-string (go ahead and laugh, G-string), the fingering still sounds off. But boy does the D string sound nice. Can't wait to really learn the A and E strings.

The other reason I'm putting myself through this torture is because I have a fake book full of Beetles songs scored for the violin and I want to play them, but at least half requiring shifting into a higher position! Supposedly this is the 'easy' book... easy if you aren't a raw beginner coming back the violin after fifteen years away perhaps!
platedlizard: (Default)


Nice. This kid has some real talent.
platedlizard: (Default)
God, I wish had money.




ETA: and while I'm dreaming I would play it with this bow.

BULLSHIT!

Dec. 31st, 2008 12:13 am
platedlizard: (Default)
Bird Eyes!Antonio Stradivri 1716 "Le Messie" Violin 4/4.

Q: Hi is this item an original stradiravius or a copy. Kind regards Bambos Dec-31-08
A: Hi,it is an original stradiravius ,thanks!


WOW. BULLSHIT. I'm calling right here folks.

Here's why.

FIRST OF ALL, THEY'RE SELLING IT ON EBAY. Now, that's not to say that ebay doesn't have some fine, fine violins on it (i'm watching one or two of them, and let's just say that if things go my way I may be selling my latest acquisition and go for an upgrade) BUT if ANYONE has a goddamn real Antonio "Stradivri" that they want to sell they would be doing it on Sothebys. AND we'd be hearing about it on the goddamn fucking news. They go for MILLIONS of dollars. MILLIONS AND MILLIONS. Were talking BEING PUT ON EXHIBIT IN THE SMITHSONIAN type violins here.

SECOND OF ALL, THEY'VE GOT THE GODDAMN NAME WRONG. It's Antonio Stradivari, thank you very much.






Now, that's not to say that this particular instrument isn't pretty, because it is.The thing is, it's too pretty. Old violins don't look like that. They look used, worn. It's probably a copy, there are lot of them out there and 'Stradivari' is just about the only violin maker most non-string people know about. Which means that if someone's trying to con a beginner like, ahem, ME (not that this would con me, lol) THAT'S THE NAME THEY'D USE.

And I am NOT BUYING that an instrument from 1710whatever would be all shiny and new.

Let's look at a REAL Stradivari for a moment.

Image taken from here.



Okay, do you see the wear on the back toward the base and along the spine, it kind of looks like an upsidedown T? That's what happens when a violin is played, nicely, carefully, for centuries. The wear is caused by the violinists shoulder. As you can see, it is not super shiny like Mr. I'm A Real Stradivari, Really! above.

Also, note the chin rest on both instruments. That is a modern invention that was not used in Stradivari's time. If you look closely you can see wear under the real Stradivari's chin rest that came from the violinist's actual chin. There is no wear at all on the fake one.

You may be thinking perhaps it was restored and revarnished or something. I can tell you no, for one thing, many people believe that Stradivari's secret was in his varnish, if that were removed it would destroy the violin. Second of all, Stradivari used mostly spruce that was probably locally grown, NOT birdseye maple.

Anyways, TLDR, there are a bunch of lyin, cheatin scumbags on ebay.
platedlizard: (Default)
You know how I had said that there was something wrong with the G string? (go ahead, let your inner 12 year old snicker. G-string) Well, it wasn't just the G string, all of the strings, except the E string, sounded off. Sorta..dead. Like they should be flat, but my little tuner said they weren't. So finally I googled "violin care" and discovered a few things.

First of all, my bridge was off, apparently it had drifted back a couple millimeters with the previous owner. Its supposed to line up with the inner notches of the F holes, but instead it was behind them. Apparently this can happen during tuning, and if not corrected can lead to a cracked bridge or even cause the bridge to collapse, which can seriously damage the violin. Good thing I caught that and moved it back into place.

Second of all, according to this site violin strings need to be replaced every 6 months or so because the core wears out. Remember how I said my E string was the only one that sounded fine? That was because the first day I had broken it and replaced it with the E string from a set I had purchased as back up. I replaced the whole set and now it sounds good! Less like a cheap student violin and more like a, well, decent student violin from Czechoslovakia, which is where it was made (obviously not recently since that Czechoslovakia no longer exists, this is a good thing, older violins are typically better).

I think my sound post is slightly misplaced, but from the sound of it they're kinda hard to place properly in the first place. If I find I'm getting too much buzzyness I'll try to reset it, but not unless I have to.

The frog of the bow is cracked, although the horse hair is fine, even if it needs to be cleaned. I might try to superglue it for the time being, eventually it'll have to be replaced. It's just a cheap fiberglass bow anyways.

Hey Parents, do you remember that violin Sue gave me? The one we 'lent' out to Pastor Brain (which he NEVER RETURNED). I've been looking around and bows similar to the one with that violin go for $700 on Craigslist! Higher on Ebay! WTF! I'm pretty sure that violin was worth as much as that bow! I REALLY WISH I could have gotten that back from him. Damn.

My playing is improving daily. No squeakiness, at least, not much, lol. I'm up to doing quarter notes too. I'm ALMOST ready to start playing songs that have a page of music! lol
platedlizard: (Default)
I have the cold from hell, and it's crappy outside. The snow is still melting away, yesterday driving to my parents' house was like trying to drive up a slipNslid. Just awful. I have chains, but they didn't seem to do much, it's hard to get traction in slush.

Christmas was nice, Cousin David and his girlfriend came over. Sis cooked a goose (yum!), and I made wassail. I got lots of tea and mom found me some Noodler's ink for my fountain pen. I like this ink, it bonds with cellulose so that when you write on paper it won't bleed if the paper gets wet, and supposedly won't wash out with other stuff, which makes it harder for ID thieves to steal checks. Until it touches paper, though, it's water soluble, so if you get it on your clothing, fingers, etc it'll wash out. The ink came with a cheap clear plastic fountain pen, as well, which was nice since now I don't have to carry my favorite one around when I'm running around. If my purse got stolen I'd only lose the cheap one!

Anyways, I'm going to get a violin for myself off Craigslist. There's actually quite a few decent looking ones for about $200, maybe I should buy a couple and try selling one on ebay for more. (some of those violins are probably worth much more then $200, closer to 500- or eve $1000, that's not expensive by violin standards, but much more then what those folks are selling them for)

Anyways, other then trying to pick up a violin this weekend I'm not doing a damn thing until this cold from hell wears off. God, I hate this shit.

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