She sat hunched over her laptop at the small kitchen table, notebook to the left and pen in her right hand. Every now and then when she made too many mistakes in her notes, she’d crumple up a piece of paper and toss it across the kitchen, hoping it would magically make its way to the bin. Ideally, she shouldn’t have been up this late because she was getting stressed and almost upset with this pent-up frustration. She had the last of her exams coming up and with her degree nearing its end, she just wanted to give it her all.
But to say she was a bit stressed was an understatement.
Her exams were coming up in about a week from now and she was freaking out, thinking she didn’t know anything. Of course she knew stuff but she was so overwhelmed. She continued to type and write notes every now and then. She would even be talking aloud to herself.
She was smart and studied - sometimes (depends on her motivation) - when needed but she was a perfectionist. She worked really hard to get into university and she didn’t want to toss it all away.
She could not cope with this much stress - like anyone - except she didn’t deal with it in a healthy fashion.
Studying [course] for the past [number of years] was becoming almost tedious. Sure, she was stressed before because of studying back in school but of course, it was still a pain. After a while, she checked the time.
She groaned loudly and put her head down. After a few minutes of silence, tears began to escape her hues. She continued to work hard and beat herself up but the build up for the exams was absolute hell. She was getting very tired of studying. She almost felt her heart sank and a few silent whimpers escaped her lips as she thought of the amount she had left to study before next week. Of course, being in this state, she very well may have been exaggerating.
It was then when she heard footsteps.
With her head still down, she heard the footsteps get closer and closer until she felt a hand smooth over her back for a few seconds.
“How’s the studying going?” he asked through a loud yawn.
Her boyfriend was thankfully home for the next few weeks after working a lot. Kyungsoo had invited her into the the dorm knowing she wouldn’t cause much trouble since she had to study but also, so he could keep an eye on her easier. He wanted to be there for this hectic time.
“U-um-!” she gasped as she shot up and smiled. “Great, I think I’m almost–”
Before she could continue babbling on, Kyungsoo cut her off as he turned her around. “And for someone who claims to be almost finished… you look quite upset…” he whispered softly. He brought a thumb up to her cheeks and wiped away her tears. He gently caressed her cheeks.
Normally, he wouldn’t have been so compassionate to her at nearly two in the morning, but she probably just needed someone right now. And so, he bit back another yawn and said, “It’s okay. You’re doing great. You’ve been at his shot since after we all ate dinner and I don’t think you’ve given yourself any sort of break. Learn to take it easy every now and then.”
Accepting the fact that she could not deceive her boyfriend of three years, she lets her façade drop. Her head was back in her hands as she sobbed out pure frustration and because of her worries. “I can’t d-do it…” she sighed.
He took a hold of her hand and told her to take a few deep breaths. “Yes, you can. I know you can. You’re getting way too into this.” He gently squeezed her hand.
He pulled her up and gave her a pat on the back. He then pressed a chaste kiss to her lips. “I think it’s about time we got your ass to bed,” he whispered. His girlfriend groaned again and mumbled something but he couldn’t quite understand her. And then again. “The hell?”
“I’m tired,” she mumbled. Kyungsoo continued to walk back up to their room but he turned around when he noticed she wasn’t following him. He quirked a brow as a way of telling her to stop stalling when she said, “Carry me.”
“Hah! No.” He muttered and walked back up the stairs. Noting that she really wanted to be carried he walked half-way down the stairs and opened up his arms for her.
The dreaded Friday had arrived.
Kyungsoo waited in the car for his girlfriend to come out of the exam hall. Obviously the car had tinted out windows and the like and he was wearing too many scarves on a hot summers day to disguise himself.
This was typical “exam weather.” Here he was, sitting in the car in the sweltering heat while a bunch of students sat their last exam before they - for the most part - completed their degree, but being teased by the great weather.
Suddenly, the main university door opened. The rowdy students were first to leave, as expected. A lot of them were cheering and laughing and then a few more students followed. They all looked extremely proud of themselves.
Kyungsoo tore away his sunglasses as he saw (f/n) leave. She didn’t look too happy compared to the other students.
Once she found his car, she ran over to him and opened the door. She sat down and slammed it again.
“Well, you’re finished. How was it?” He tested as he reversed. She shrugged and he nodded. He’d ask again once they arrived back at the dorm.
Once they got back, Kyungsoo shut the door and said, ‘How was it?’ and she crumbled.
And she went on and on again, worrying that all of her hard work was wasted - just because today wasn’t her day. She could remember everything she couldn’t answer and everything she was hesitant about.
“Shh…” he whispered, knowing she just needed to be spoken to calmly. He grabbed her hands. “It’s just one exam and look, you did it. So you can stop your crying now. Today was a bad day and that’s fine. The members and I have them too, same with the professors and students and just about every other person. You worked hard and for that, I am proud of you.”
Eventually her sobs quitened and she removed herself from him. He then took a hold of her hand and dragged her onto the kitchen. Despite the weather, he boiled the kettle and reached for two cups.
“And besides, tears are a really crappy way to start the holidays. Get your laptop and we can watch a movie.” He suggested.
“…Can we watch Tangled?”
He shook his head but a part of him couldn’t help but smile. “…Fine.”
Sunlight poured through the light, whispy clouds. Anyone would deem this weather rather appropriate for today’s occassion.
She had to admit, the feeling of the thick paper used for the certificate was the most satisfying thing she had ever laid her hands on. She smiled to herself as she heard the lousy recording of Pomp and Circumstance March play in the background.
The black gown fell down to her ankles. There was a wine-coloured hood around her neck and the black cap shielded her from the harsh rays. Of course, she was roasting now since black attracted the sun.
After talking to a few of her friends, she tried her best to locate her boyfriend (who fought tooth and nail against his management to be here) who had ran off somewhere. In the meantime, she went to her family who embraced her and told her just how proud they were of her. She felt a tap on her shoulder and she turned her head around.
Normally, Kyungsoo wasn’t one to openly kiss her in public but today was different.
For once, he didn’t care if people saw him. This was his girlfriend’s day and he was proud of her; he wanted to show it (in disguise as well, but whatever.) He rested a hand on her shoulder and gently pressed his lips against hers. She reciprocated, resting her hands on his shoulders. They pulled away quickly moting that her family was staring at her and after her brother cheekily said 'Hey whoa, you two, get a room.’
Kyungsoo handed her a bouquet of flowers that were as bright as today’s sunlight. A faint blush frosted her cheeks as she held the roses in her hands.
“And all of that worrying was for nothing.”
She thumped his forehead and he muttered something under his breath.. “Oh please, you’re proud of me too. You wouldn’t have given me these flowers if you weren’t.”
He shook his head. “Honestly, you’re so stupid at times, (l/n).” He said, but his eyes somehow said otherwise.
not only that but one less year left in band… AHHH
Oh yeah, hey everyone. Long time, no post from me amiright? Anyways, issues with school and ect have been sadly piling up resulting in less posts. As soon as I’m washed over this wave I’ll post more daily. Have a good rest of your day!
5 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About That Graduation Song
In honor of the Class of 2015, here are 5 fun facts about what is arguably one of the most well-known pieces of classical music.
We have Shakespeare to thank for the ‘pompous’ title: “The royal banner, and all quality, / Pride, pomp, and circumstance of glorious war!” (Othello III.iii)
Pomp and Circumstance actually refers to the entire set of six marches composed by Edward Elgar between 1901 and 1930, his Op. 39. The one played at graduations is formally called “Pomp and Circumstance March No. 1 in D Major.”
The famous graduation melody (around 1:55) caught the attention of King Edward VII, who suggested that words be added so it could be sung at the Royal gala preceding his coronation. The tune with words – known as “Land of Hope and Glory” – was therefore incorporated as the final movement of Elgar’s Coronation Ode, Op. 44.
Elgar knew he had composed a hit, calling it a “damned fine popular tune” and saying before its premier, “I’ve got a tune that will knock’em – knock’em flat.”
The first time the piece was actually played at a graduation ceremony wasn’t until 1905, when Elgar received an honorary doctorate from Yale. Since then, it’s become a staple of American graduations.
Wendy Carlos (released as Walter Carlos) "Clockwork Orange Soundtrack"
Today is the final Wendy Carlos review with the Clockwork Orange soundtrack! Whenever I think about Clockwork Orange I think about how it took my high school boyfriend and I three tries to actually watch the entire thing. Twice - not just once, but twice - his dad happened to walk in at the worst possible violent sex scenes and made us turn it off. It was so embarrassing. And while he would try to argue with his father that we were watching a critically acclaimed film by a highly acclaimed artistic director, I’m pretty sure I remember feeling a little bit relieved. But also SUPER embarrassed. Stanley Kubrick films have always felt like a dudes club to me. I don’t like any of them, (except for maybe Lolita, but I like the book much better) but tried watching pretty much all of them because I was curious about their place in cinematic history. And I was usually dating a guy who loved them. The fact that all of his movies are male-centric and lacking in strong female characters is not unusual in film, but I think that has something to do with it.
But, I’m going to put all of that aside while I listen to this soundtrack and treat it more as a Wendy Carlos album. And make sure you close the gatefold if your parents walk into the room, or you’re going to be super embarrassed.
The first thing I’m noticing about the track listing is that Rachel Elkind is listed as composer next to Carlos’ name for each song. And not all of these songs are by Wendy Carlos, there’s a lot of Beethoven on here and other composers I’ve never heard of.
The first song though, “Title Music from A Clockwork Orange,” is composed by Wendy Carlos and Rachel Elkind. It is very dramatic and building. It’s the kind of music you could slowly climb a mountain to.
Ah! The second song we have all heard before! I just didn’t know the name, and maybe you didn’t either? It’s “The Thieving Magpie” by Gioacchino Rossini. Doesn’t this song just make you want to put on toe shoes and a tu-tu? That’s what it makes me want to do at first. But then the way it builds makes you think that they’re probably running around and doing something terrible to this music in the movie. I like when contemporary movies contrast scenes of violence with non-contemporary music. I think it can work very well. Ah yes, here we are, “Alex putting his droogs in place,” if you’re interested.
Following another Wendy Carlos “Theme from Clockwork Orange,” is Beethoven’s “9th symphony, Second Movement- Abridged,” another extremely famous song. Writing about listening to classical music for this blog feels harder than writing about listening to rock. I was about to say because the songs are so much longer, but the 9th Symphony is only 3 minutes and 48 seconds, so that’s not the reason. So far though, I think this would be a good album to put on when you’re in the mood for classical music. It feels like a nice album to cook and eat dinner to. Which is funny since I wouldn’t call A Clockwork Orange a nice movie to eat dinner to.
Listening to this album is honestly kind of making me want to watch this movie again, since I haven’t watched it since high school. I’m very surprised that I’m feeling this way!
The song following Beethoven’s 9th Symphony is “March from A Clockwork Orange (Ninth Symphony, Fourth Movement- Abridged)” by Wendy Carlos, and I’m really enjoying it. It has some robot sounding vocals and is pretty uplifting and joyous. The vocals were surprising at first, but now I’m really into them.
On to side two, with “Pomp and Circumstance March No. 1” Besides “The Wedding March,” I can’t think of any other song where you really can only think of one thing when you hear it. This is the graduation song! But I’m going to try and listen to it as if I don’t know it as the graduation song. I think when I try to listen to it differently, the most noticeable thing for me is the drums. They really give this song a kick. Oh! There’s a second verse! And it just sounds like a jaunty, romantic march! It’s very pretty, but definitely not the kind of music you would get your diploma handed to you with. But then….we’re back to the main theme. It kind of makes you want to wave your arms in the air back and forth like you’re listening to a Boys II Men song.
Following “Pomp and Circumstance” is Wendy Carlos’ “Timesteps.” Maybe this is the song you graduate to if you live in outer space. Probably is.
All of a sudden the soundtrack takes a sharp turn - “I Want to Marry A Lighthouse Keeper.” I know it’s a soundtrack, but it just doesn’t fit! It’s only about a minute long, but it’s a very inappropriate minute.
And then we end with “Singin’ in the Rain,” which, is a lovely song, but does feel a little out of place again. But not as much as “I Want to Marry A Lighthouse Keeper,” because this song is much, much better.
Thus concludes my brief education in Wendy Carlos! My opinion has remained the same from when I heard those first couple of notes of the Tron soundtrack and saw her picture with a cat on her shoulder: I am a Wendy Carlos fan and will definitely revisit these albums in the future. But for now, it feels good to move on to a new artist. Any guesses for what is next? Let me know in the comments. And I’ll let you know if I end up watching A Clockwork Orange tonight when Alex get’s home. Of course he owns the dvd. He owns the entire Stanley Kubrick Collection boxed set. (So cliche.)
UPDATE: I just found out that The Big Chill is streaming on Netflix. I am SO watching that instead.