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Andy

United States

Writing is but one of the ways a quiet mind can scream at the World for its stupidity, but the only way an Introvert can truly open the eyes of the World and prove it.
- From an Introvert's Mind to an Extrovert World.

Message from Writer

I'm one of the most introverted people you will ever meet, so if I don't warm up immediately, its not your fault.

8 Minutes, and No Second Chances

January 15, 2016

FREE WRITING

0
    Even when you share the weight of a 2-by-4 framed, wooden and canvas panel, your shoulder burns. Your fingers ache from gripping wood, praying you don't slip as you walk in a dead silence with the rest of the group. No one smiles. Parents pass, and other bands give calls of good luck; but no one dared replied. Straight faces. Three lines. The half of the band forced to carry the four segments of red tarp, the other half forced to bear the weight of the panels; the guard in their dresses, the battery shifting their drums to avoid hitting someone and so they can see in front of them. Our director stops in the tunnel, and we stop behind him as the current band finishes. Everyone's full of nerves, but no one shows them as the other band leaves the field; the Drum Major staying behind for the quick interview with the announcer. Then they leave, and our name echoes off of the walls. 
    The first timer starts. 5 minutes to set up. Hushed whispering as we get panels to the sidelines, the other half with the band scrambles to get the tarp in place; everyone silently prays nothing is messed up as we walk to our spots. The timer is cleared, set to eight minutes, and our Drum Majors Salute the judges and the announcer as he gives the signal to start. We get the familiar eight count start, and for the 50th time that season we hear the familiar piano introduction. And we just perform.
    Its an exhilarating feeling. Even if you marched onto the field full of nerves, once you start performing, going through the same routine that you've memorized since the end of July; nerves disappear. Your lungs burn from using too much oxygen to fill up an instrument instead of breathing. Your leg ache from keeping a straight knee, your feet cramp from constant movement and no relief. Sweat stings your eyes and drips down your neck, and spit makes your fingers slick as your mouth goes dry from infinite playing. Pain before pleasure some might say, but its so much more than that. 
    Marching band isnt't like the football team. A marching band will practice early in the morning, repeating the same motions until they're right; five days a week, and one day with extra hours late in the evening so you always pray you don't end up with homework. We all have to work together; if one person screws up or just doesn't care everyone around them could get hurt. We don't have extra people on the sidelines to fill in, if someong gets hurt or faints during a performance we don't get to stop and ask if they're alright, there's no pause to get them off of the field. We continue, or there is no chance at placing. If we get a bad start we can't stop and begin again, we have to keep going, fully aware that our score will be lower than we wanted it to be. 
    But doing well is an adrenaline rush. We leave on a performance high, knowing that we did the best we ever did. We have those eight minutes to show that we are capable of doing what we can do and for a small town like mine, its a chance to put ourselves back onto the map. 

But those eight minutes are all a band gets, and you don't get second chances.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SNrbis0ijso <---- (This was the video of the 2015 3A state competition that my band went too, and won; which is why I decided to finally write this.)

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  • January 15, 2016 - 9:43am (Now Viewing)

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