Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Beauty and Joshua Bell

I had to share this...

I wrote this to my kids and important friends....

but it is important for everyone to read...

Several years ago on an annual vacation trip back and forth to Nantucket, MA,(I think we must have been coming from Indianapolis to Boston) ... Paul's (my husband's) airline seat was next to an elderly gentleman who was carrying a violin case as his carry on baggage.

Somehow, Paul talked with the man and found out that he was Joshua Bell's father and he was carrying a violin bow to his son. The value of that bow was over $100,000...

Actually I can't remember the price he told Paul, but it was a lot for one part of a violin ensemble, I thought!

At that time, I really did not know Joshua Bell as a violinist either. Paul, who walked every day with his friend, John, had heard of Joshsua Bell because John's son is a gifted violinist. Somehow at least one of their conversations in the early morning hours, walking, had been about what a great violinist Joshua Bell was.

Amazingly, after moving to North Carolina recently, there was a concert at the Brevard School of Music, which is about 8 miles down the road from our house. Brevard is a small town in North Carolina, but has a wonderful School of Music. There was a concert advertised with violinist, Joshua Bell.

I really had seriously considered going, but it was at the time when I was alone in North Carolina with all my animals, and my husband, Paul, was in Illinois finishing up - driving the bus. We owned 2 houses and money was tight. I really only knew 5 people in the area and wasn't sure if any of them wanted to spend such a large amount of money for a violin concert. I really didn't know these new neighbors well at all.

I can't even remember how much the ticket cost, $35 or $65, but it just seemed like so much for one ticket for an hour or two of music, alone, being a stranger, a newcomer, in the area. So I didn't go.

Now I read this article from a blog that I like to read written by Dean Shareski, that shows a video and the accompanying article from the WASHIGNTON POST...

I should have gone to the concert....

At the end of your life, you will not remember all the things you did, but all the things you didn't do... Make sure that list is not long!
MOM aka Faye

Here is the text of Dean Shareski's BLOG mentioned above.

If you want to see the video, you will need to go to the link above for the Washington Post article.

(hmm. maybe I will try to embed the link to the video... a new try on my blog here!)

Joshua Bell video

Sep 1, 2008 2:25 AM
Do you have time for beauty?
from Ideas and Thoughts from an EdTech by (Dean Shareski)

HE EMERGED FROM THE METRO AT THE L’ENFANT PLAZA STATION AND POSITIONED HIMSELF AGAINST A WALL BESIDE A TRASH BASKET. By most measures, he was nondescript: a youngish white man in jeans, a long-sleeved T-shirt and a Washington Nationals baseball cap. From a small case, he removed a violin. Placing the open case at his feet, he shrewdly threw in a few dollars and pocket change as seed money, swiveled it to face pedestrian traffic, and began to play.

The rest of the story goes on to reveal that world renowned violinist Joshua Bell peformed on a priceless Stradivarius as hundreds passed by barely noticing. While his concerts command prices over $100 a seat, he made $32 in just under an hour. The article details this experiment and offers some interesting ideas into human psychology.

For me it reminds me that so much of life is hidden in plain sight and we too often we aren’t paying attention.

Each passerby had a quick choice to make, one familiar to commuters in any urban area where the occasional street performer is part of the cityscape: Do you stop and listen? Do you hurry past with a blend of guilt and irritation, aware of your cupidity but annoyed by the unbidden demand on your time and your wallet? Do you throw in a buck, just to be polite? Does your decision change if he’s really bad? What if he’s really good? Do you have time for beauty? Shouldn’t you? What’s the moral mathematics of the moment?

School is beginning for many. Fall is often a start up for many organizations. There will be to do’s, deadlines and pressures. But hopefully we’ll have time to notice really great things that happen everyday. If you’re involved in education I’m guessing there are a few Josh Bell’s in your building.

I hope you’ll make time for beauty. I know I need to. That’s my sermon for today. Stay well.

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