Self-Isolation Diaries – Week 75

Greetings, Internet! I hope everyone’s staying as safe and sane as can be. This week, I read a bunch of things in German for my dissertation, listened to a ton of Sarah Jarosz, and tried not to be sad about the Mets. Daily summaries below!

Day Five Hundred and Nineteen (8/13/21)

  • Went to Push to Walk and am now very physically tired. In other words, had a great workout.
  • My mother and I picked up some Szechuan food and ice cream. I am so full.
  • Answered hella emails. Spent another hour on that German article.
  • Practiced clean and harsh vocals. It took a while to warm up to the point where I could scream in a manner that felt mostly acceptable, but I think I can record something for my vocal coach tomorrow.
  • Oh, Mets. You were so close. <sobs quietly>
  • Total Times Outside: One Hundred and Two!
  • Total videos watched from other YouTubers: 0.
  • Currently feeling: I kind of want to start a band. But also I want to just do solo acoustic sets. I’m conflicted.
  • Currently looping: Sarah Jarosz’s “Pay It No Mind.”

Day Five Hundred and Twenty (8/14/21)

  • Woke up feeling very sore from yesterday’s workout.
  • Did the FES cycle. Watched the first two episodes of the final season of “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” (Nine-Nine!).
  • Finished trudging through that one German article! Now I have two more articles to get through. Egad.
  • Tried listening to the “Too Scary, Didn’t Watch” podcast, thinking that it would be a good way for me to hear plots of horror movies without having to watch them and have nightmares. Ten minutes into the podcast, and all I learn is that one of the podcast hosts has a very heavy cat (21.5 pounds, in case you were curious). Also, two of the podcast hosts didn’t watch the movie, because they were too scared. I think that’s fine for the podcast listeners, but the hosts? Come on, I need people who know the movie to tell me about it. And they all have generic podcast voices, so I can’t tell who is saying what. Also, after ten minutes into this podcast, one of them says, “Time for trivia!” Trivia? TELL ME THE PLOT OF THE MOVIE. I have clearly been spoiled by “Binge Mode,” which jumps RIGHT INTO THE PLOT within the first few minutes. I learn enough about the hosts of “Binge Mode” (and their cats) interspersed throughout bits of story plot. They have watched, rewatched, and reread the material about which they are speaking. They are the experts. I want to learn from the experts. I cannot stress that enough. Thank you for coming to my TED talk.
  • Watched the finale for “The Bad Batch.” I continue to adore the Star Wars animated shows so much more than the live action prequels.
  • Recorded some screaming for my vocal coach. I still have a ways to go with incorporating screams into songs, but I think it’s better than it was last week.
  • Mets, why.
  • Total videos watched by other YouTubers: 17.
  • Currently feeling: Was feeling so sad this morning. Ever have a day where you just want to be lazy with someone (if someone else is being lazy, too, then there’s significantly less guilt), only to realize you don’t actually have someone to be lazy with? So then you just fill the day with productivity, which isn’t a total loss, because productivity, but still. 
  • Currently looping: Sarah Jarosz’s “House of Mercy.” Am I going through what is most likely going to be her tour setlist so that I’m familiar with her discography? Maybe.

Day Five Hundred and Twenty-One (8/15/21)

  • Dissertation research day! Capitularies, ahoy! Also some really cool stuff from a ninth-century abbot.
  • Took a break to watch the first episode of the third season of “Titans.” So far, looks like it’ll be a solid season.
  • Hey, remember how I thought I’d found my scream last week? Yeah, I, um, lost it. I forgot what I did to get it, and now it’s gone, and I suck at everything.
  • I know how to add to this awful feeling. I’m going to watch the Mets get hammered 14-4 by the Dodgers to the sound of A-Rod’s voice.
  • Oh, now the Mets’ position players are pitching. Actually, I’m okay with this. You go, Kevin Pillar!
  • Total videos watched by other YouTubers: 0. Oh well.
  • Currently feeling: I want to start a band. I want it to have a ‘90s alt chick rock vibe. Taylor Swift meets Veruca Salt. I have band name ideas. But also I feel like I’m a garbage musician who can’t get my act together because I’m juggling ten things at once and have no business starting anything. I should just stay in my lane and write this dissertation (which is likely suffering because it doesn’t have all of my attention).
  • Currently looping: The Secret Sisters’ “Water Witch” feat. Brandi Carlile. This came up in a Sarah Jarosz-related Spotify playlist, and dang, it’s awesome.

Day Five Hundred and Twenty-Two (8/16/21)

  • Did the FES cycle. Watched an episode of “Legends of Tomorrow.” They bowled to save the planet. I love this show.
  • There is a symphonic metal cover of “Jenny of Oldstones” featuring Melissa Bonny and I am SO HERE FOR IT.
  • Yeah, my harsh vocal coach said that my screams are sitting too low. Could cause swelling over time. <sighs> I’m afraid to practice because I know poor technique leads to poor results, and I still can’t figure out technique, so why try when you know you’re just going to solidify bad technique?
  • Went outside to try a new food place. ‘Twas yummers.
  • My friend wrote a book! I just got my pre-ordered copy today =)
  • Okay, I tried to practice metal vocals. They somehow sound worse, AND now my throat hurts. I guess you could say I deserved that.
  • At least I got to practice some guitar.
  • The key to watching games on the west coast is to attempt to go to bed while the Mets have the lead. I missed the window. D’oh. I blame Kris Bryant.
  • Total times outside: One Hundred and Three!
  • Total videos watched by other YouTubers: 3
  • Currently feeling: Let’s face it, I’m far more likely to lean on my clean singing. The harsh singing is just because I want to be the most versatile vocalist possible (you know, for when there are no academic jobs available and I have to earn a living doing something part-time). I’m not sure I’ll ever be as vocally versatile as I hope I can be.
  • Currently looping: The Dark Side of the Moon’s cover of “Jenny of Oldstones” of course!

Day Five Hundred and Twenty-Three (8/17/21)

  • Went to Push to Walk! Will likely be sore in the morning.
  • My mother and I went back to my apartment for some peach pie. Mmm…pie.
  • Thought I might have time for some musical stuff or dissertation prepwork, but ended up answering emails. Alas.
  • Dang, this Mets game is going by quickly.
  • Total Times Outside: One Hundred and Four!
  • Total videos watched by other YouTubers: 0. I’m behind, I know.
  • Currently feeling: That feeling when you’re not sure whether you have enough primary sources to begin your chapter. But also, you should start writing.
  • Currently looping: Sarah Jarosz’s “Orange and Blue” virtual live performance feat. John Leventhal.

Day Five Hundred and Twenty-Four (8/18/21)

  • Ever load up a cart full of chocolate goodness, and then see how expensive the shipping is and then empty the entire cart? No? Just me?
  • Harsh vocal lesson! Guess who did a healthy grunt and then immediately couldn’t replicate it. <sobs quietly to self> The question is whether I should do another few lessons to keep with this, take a break for a month or two (which would definitely save me a bit), or just quit. Quitting feels gross. Someday I will look back on all of my blog posts and realize that I continue with the things I complain about the most. I think I complain because I care. This is too much introspection for a Wednesday night.
  • Recorded a cover for tomorrow rather hastily. And for some reason I prefer the phone audio to the audio from my fancy condenser microphone, so that’s weird. I had planned on posting something else related to a collaboration, but my collaborator is running a bit late with the material I need to listen to so I can record my own parts. Alas.
  • Oh my goodness, the Mets won an away game in extra innings. Somebody pinch me. Oh, DeGrom’s getting shut down for the season? Yeah, no, this feels about right.
  • Total videos watched by other YouTubers: 9. I’m still behind.
  • Currently feeling: Going to bed a bit late tonight because I was getting the video ready for tomorrow. I just can’t bring myself to miss a self-imposed deadline sometimes.
  • Currently looping: I listened to Sarah Jarosz’s livestream performance/mini concert from last year. I wondered how she was able to get such a nifty home setup, and then at some point in the concert she mentioned she was performing from a studio, and then everything made sense. I’d love to perform in a studio someday.

Day Five Hundred and Twenty-Five (8/19/21)

  • Did the FES cycle. Am all caught up with “Legends of Tomorrow,” and the episode was murder mystery themed, and after going through a nightmare of a murder mystery scenario, the type A co-captain was like, “Let’s do that again! I think I can beat it this time!” This cast is precious. For context, the type A co-captain was the first to be killed. It’s a strange show, but I love it.
  • Posted my raw cover of Sara Bareilles’ “Simple and True” from “Little Voice.” In a world where Time Turners existed, this would have a bassline, and possibly an electric guitar.
  • My mother’s here! She baked a blueberry pie =)
  • Therapy!
  • Accidentally stumbled upon a new lead for my chapter, and now I’m going through all of these articles and saving a bunch of them to read at some point next week. Egad. There’s so much to go through, but in a good way.
  • Total videos watched by other YouTubers: 25. I think I’m caught up?
  • Currently feeling: Today was super productive, so of course I’m tired, but like, good tired.
  • Currently looping: Halestorm’s “Back From the Dead.” That’s right, there’s new Halestorm! All hail the majesty that is Lzzy Hale!

Thanks so much for reading! Stay safe, get vaccinated, and go check out my friend’s book! She’s a brilliant storyteller.

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