Wednesday, July 25, 2007


I go to a prom. There is a lot of rushing, something which I am not at all in favour of, to the point of momentarily preferring to go home over the prospect of rushing. Fortunately it all turns out fine in the end, for reasons that have something to do with the colour of the floor, or the good humour of my companion, or the many curtains in the Albert Hall, or the space in which we stand, or the multitude of unexpectedly diverse and downright odd people around me, or the slightly nasty wine I drank in a tearing rush, or something.

The conductor walks in only a moment after we do. I admire his shirt. To be honest I don't really have any other term of reference. I also look at the sequinned sleeves of the orchestra leader, and the way that the choir hold their scores. I wonder a bit whether they have been told to hold the scores a certain way, and then find a few who either disprove the theory, or are rebels. I also look at their necklines, because it's important to see whether they are all wearing the same thing (they aren't. Quite).

The soloists are on stage. One of them is wearing a silky two-piece which is an indiscriminate mustardy-olive colour of which I do not approve, and an exceptionally sparkly necklace. I wonder whether the necklace is real, and spend some time looking at the choir's waistcoats.

The music begins. I concentrate for a while on standing up, on not fidgeting, on whether or not I want to look at the words, on the small camera-screen that I can see at my upper left, on wondering why it is quieter than I thought it would be, on the man in front's ugly raincoat and strange trouser-arrangement.

Finally, I stop thinking and get down to the elusive business of enjoying myself.

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