Wednesday, March 19, 2008

What happens if I blog about a blog on which my blog got blogged about?

I feel like it should create some kind of weird feedback loop in cyberspace.

Anyway: This is not really me blogging about a blog--that is just sort of fun to say. I have some fantastic friends. This is about one of them, who happens to have a blog, who I don't think I mention enough in general, but whom I do count among my close friends: May, the brilliant writer, the enviably-fantastic dresser, the fierce mover-through-life, the future tambourine girl when Jenjen and I finally get together the band we keep talking about, is one of the women that I grew up with in the Hawai'i Youth Opera chorus.

[Important aside about that chorus: HYOC, which is like a second family for me and the entire reason I could ever call myself a musician and ever got any work as a singer, is a community choir in my hometown of Honolulu that was originally founded to supply children for productions at the Hawaii Opera Theater. Under the direction of Nola Nahulu, who is pretty much superhuman, and a really excellent staff, the choir became a place where we learned a classical Western musical canon but also studied classical Hawaiian pieces. I joined when I was twelve years old and left at 18, but if I could have stayed in it forever somehow, carried it with me to New York or left a part of myself in Honolulu singing and lomilomi-ing my peers, I am certain I would have. In that choir, I traveled all over the US and to Europe, stood and sat and sang through hours of rehearsal, and bumped through adolescence in the company of Brahms and Beamer, Lili'u and Lully. We were treated like working professionals; we learned as much about respect and discipline as we did about theory and performance. When I see people, even after two or ten years, that I know through HYOC, it's like no time has passed--we are as familiar and affectionate with each other as if we had been visiting weekly through all that time. We fall out of touch routinely, but we are nevertheless connected through our shared history. We are college roommates; we are co-counselors; we are sometimes, unashamedly, co-dependent. We are calabash aunties to one another's children and we stand up at each other's weddings; we cook each other dinners and worry over each other's health and romantic choices. We are sisters and mothers and daughters to each other. We wonder together over how to state the importance that the choir has had in our lives. We can't, really. My memories from those years in my life are so colored by how deeply and unquestioningly I loved my chorus family that I can't even imagine who or where I would be without them.]

So, back to May: May is one of those beautiful people whom I don't get to see enough but when I do see I wish I could see all the time. She is smart and funny and kind; somebody should write a television show where she is the heroine. Also, she has a fantastic wardrobe. The thing about May is that she was a little girl to me for the longest time: in sixth grade through high school, I was always two years older than her, which in teenage years is practically a whole generation. When we both ended up in New York City after college and I met up with her, I was sort of astonished to meet this lovely, poised, citydwelling adult. Now that we're both officially grownups, I'm so happy to count her among my good friends. She moved away from New York a few years ago, to the Bay Area, and sadly just about when I made it up to California she moved back to New York. I'm happy to have been able to share New York with many of my fellow HYOC graduates: May, Jenjen, Hina (with whom I discovered New York, from our impossibly tiny dormitory room on Broadway), Lisa, Amy: but I am sad that May and I are switching places instead of getting excited to live in the same place. But hope--that someday we will all find it in ourselves to be happy in the same area--springs eternal.

My dear friend M, who is moving to Amsterdam (why must the world be so big? why must so many wonderful places be so far apart?) is the person who suggested to me that I start this blog, as a way of keeping in touch with her. I am so happy that M has suggested this for us, and I am happy that my May has her blog and I can keep close to her through it as well.

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