For our last reading assignment we were allowed to choose whatever story we wanted to read. I chose to read “Music is my Bag” by Meghan Daum and “Wild in the Woods: Confessions of a Demented Man” by Floyd Skloot. I chose the stories generally because the titles caught my attention.
“Music is my Bag,” by Meghan Dunn is about how she grew up in a house with parents who were musicians. She played oboe and it was a love/hate relationship. Since her parents were both musicians they hounded her with practice and would correct her and coach her. It put a strain on her. The title “Music is my Bag” is mentioned throughout the essay. She uses it to describe a group of people who have a love or a hobby for music. Other interests could have the same slogan (for instance, mine would be “Writing is my Bag”). But the slogan also shows the difference between people who are into what they do and who are just doing it because it looks cool. The last line of the essay is:
“When I look back I hardly recognize myself, that person who could play a Mozart sonata by memory, whose fingers could move three times faster than I now type– a person who was given a gift, but who walked away from it because of piano-key scarves and fedora hats and all those secondary melodies that eventually became the only thing I could hear.”
I feel that this quote expresses the concept or the idea of the essay. Although Daum had this love/hate relationship with music and her oboe, there was something deeper to it. It also had to do with the different groups of people. The hard core music lovers and the one’s who thought rock and roll was music (not that I’m bashing rock and roll. I’m a rock and roll lover, but in the essay it was frowned upon to think rock and roll was actual music). The last line shows that although she grew up in an environment of music lovers, the rock and roll people and their vision of music was all she could hear. She couldn’t hear the true point of music any more. Music went from something she enjoyed to something she couldn’t stand to play, partially because it was forced on her. It’s about doing what you love without the force or the popularity of it taking over.
The second essay, “Wild in the Woods: Confessions of a Demented Man” by Floyd Skloot, is about his experience with going through dementia. This essay I thought was interesting because it was interesting to see how someone got dementia. I don’t think I’ve ever read a story that shows how a single person received this disease and how they worked through it. I think the point of this essay is although he had a disease that hindered him in daily life, he still found a way to work through it. Dementia is a terrible disease because you don’t remember a lot, even if you do the same routine every day. Skloot got through it though. It’s as if he’s telling us no matter how much trouble you feel that you are in, you can find a way to make it work. He moved to the woods with his wife and found that it was easier to handle than living in the city (even though he figured it would be easier for him to stay in touch with reality in the city and not isolate himself). It’s a nice message because there are people who need that kind of advice. Your life could be going down the drain, but as long as you work hard and make it work for you, everything will be okay.
This brings up the topic of my first essay. The “I” essay. Oh boy. What will the “point” be to my essay? That question would be easy to answer if I actually knew what I wanted to write about. I know I don’t have to answer it right now, but seeing as tomorrow we are getting our “I” essay assignment it might be good to try to figure something out tonight. If I went with my friends advice and did an essay on me and Joe the point could be that even though he’s on the opposite end of the world right now, our relationship is still strong. Or it could be something else. I don’t know even know if that’s what I want to write about. I imagine I will figure it out by time class is over tomorrow.
Over and out.