minutia press.
Those High Holiday Blues

We're in the midst of the High Holiday season here, which for me this year means a lot of work at our temple getting music ready for the holidays.

We tried something totally new this year in our alternative service: an instrumental, folk-style service with a songleader, guitars, drum, mandolin, cello, flute, and clarinet. It's in line with what we've been doing on Friday nights, but just more so, and also more geared toward the High Holidays than Shabbat.

We also tried a huge choir in the main service, comprised of our eight professional anchors, 15 adults and over 15 teenagers from our congregation. This is also the first year we've flown without our long-time organist, who retired last year. It's funny about change. On one hand there's risk that things won't work out, but on the other hand, some things work better than you thought they could. Both services went really well, and tomorrow we get to repeat them pretty much for Yom Kippur.

Meanwile the Blues. I got to go to two games so far. For hte first game, our opener in preseason against Chicago, I took 3 people from down the street (my son's best friend and most of his family), only to find there was no scoreboard. Not a big deal you'd think, but there was no camera coverage of action in the corner; no posting of penalties; no hat-puck dance. It was like watching coverage of a high school hockey game, but much more expensive.

I called the Blues to complain and they said they'd do something for me but so far nothing has happened. There were only 6,000 people in the arena, and not many more the other day against Minnesota. If this is how they are going to treat fans, it's not going to be a great season for us.

One cool thing is that my tickets now "let" me dine in the club area upstairs. So I went up there last game to have dinner with a friend. Sitting behind me was Keith Tkachuck, who was missing the game (but not a nice dinner I guess) due to back spasms. Sititng a few tables behind me was Dallas Drake, another player not on the ice that evening.

Tkachuck did an amazing thing, dropping a bunch of weight for the season this year. He came in chubby last year, but worked all Summer to get in shape for the season. He looked faster in that first game I saw (but he left the game with back spasms).