2016 Impulse National Tour Part 6:

August 2 Tuesday McComb Illinois

Western Illinois Univetsity 😀 We are heading into rehearsal right off the bus.  Dinner is at 9. Sections are in warmups then straight into ensemble. I talked with the guard briefly. After dinner there will be showers from 10-10:45. After tonight’s rehearsal the truck is moving 1 mile away to a field around the corner on to another part of campus. That’s where we’re rehearsing tomorrow, and we’re getting there by foot 🙂 Guard did a quick warmup and are on the field already.

We are housing with SCVC in a big ass gym, floor to ceiling tarp dividing us. Which means we’re also sharing showers with them. In this day and age, corps that house together have separate shower times, for whatever reason. However the restrooms, we are able to share, but complicating this situation is one of the restrooms has a small set of showers. A few hilarious questions from SCVC kids as I’m sitting in the hall by the restrooms/showers: *several Impulse kids walk into a restroom, SCVC kids sees, sees me, asks, “can I use the restroom?” Yes,  you may. “What if someone in there is changing their clothes?” Don’t stare. “Can I go into the showers, if I’m not going to shower?” Yes, but again, don’t stare. SCVC has some really young kids. 

Had a brief conversation with AZ before lights out. It was good, overall. We’ll talk more later.

Don’t know what they said to prompt me, but had a very random share with Dean and Trevor at lights out too. Girls, women, dolphin shorts, marathon bus rides in the 80’s. So many standards are so different now as far as acceptable behavior in close quarters. 

Our host did a great job getting lights out. I was talking with the SCVC director. He was telling me when the housing was being arranged,  the hosts asked him if he preferred housing with us or with Gold. After he stopped laughing,  he said he told them Impulse!  🙂  I’ve always admired the whole Vanguard organization, almost joined them after my third year with VK. I noticed the SCVC kids moved a lot faster in everything they did, compared to the Impulse kids,  except when our kids are going to the food line! 😛

Bob freaked out a little at the changes to the battery drill in Ballad. I had forgotten about the changes, its been that way since we taught it the week after memorial weekend camp at Taft. The original drill had the battery scattered and that made no sense musically, so we never even taught them those dots. Bob really wanted to change it to what he wrote, but that wasn’t going to happen. 

I’m so glad Randy was able to make it onto tour. I remember talking with the guard before tour, the last rehearsal at Lynwood before getting on buses. Wasn’t sure what was going to happen for tour but I wanted them to know I believed in them, stick together,  and I’ll do my best to push them through whatever needs to be done. But with Randy on tour, they are making changes and improvements they wouldn’t have been able to make without him. 

Daniella took a sabre to the forehead and Emma was waving her hand in front of Daniella’s face, like that was going to help! Love these kids ❤

The field around the corner we walked to is a shit field. The air is moist and very cool. Crazy storm clouds are swirling around. I dont care. They need to get better, They need to get better. THEY NEED TO GET BETTER!!!

I climbed on top of the equipment truck,  just because. Nava joined me. I was loving it, he, not so much. Those sirens I told the kids were just a test turned out to be actual tornado warnings. I asked Nava what we should do. He pointed out the people in the houses across the street and some that were sitting watching us rehearse. So our plan was, if the locals bail, we bail 🙂  It did end up raining and we did a run and had the kids do sub sectionals with the rest of the block time. Had some random conversations,  but one really important one was with Allanah. She needed to know I knew she was struggling. Tim and AZ were there too. Some tears, but good tears. Cleansing of the mind and soul. I rhink she’ll be okay now, but only time will tell.

We scored a 58.7 in Wisconsin and a 58.1 tonight in Illinois, and it was a much better performance from the corps. Two nights ago this show would have been 2 points higher, whatever. We are definitely in the numbers game right now about who should be in what place. Can’t get lost in the game. The numbers mean something, but they don’t. We, staff, need to keep the kids focused on their on the gig and making it better. Kids chirpiness is a little muted tonight. Not sure if its numbers related or their fatigue is getting to them.  Probably a little of both.

August 3 Wednesday Apling Illinois

We were at this crazy old school. It was the high school until 1957, then they built a new one across the street and made this the middle school. No pop in the gym 😛 We’re on our way to the Dixon show. lots of silos, farm houses, and corn, corn, CORN!!! Vern was a kick ass host. He’s a retired engineer from the local nuclear power plant, doing custodial work as a hobby 🙂 Horn kids watched the Arnold Schwarzenegger documentary Pumping Iron. Hype on it, Gabe! Its actually their second time watching it, didn’t finish it the first time in Wisconsin. Trevor has continually stepped up all season, pushing the horns. Not sure he is getting all the support he needs from Josh. 

Talked to the whole corps before the last run through. Some clapped after I spoke. I wasn’t trying to be inspiring, I was sensing a possible sucky show tonight. They seemed low on energy and a little more beat up than anyone wants to say. Staff looks beat up too. I’m beat up, mostly emotionally. I was sitting in the stands by myself after I sent them to lunch, then AZ came up to sit with me. I don’t remember what dark thoughts were spinming in my head, but she helped chase them away and kept me straight. I felt like if she hadn’t been there, I might have let the earth throw me into space. Fuck gravity!!! 😦

Its after the show. Score was another 58. something. I’m watching the food gig right now. Its always fascinating to me. So far, in general,  the kids were happy with their performance. Something worth mentioning at some point, to who, I dunno 😛 The numbers game with the scores is maddening. I’m honestly feeling super tired physically. Alexis is here, just sitting. She looked at me for awhile then told me I looked disheveled. Thanks Alice 😛 Heading to critique now.

Well, that went great and terrible all at the same time. As much as I dont mind being wrong, I really don’t, but tonight I wish I hadn’t been so right. 😦 All the words from the GE judges, even down to some of the hand gestures and some of the body language, you could have videoed me at the talk I gave this afternoon and played it back to me right now 😦  Specifically,  the remarks I made to the corps earlier and the remarks the judges made tonight in critique about where we are falling short, as a corps, and what we can do to fix it, were strikingly identical.

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