Pinewoods 2017 report

Jul. 16th, 2017 01:00 pm
sorcyress: Drawing of me as a pirate, standing in front of the Boston Citgo sign (Default)
[personal profile] sorcyress
Pinewoods 2017 report

If I were really good, I would try dividing it up into chunks of ESC, Session 1, and Session 21, but I'm not that good. So have a jumbled together report of my last two weeks. I'm not writing it in any sort of order, so the footnotes might beare all jumbled up.

AWESOME:
*So um redacted redacted redacted hour kissing on the dock redacted redacted. Also this is the second time in three months where I have taken photos of me kissing a cute girl and sent them to her girlfriend.

*Dave Wiesler is the absolute best at writing music. His bandleading night in session 1, I mostly couldn't actually dance due to a twingy ankle (and I am gentler about that when there's five more nights of dancing than I would be otherwise), but that meant I spent some good time just hiding behind the bandshell catnapping and listening to just fucking magnificent music. I want want desperate want a recording of his Joie de Vivre set, it was just *magical*.

*FOUR SQUARE ON THE RAFT IS THE NEW BEST GAME AT PINEWOODS! And of course, we invented/found this game and the weather immediately got grumpy and rainy and Scottish and no one wanted to go play in the water anymore so we never played again. But there was like an hour and a half of it on Sunday.

*Also redacted details but one of my favourite comets3 and I get to see each other at Pinewoods every year, and this year was just _super_ good for it. Also, yes, it is absolutely possible to fit two people into the single4 bed in Kitty Alone, you just have to be very friendly and accept that one of y'all might have the windowsill digging into their leg the whole night. Luckily no one is sleeping very long at camp.

*Fred is SUCH AN AWESOME HIGHLAND TEACHER! We covered two dances in two days during session 1, and then refined one of them and learned another two dances in session two. Somehow I have now reached the point where I was in the demo set for things, which is terrifying, considering that everyone else in the demo set is either Triona (who started at the same time as me but actually practices and is good at Highland) or people who've been competing for like fifteen years.

*I mostly did not go to any classes except Highland, but I did make it to the cross-step waltz class, which was really good! It had one variation that I'd never seen before, some more practice on grapevines (which I suuuuck at), and there was about a ten second "and also pivots exist" near the end which I managed to corner Keira and get actual info about and then I did some real pivots with Val and internalized them well enough to teach them to Stephen and Alex. Now, these are all three super competent dancers, but I still felt pretty proud of myself and will try to throw those in next time I lead cross-step.

*The hardest part about doing secret rehearsals for secret Abbots Bromley is then not whistling the tune for the next three hours and giving away the secret. Also, our fool was complimented both times on their ability to hit the triangle in an appropriate and not overwhelming manner. Alsoalso, the fact that the Abbots Bromley is traditionally taught to Scottish dancers by being dragged into the woods by a veritable wizard is basically the Best Thing. Alsoalsoalso, I don't know what you are talking about I was definitely not part of any of this weird English ritual nonsense.

*I GOT TO DRESS LIKE ZAPHOD BEEBLEBROX AND HIT ON EARTH PEOPLE FOR LIKE AN HOUR AND A HALF AND IT WAS AMAZING AND I HAD SO MUCH FUN IT WAS SO GOOD EVERYTHING IS SO GOOD!

GOOD:
*Spent like four hours in what felt kinda like a con panel where we talked about old drama (and I (re?)learned a story that's important for me to know and now I have a clearer picture instead of just details) and the progression from gamergate to trump supporters and a bit of just tragic personal history of a friend of mine. It was a cozy night! Sad that all the stories were sad, but the greater world is sad right now, and Callahan has an adage about the importance of shared pain.

*Had very _very_ low amounts of polydrama/jealousy going on. This doesn't *always* happen at Pinewoods, and I swear there's a lot of camp beyond kissing people, but when you consider that I actively resisted camp for at least two years before originally going because I didn't want to be a seventh wheel, it's cool to have a year where all the relationships were able to be content with each other.

*I taught a workshop about "SCD for Crew"! It was about an hour, and I went into it wanting to cover five main things: the five basic Scottish steps, quicktime pousettes, allemandes, at least one corner figure, and dancing something without cues. We got through all those things! It helps that crew tends to have a crazy high dance ability!

*Speaking of crew, there were two nineteen year olds who I spent time with, both of whom make me very confused since I'm pretty sure I was in no way that chill or competent when I was nineteen. I want to be friends with both of them and am not sure I am cool enough to be so, also they apparently told other people I was awesome which just ???!??!!?

Apparently I'm getting old enough to have people look up to me, which is kinda nice and also ??!??!???.

*RAPPER RAPPER RAPPER I GOT TO DO RAPPER AND IT'S MY FAVOURITE DANCE FORM AND GODDAMNIT I WANT TO FORM A RAPPER TEAM GUUAHHHHHHH. Okay I just looked it up and it's like £35 a sword but I'm actually weirdly okay with the idea of sometime dropping $230 on this once I have a Real Job in order to facilitate having a team I want to do rapper _that bad_.

*Also our rapper teacher tried Scottish for the first time at ESC, and he did well and it was very charming and fun, *and* our Scottish teacher tried Contra for the first time and she had fun and THIS IS WHAT ESC IS FOR AND THIS IS WHY IT'S THE BEST SESSION!

*During Scottish I had two separate moments where I felt the need to subtweet about someone and instead just went ahead and told him because that makes more sense and is less drama-inducing. Plus, I only have one ex-boyfriend who's since gotten married, so like, if I talk about feeling compersion towards him and his wife, that's not really subtle and he knows it's him.

(The second spoken subtweet involved the phrase "bad decision hot" and no I'm not telling you any more about it.)

*I had two separate trips to Little Long Pond, both excellent in their own way. The first involved taking newfriends Austin and Phoebe during ESC, at which point we found out that the canal was much lower than normal and we had to tie up our canoe and wade through (this was awesome). On our way back, we touched two separate bouys in regular long pond. It is worth noting that due to pub night exhaustion, we were definitely only going to touch the canoe, not get into it, and definitely not paddle clear to the other side of the lake.

The second time was jere7my and I kayaking, which meant we were able to get out and port the kayak over the little waterfall and then do the canal properly. We saw a frog, and a tiny turtle, and we chased a green heron a bit and then we saw AN OTTER!!!! jere7my took some pictures!

*For the Star Wars vs Star Trek ball, I had Lise do up my hair in exquisite Leia buns, and I wore glitter and my Leiaish dress. I looked very beautiful and the buns did not come out despite doing Scottish dancing and later stilt-walking.

*The number of people catching and using my pronouns was magnificent. Also, I'm quite amused by some friends asking if it was okay if they used "she-shit-they" as my pronoun, as it was inevitably what happened. I will absolutely accept sheshitthey as my pronoun, yes, as I have used it myself occasionally by accident.

(Misgendering yourself is weird.)

MEH:
*I had a job interview on changeover day between session 1 and session 2. It was...I mean, it was a phone interview and it only lasted about twenty minutes but I think I answered all of their questions well and I think I asked good questions of my own. I should be hearing back from them sometime this week upcoming maybe.

*Was in a ceilidh act attempting to hexify a Scottish square. It went solidly okay. Extra difficult in that one of our people didn't show up so I pulled my dance-sister Connie in on absolutely zero warning. I think this would make a better workshop than ceilidh for the future.

BAD:
*Fucked up both my acts in the session 1 ceilidh, neither in ways anyone else would notice or care about. Felt...really bummed out about it, and got super quiet and brainwarped, which eventually culminated in me vanishing for a long while and eventually sobbing on the dock for a bit at one AM, because that's kinda what you do at Pinewoods at least once.

*I always feel a little weird that I basically never go to classes at Pinewoods. I think I pretty consistently average 1.5 classes a day or less, and inevitably the bulk of that is either Highland or Rapper.

*People seemed pleased by my classes on basic SCD technique during ESC, but I very much did not. I don't think I prepared well enough for them or did a good enough job teaching, and I especially fucked up the last day something thorough (in no small part to the complete lack of sleep beforehand). I suspect a lot of this is me being Too Hard on myself, but I also suspect that me being Too Hard on myself counts as bad even if sucking at teaching doesn't.

*Speaking of rapper, I managed to hit someone I like and respect very much in the face with a rapper sword because sometimes this sort of shit happens but also god_damnit_. She was very gracious.

*I managed to put my open water bottle into my bag at one point, which was a Dumb Idea. My camera got the brunt of the damage --it's completely broken, despite spending most of a week in a tub of rice (thank you crewwww). So I'll have to look into a new digital camera, siiiigh.

UGLY:
I am really sad that I have to put any notes into this category, because this is significantly worse than the bad category. But there you have it.

*There was a pretty blatant transphobic joke made by the bandleader and two of the musicians Wednesday night. Like, two dudes dressing up as women, being introduced as "our guest musicians [feminized versions of their names]" by the bandleader and a lot of wink-wink-nudge-nudge laughter involved. It was not okay, and I'm not looking forward to having to fight at the next TMC2 meeting about how this was Not Okay and how we need to explain that to the people involved.

(But I'm looking even less forward to being a part of a community where transphobic jokes are able to be the norm.)

*************

Overall I had a REALLY REALLY good time, which is pretty typical for me. I enjoyed myself and played games and saw and made good friends and fucked about in a canoe and swam and so much dancing!

I am already looking forward to next year. <3

~Sor
MOOP!

1: ESC = English Scottish Contra session at Pinewoods! Also called ESCape. Session 1 and Session 2 = the two official Scottish sessions at Pinewoods.

2: TMC is the Teaching and Music Committee of the Boston RSCDS branch. RSCDS is the Royal Scottish Country Dance Society. I'm a part of TMC both naturally and because someone from the Highland Ball needs to attend their meetings. We're the peeps who pick the MCs, Musicians, and Teachers for events like Pinewoods.

3: Comet is a term starting to appear in some branches of the poly community. It refers to someone who briefly comes into your life on a periodicish basis, and who you don't really date or communicate much with in between, but are always happy to pick back up where you left off. This particular comet started as my "James Dean relationship"3.a, and I adore him something fierce.

3.a: Live fast, die young, leave a pretty corpse. We went from zero to sexytimes in about a date and a half, we broke up after six months (both knowing it was coming; he was moving far away), we stayed friends. And sometimes more than friends.

4: Did you know that there is a name for the size of bed smaller than twin? Yeah, it's single. Singles are _very_ small.
seedarklyxero: SDXeroEye with glow (Default)
[personal profile] seedarklyxero
Welcome to SeeDarkly Sunday DisCOVERies:
a weekly exploration of goth, industrial, & dark alternative cover songs!
First time here? Click here for details from first entry.

Time for another Third Sunday Throwback to the 20th Century, delving into the archives to dig out a nostalgic dance-floor filler from the late 80's built on the bones of an early 70's candy-pop cult relic:

Renegade Soundwave - Biting My Nails (Geneviève Waïte)

Geneviève Waïte was a model and actress from South Africa whose successes earned her status as something of an "international underground star" in the 60's and 70's. After her starring role in the 1968 film Joanna and a couple of pictorials for Playboy magazine, she married John Phillips of The Mamas & the Papas. It was in collaboration with him as a her co-songwriter and producer that she recorded her 1974 solo album, Romance Is On The Rise. The single released from the album was only distributed in France and featured two tracks: Love Is Coming Back on side A and Biting My Nails on side B. Waïte went on to perform the A-side track in a couple of films, including the 1976 sci-fi drama, The Man Who Fell to Earth (starring David Bowie, with whom it's said she was intended to co-star, but she had to decline due to commitments on another project.) The album and single were said to have been received favorably over all, though neither actually sold particularly well. And while the A-side of her single seemed to be exposed more prominently, it was the B-side that inspired a number of covers. One such cover was recorded by Tim Curry in 1976 (shortly after he appeared in The Rocky Horror Picture Show) for an album he never released. It was later included on Songs From The Vaults (A Collection Of Rocky Horror Rarities), the fourth of a four-disc RHPS collection released in 1993.

Waïte's style may well be one of the earliest examples of a type of campy saccharine European mod-pop, possibly laying foundations for later eccentric artists like perhaps Laurie Anderson, Cyndi Lauper, and others. That alone makes it seem a curious pick for a punkish hip-hop industrial dub trio from out of London, even more curious that any one of them actually owned her album. Renegade Soundwave (aka "RSW"), comprised of Gary Asquith, Danny Briottet, and Carl Bonnie, released their cover of Biting My Nails as their first single with Mute Records in 1988. It was later included on their first album, Soundclash in 1989. In one interview, Asquith recalled that he had played Waïte's album for Bonnie at his flat one day. Later Bonnie and Briottet came to him with an arrangement they'd developed with Waïte's song in mind and thought the lyrics would make a great fit. Their version is an eclectic assortment of samples that include an industrial drill, a fire alarm, a guitar riff from Jimmy Page, and drum loops from KC & the Sunshine Band. RSW also replaced Waïte's "Oooh Oooh" with recognizable brass sampled from Eddie Floyd's Knock on Wood. There are some lyrical differences as well. Instead of Waïte's late-track somewhat spastic soliloquy, RSW inserts two original verses following the general cadence of the first two. Additionally they replaced one line of an earlier verse with something a little modernizing and self-referential.
Their cover also appears on the soundtrack of the independent 1991 comedy, London Kills Me.
In truth, it wasn't much more of a commercial hit than the original but the track nonetheless was a huge dance-floor banger, in time becoming a classic.

...pation. ;)

The Cover:



The Original:



Next week:
We'll take another look at a song featured in a previous Third Sunday Throwback, presenting the first in a recurring series: Four by Four, where we'll explore four OTHER COVERS of that track. Which one of 116 prior songs will we revisit? Well for the most current version, it has to do with a certain blonde from the coldest city...

Comments, suggestions, discussions, etc... welcome!
(You do NOT need a Dreamwidth account to comment, but all comments are screened for spam prevention.)

I'll spin next on the last Friday this month. Check my schedule for details. ^_^

Explore the darkness,
-Xero

Previous DisCOVERies

Jul 09 - You Shriek - Invisible Sun (The Police)
Jul 02 - Urgess - Spider-Man Theme (Paul Francis Webster and Robert "Bob" Harris)
Jun 25 - Sirus - My Own Summer (Deftones)
Jun 18 - Null Device - What's On Your Mind (Pure Energy) (Information Society)
Jun 11 - Marilyn Manson - I Put A Spell On You (Screamin' Jay Hawkins)

Directory of All Previous DisCOVERies
seedarklyxero: SDXeroEye with glow (Default)
[personal profile] seedarklyxero
Welcome to SeeDarkly Sunday DisCOVERies:
a weekly exploration of goth, industrial, & dark alternative cover songs!
First time here? Click here for details from first entry.

As summer began a couple of weeks ago, I presented a cover that cried out against the unbearable heat and light from our day-star. After all, as goths, to paraphrase Darkness from Legend, sunlight is our destroyer! (Such drama, I know, but we ARE a pale lot.) This week's Second Sunday Slowly downtempo cover is only titled along that theme of shrouding our solar enemy. In truth, while perhaps as apocalyptic as My Own Summer in some ways, this track has a very different objective and a far more political meaning.:

You Shriek - Invisible Sun (The Police)

The Police released Invisible Sun in the UK as the first single of their fourth album, Ghost in the Machine, in September 1981. The album concept hinged on ideas inspired in part by Arthur Koestler's 1967 book, The Ghost in the Machine, which explored the human psychology behind self-destructive inclinations. (The phrase "ghost in the machine" is believed to have first been used by British philosopher Gilbert Ryle in his 1949 book, The Concept of Mind, in which he used it to critique the theories of "mind-body dualism" as presented by René Descartes.)
This track of the album was written while lead singer Sting was living in Northern Ireland during the Belfast hunger strikes in a time commonly referred to as "The Troubles." Sting had said the song was about "the lurking violence of those streets, patrolled by armored cars, haunted by fear and suspicion, and wounds that would take generations to heal." Combined with drummer Stewart Copeland's concerns about the bombings that had killed thousands in his hometown of Beirut during the Lebanese Civil War, the song's central message seemed to be one of hope in the face of dark times when the light you can not see will come, as Sting put it, "at the end of the tunnel."
It's reported that the BBC banned the song (possibly due to lyrics about the ArmaLite rifle, a weapon utilized heavily by the Provisional IRA) or its video (which included war-torn scenes from the conflicts in Ireland) but since several sources contradict each other, the extent of that ban is unclear. And while the single was not released in the U.S., MTV gave its video substantial airplay.
Needless to say there is a lot of complicated political history attached to the song, which was regarded at the time as the darkest of their tracks thus far.

You Shriek, the Boston based industrial/darkwave trio, released their second full-length album, Unreal Cities, in 2002. It includes their even moodier version of Invisible Sun. The band had started their career with a cover of Bela Lugosi's Dead. Later they did a cover of Joy Division's Warsaw and have since done a cover of Public Image Limited's Ease. In 2012 they released the five-track EP, Hagiography I, featuring covers of deep-cuts from Sisters of Mercy, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Dead Can Dance, Cocteau Twins, and again, Bauhaus. If they have a particular inspiration for having done Invisible Sun, it may well say so on limited editions of the album which came in handmade, cloth-bound books. (There were only 200 made and despite moving in similar or adjacent social circles as the band, I don't have one to verify.) You Shriek's version strips away the reggae influences that permeate The Police's new wave sound, leaving it starker through the chorus and darker over all.
Given the state of things in our world today, if this is a song meant to remind us that there is eventually an end to hardships, let's hope we haven't only just entered our metaphorical tunnels and are close to the other side.

The Cover:



The Original:



Next week:
Our Third Sunday Throwback to the 20th century will reveal just what "she" said when "she" came up to the South African model from the 70's or the 80's dub-industrial trio who covered her. Who is "she?" Who is the model? Who are they? Waïte for it... 'cause if I told you now, how could I possibly build the antici..... (pay off on that tease might also surprise you!)

Comments, suggestions, discussions, etc... welcome!
(You do NOT need a Dreamwidth account to comment, but all comments are screened for spam prevention.)

I spin late this month and details can, as always, be found on my schedule where I'll also post any changes/additions should they arise. ^_^

Explore the darkness,
-Xero

Previous DisCOVERies

Jul 02 - Urgess - Spider-Man Theme (Paul Francis Webster and Robert "Bob" Harris)
Jun 25 - Sirus - My Own Summer (Deftones)
Jun 18 - Null Device - What's On Your Mind (Pure Energy) (Information Society)
Jun 11 - Marilyn Manson - I Put A Spell On You (Screamin' Jay Hawkins)
Jun 04 - Siouxsie Sioux - These Boot Are Made For Walkin' (Nancy Sinatra)

Directory of All Previous DisCOVERies

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