Wabash Blogs Immersion 2008: Glee Club in California
 

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March 08, 2008

Mid-Western Hospitality In The West

Patrick Griffith '10 - This past week in San Francisco wasn’t my first visit, and I certainly hope it won’t be the last!  It was, however, my first time being in California while being a Wabash student and further, a representative of the Wabash College Glee Club.  The combination of the two along with what I have found that Wabash means to me has created an outstanding trip that is incomparable to any of my previous visits to the San Francisco Bay area.

First a bit of background on my previous visits—I have an aunt and an uncle (they are siblings) who both live in the area—my aunt has lived in San Francisco for nearly 30 years and my uncle merely 5, both after moving from LaPorte, Indiana.  My immediate family and I have been out to visit several times and they have graciously provided accommodations and touring information.  While I will continue to trust their judgment, entertain their recommendations and highly value other opinions as their favorite [unmarried] nephew, it was enjoyable to be with my comrades of the Glee Club and take a new sense of adventure.  Coming from a closely-knit family, I still made a point to see my local relatives as much as possible, and vice versa.  My parents even made the trip out to visit two of my father’s four siblings and see the Glee Club perform as a bonus!

I have discovered throughout the week that there is a distinct difference between people from or educated in the mid-west and those from the West Coast.  I believe that a local passerby said it best when commenting, “I knew you all couldn’t be from around here—you’re all too nice and innocent.”  The more I thought about that comment; the actions of those influenced by the mid-west became prevalent. I owe a large portion of this week’s adventures to three people: Aunt Jeanne, Fred LaCosse ’56, and Jeff Troutner all from cities in Indiana, LaPorte, South Bend and Ft. Wayne, respectively. 

I am actually forever grateful for the amount of work that my aunt, Jeanne Griffith, and her assistant (Jennifer) put forth to assisting the Glee Club in finding a hotel with an amazing view as well as many other additives throughout our week stay.  She graced the Glee Club as a whole with a meal on the first night and then my roommates and myself a few days later with a bonus of a trip to Pacifica, CA and the meal on the ocean side a few days later.  She decided to take the three of us around on a mobile tour of the city pointing out various points of interest.  Refer to Justin Billby’s post for the location points.

 

Fred LaCosse, along with his wife Terry Lowry, contacted and set up venues for the Glee Club to perform as well as exciting trips for us to gain a cultural experience of San Francisco.  I especially enjoyed our trip to Alcatraz Island this time now that I have aged 12 years since my inaugural trip to the used-to-be prison.  The only thing that has changed about it is the amount of appreciation that I have for the island and its history, although I’m sure the ticket price went up—I didn’t have to pay attention either time, thankfully!  I would also say that my favorite performance was at The Family, a male organization in which Fred is involved, where we were able to sing, and myself, Forrest Craig ‘10 and Tian Tian ’11 were able to play a piano trio, for which an encore was asked at the conclusion of the program! Fred still embodies what a Wabash man is supposed to be, and Terry has most certainly sets a high bar when it comes to being the wife of an Alumnus.  It was a treat to spend time with them as they bestowed their kindness upon us.

 

This evening a family friend of Ben Harvill, Jeff Troutner took us out on the town—and he took us to places that I had never been before!  It was quite exciting!  We got to see the Golden Gate Bridge from a point right on the bay very close to the bridge itself.  We also went through Sausalito, Tiburon, and other small towns on the trip.  It was a whole new side of the Bay Area that I had never seen before!  It was exciting to see that a Hoosier, such as myself, could be successful move to the Bay Area and live comfortable.

 

The hospitality of these people has really been immeasurable.  I’ve known for quite some time that the work ethic of those from the mid-west is preferred on the coasts, and now, even as an undergraduate, I can see why.  It is only my hope that someday I will be able to use my mid-western hospitality for a group of men—a group of Wabash men. 

 

Bryan Burzon '11 - How do you end a week that started with 8 or our group people stuck in an elevator, eating at an all you can eat sushi restaurant for 30 dollars, seeing Alcatraz Island, and going to China town? You end it by realizing what this trip was all about. I have to admit, I thought this trip was about singing and having fun, but it’s not. Today the Glee Club Performed at the Vintage Golden Gate nursing home.  Performing at the nursing was an enlightening moment of our purpose as a Glee Club. Seeing those people sitting and listening to us made me realize that this whole trip was not about us; it was about bringing joy to peoples faces as they heard the beautiful chords that we sang. All the hours that we put in were all for that moment of making someone smile. Their smiles not only brought joy to myself, but it made me realize that the hours I spent rehearsing were indeed worth it.

After leaving the nursing home and having an hour to ourselves we headed to the John Pence Gallery to meet with the Wabash Alums. The gallery was filled with amazing paintings and sculptures done by various artists. Before the concert, we had a chance to talk to some of the Wabash alumni. All the alumni I had talked to had been impacted by their experience at Wabash College and I realized that my experience at Wabash College will not only affect my career in the future but also will effect me as a person. Each of the men I spoke to shared stories, not of what the learned in the classroom, but of the things they learned outside. I didn’t hear about the biology classes, or Dr. Blix giving religion lectures on Hinduism. Instead, I heard about how things such as the Glee Club fostered a love of the arts. For many of the men, the experiences outside of the classroom are what they carried with them throughout the years. I think Glee Club, and this San Francisco tour, will be one such experience for me.

March 07, 2008

A Trip to 'the Rock'

Nick Marzotto ‘11 - The most anticipated attraction on the trip for me was early this morning when the Glee Club traveled to “the Rock.” Alcatraz Island is the setting of two of my favorite movies “The Rock” and “Escape from Alcatraz.” Looking at the former prison from the streets of San Francisco is a wondrous sight; the large rock with several gloomy buildings on it gives the bay an unusual attraction.

            The boat ride over to the island was a beautiful one because of the view of the city as well as the Golden Gate Bridge. Once we arrived on the island, a few fellow Glee Clubbers and myself decided to listen to one of the park ranger’s talk about the prison and its involvement in multiple Hollywood productions. He explained to us that many of the scenes from those movies were taped on the island but were not always a part of the real prison but rather built on sight to fit the movie. He also told us about the “Birdman of Alcatraz” and how he really was not such a nice guy as perceived after watching the movie with Bert Lancaster.

            There was not a real tour around the island; instead one could walk around as they pleased. The cell block, on the other hand, had an audio tour which one could take. The cell block was incredibly spooky and grim. There were many exhibits about the most famous residents (Al Capone, “Machine Gun” Kelly, and Robert “Birdman” Stroud) as well as failed escape attempts by prisoners. The Alcatraz experience was one that is unforgettable and I hope to return to “the Rock” again someday…but only to visit.

 

 

Omar Guajardo '11 - This morning started out like any other: we woke up and convened in the dining room of the hotel by some ungodly hour for breakfast and a head count.  After we left the hotel we headed down to pier 33 for our tour of Alcatraz.  While waiting for the ferry to pick us up, some “glee-clubbers” and I took a journey to a different pier to look at sea lions.  In my opinion, the sea lions were more intriguing than “The Rock.”  I mean it was interesting to see Alcatraz for the first time and to learn about its history and little facts about it, but it wasn’t what I expected it to be.  Perhaps I anticipated something so much greater that when I finally saw it I was disappointed.  Needless to say I left slightly earlier than the others.  

After a few hours of eating, watching tv and, finally, napping I got ready for the nights concert. This concert was different from the others in a few ways.  The means in which we arrived to the concert location was very new to me.  We had to take something similar to Chicago’s “El” or Mexico City’s “Metro.”  This was called the B.A.R.T: Bay Area Rapid Transit.  They did not exaggerate when they called it “rapid.” We actually had to take three types of public transportation to arrive at our concert site: the more familiar MUNI, the less familiar B.A.R.T, and the more comfortable buses around the area of our destination. 

Aside from our newfound modes of transportation, the concert location itself was at a different location than we were used to.  We performed at Cal State University East Bay in Hayward.  The turnout wasn’t extravagant, but the people that did come, I’m happy to say, looked very pleased.  We have been performing very well the past few days, and I look forward to what tomorrow’s packed schedule brings.     

 

Scott Pond '10 - 7:15 am was the breakfast call this morning; the earliest call this entire trip.  We rushed to get the waffles in our mouths and gulped down a large amount of liquid before leaving the hotel.  It was as if Dr. Bowen was pushing us as hard as prisoners to get out the door and he was.  We were going to Alcatraz Island.After I spoke with all the people prone to motion sickness, we boarded the boat.  Tian and Tim both told me of how, in just the right circumstances, they felt nauseous.  

After we arrived at The Rock, I explored a little by myself and read the remaining pages of The Stranger.  The sun was shining just enough to be pleasant and I watched the city from afar.  I could picture what the inmates could have felt about being so close, yet so far.  An inmate drew pictures of the outside.  In every picture he had a bird as one of the main focuses.  Birds had a freedom that the prisoners did not have. I learned about what really happened at Alcatraz Island.  No, there are no man-eating sharks around Alcatraz Island, however three men were able to escape and were never seen again.  Overall, Alcatraz was a neat experience.

Well, I do not want to bore you so let’s get Super-reading.  There was:

Bologna sandwiches- Clay and I eat these during lunch to conserve money

A three hour lunch break – I took a nap, massive

Bay Area Rapid Transit System (BART) – Comfortable, Awesome.

East Bay Campus- 13,000 people on campus.

Comfort Inn Hotel – View of the Golden Gate Bridge at night, priceless

We finally returned and people were hungry (I think it was because the walking around all the time finally got to people).  I took a waffle from breakfast out of my fridge and am now eating it.  This trip is massive.

 

 

March 06, 2008

What A Concert Tour Should Look Like

Glee Club Photo Album 

Ian Scales '10 - Wednesday in San Francisco. Quite possibly our busiest day yet this week but, despite long waits at the bus stops and uphill walks, everything fell together like clockwork. After another filling continental breakfast of hardboiled eggs and make-your-own waffles, we set out for morning rehearsal at St. Dominic’s Church. The generosity of St. Dominic’s has been outstanding. There is nothing better than having the chance to sing in a sanctuary with beautiful acoustics to prepare for our performances later today. 

 

On our way back to the hotel, we had a little bit of a hold up at one of the bus stops. However, full buses (the bane of traveling in a group of thirty-five) didn’t stop us from rehearsing right there at the stop. As the T-Tones sang “Can You Feel the Love Tonight,” an empty bus rolled up and we all boarded. Lunch was standard, a great sandwich at a small joint across from the hotel. It seems that every restaurant advertises itself as “sandwich.” Even a Vietnamese restaurant had “New Vietnamese Sandwiches,” but I digress. 

 

Our first performance in the afternoon was at Grace Cathedral. An absolutely gorgeous cathedral, it was the first American church I have seen that is comparable to those of Europe. The acoustics of the space were incredible and it was a joy to experience singing at Grace. Wabash and Glee Club alum Fred LaCosse ’56 came to hear us sing and then led us down the street to the Family Club building where we would be singing later that night. Mr. LaCosse gave us a little history of the area, Nob Hill, and, after changing out of our uniforms, we had a few hours to spend at Union Square. Yet another shopping district in San Francisco, a few guys and I found ourselves in Rasputin Music & Movies wasting more of our money on vintage LP’s and five dollar CDs. We had just enough time to make it down to the Westfield shopping center, the only place I have ever seen that had curved escalators. Yes, there was a spiral staircase of escalators. Oh, and did I mention they didn't charge 25 cents to use the restrooms? A nice luxury. 

 

We headed back to the Family Club and got in our uniforms. We started the evening with hors d’oeuvres and meeting some of the members of the club before everyone went upstairs for a fantastic meal, FOR FREE!!! After dinner it was time to perform. Mr. LaCosse introduced us and we marched in singing “Old Wabash.” The concert was great, our best performance yet this week. In addition to songs by the entire Glee Club directed by Dr. Bowen, sophomore Ben Harvill directed us for “Sick of the Songs of the Sea” and the T-Tones presented a few numbers. It went smoothly and all the members of The Family were very appreciative. All in all, Wednesday was a fun and successful day for the whole Glee Club and Company full of singing. We are getting more and more comfortable here everyday and we can’t wait to finish the week off right with three more performances, and only a few more of those oh-so-lovely tourist traps.

 

 

Lucian Lupinski '11 - Today, Wednesday, was our busiest day thus far, excluding Sunday, of course. We had to be at breakfast by 7:45 AM and ready to go by 8:45 to practice at St. Dominic’s Church. After practice was over, we were given a short lunch break. From there, we traveled to Grace Cathedral where we gave our first performance of the day. For this concert, we did a combination of what Dr. Bowen has classified as sacred and secular pieces. We had a successful performance. Wabash alumnus Fred LaCosse took us to his club, the Family, where we could change out of our uniforms. From there we were able to explore the famous Union Square area. After doing some window shopping, we returned to the Family Club. We then “suited up” and proceeded to our dinner; it was quite nice. After receiving a briefing on the evening’s performance from Dr. Bowen, we were ready to perform. This was one of the larger performances I have given with the Glee Club. Our concert was received very well by the members and their guests. After the concert, we sang the Alma Mater for a couple of Alumni. We returned to the hotel, to quote Doctor Bowen, “to sleep, perchance to dream.”

 

Forrest Craig '10 - This evening the Glee Club had a wonderful time performing for “The Family,” a ritzy social club located in downtown San Francisco consisting of about 800 men. These men are all interested in or connected to the fine arts in some way. In general, they love music, so they were greatly anticipating our visit. Tonight was a special night because the men invited their wives for a special (i.e. expensive) dinner, and overall, they greatly enjoyed our visit.

When we arrived around 2:00pm, we were given a quick tour of the building and then dropped off our suits in the dressing room. We had planned to arrive early so that we all could spend some time exploring the cafes, shops, and department stores of Union Square. During that time I ended up perusing the streets with none other than Pat Griffith and Tian Tian, sipping milkshakes and wandering through department stores.

            The evening’s concert began at 7:00pm and was definitely the longest one of our tour so far. It was also the most unusual concert, in that Dr. Bowen added a bit of theatrics to the program. Feigning a mutiny, the Glee Club rebelliously refused to sing another song about the sea or sailors or pirates, so Ben Harvill was sent to the front to conduct the Glee Club in our singing of “Sick of the Songs of the Sea.” It was all very entertaining and our audience had a laugh. Also out of the ordinary was the trio that Tian Tian, Patrick, and I played. We had our six hands tangled together on one keyboard, which the audience had a riot over.

            Before and after the concert, “The Family” invited us downstairs to enjoy a time of socializing. There were free, non-alcoholic drinks provided for us (to the dismay of many), and the men and women of “The Family” pleasantly engaged us with their lively conversation. Those conversations ranged from politics (with Bryce Chitwood) to days gone by with alumnus Fred Lacosse, ‘56. 

            However, one conversion I had was especially memorable. It was soon after the trio had finished its second performance of Das Dreyblatt that an elderly couple approached Patrick and me. After spending a few minutes talking about our piece, the conversation moved towards our mutual love and appreciation for music. The couple expressed the great enjoyment music gave them and made sure to let us know that we should always keep music in our lives. Patrick and I assured them that we would. As the lyrics say in one of our songs “let music never die in me!”

March 05, 2008

San Franciscan Exploits

Tian Tian '11 - It still seems like yesterday that I first saw the name of San Francisco in an English language training textbook called “East-West” when I was a middle school lad in China. And now, I'm sitting right by the window in my room on the 10th floor at a Comfort Inn, with the Golden Gate Bridge in my sight. This tour to San Francisco is a lot different from any of my previous vacations because I am on the Wabash College Glee Club 2008 Concert Tour. This makes me feel pride. Why? Just ask the passengers of the MUNI [municipal] bus this morning who got to hear our Glee Club singing “Down by the Sally Garden” and they will give you a satisfying answer. They wanted encore……

 

After an exhausting half-semester at Crawfordsville, I finally get to relax—and this tour surely add bonus to the way I relax myself. I remember vividly how excited we Glee Club brothers were when we left the San Francisco airport. “We are showering in the warm sunshine of California,” some of us claimed. The city itself has such a relaxing nature. Even though the traffic is as busy as Chicago’s, I do not feel rushed by the pace of the traffic at all. I assume that it is the character of this city. The trees on both side of the streets blossom with different flowers that give each avenue a unique aroma. After a tour to the Fisherman’s Wharf this afternoon, Scott Pond and I paid a visit to Chinatown, something which I longed for. However, I was as confused as Scott when we got there. Most Chinese residents here in San Francisco speak Cantonese, whereas I speak Mandarin! It took at least three minutes for us to understand a souvenir storekeeper’s explanation of how to get to the best restaurant that serves the most authentic Sichuan food because he used a mixture of Cantonese and English with strong accent. Fortunately, Scott and I found that restaurant and we had some real fancy food that Scott described as the Best Chinese food he had ever eaten. I told Scott, “It might be easy for a Chinese restaurant here to satisfy an American stomach, but it is rather hard to satisfy a native Chinese’s stomach. But my stomach feels satisfied tonight”.

 

Timothy Closson '09 - This morning we went by bus to St Dominic’s Church for rehearsal. While on the way there, we broke into song for the first time. When we got off the bus, there was some confusion about whether or not the bus driver was mad at us for singing. He had said something over the speaker while we were singing, but it turned out that he was just announcing the stops. At St Dominic’s, we used the choir’s rehearsal room and also sang several songs in the sanctuary. It was inspiring to see such a grand and traditionally structured church. We will be returning two more times to rehearse here. I’m excited to do this since I was unable to look at all the details I wanted to see this morning.

 

During our free time today, a friend and I visited other Catholic Churches in the area of northern San Francisco. We walked to Sts. Peter and Paul, about 20 minutes east of our hotel. We built a day of memories, both new ones here in San Francisco and old ones from exploring Catholic churches in New York City. We visited a total of four churches today during our free time and did a lot of walking between them. We also stopped at a really good pizzeria and had a late lunch. It was really a “New York experience” here in San Francisco this afternoon.

 

We met up with another group from the Glee Club and found an all-you-can-eat sushi bar. We were there for an hour and a half, and all ate as much as we could! There was a great variety and I was able to find new types of food I really enjoy. We even received a portion of our dessert on the house. The long walk back to the hotel took us up Lombard Street, known as the “crooked street,” which is on a tall hill that is very steep. While the view from the top is awesome, the walk to get there is exhausting.

 

Justin Bilby '09 - Tuesday—the Wabash College Glee Club Spring Tour continues. After rehearsal at St. Dominic’s Church (for details, see blog entry by Tim Closson), the Glee Club visited the San Francisco Cable Car Barn and Museum. The cable cars of San Francisco are a major part of the city’s culture, and the museum was a great way for us to learn about it. We got to see the hub of the cable cars and how the wheels pull the entire cable throughout the whole line, taking the cars out and back. It was very interesting to read and learn about the history of this part of the city’s culture.

 

Following that, we had the rest of the day for free time to explore the city for ourselves. With some friends (Ben Harvill and Patrick Griffith), I took a walk around Ghirardelli Square and the Fisherman’s Wharf, two popular tourist areas of San Francisco. We had been at Fisherman’s Wharf the night before, but wanted to see it during the day while all the shops were open and street vendors out.

 

After our return trip to the Wharf, we had visited Patrick’s aunt, who works in the city. She has been a great help—asset really—to the Glee Club during our tour, and increasingly so as the tour continues. She offered to take us to Pacifica, a beach town just south of San Francisco, for a chance to see the Pacific Ocean in person, followed by dinner with a few more of Patrick’s family. The ocean view was amazing, and Patrick informed us that the water was cold, as he was the only one to enter the water. For dinner, I ordered a seafood combination plate, and it was absolutely fantastic!

 

On the way back to our hotel from Pacifica, Patrick’s Aunt Jeanne took us on a scenic tour of the city at night. We saw other popular tourist attractions such as AT&T Park where the SF Giants play, the Embarcadero, Coit Tower (for an evening view of the city in its lighted splendor), Lombard Street (the ‘crookedest’ street in the world), and then a quick trip through Chinatown.

 

March 04, 2008

Mile High Trees

Filip Drambarean '08 - Let me just start off by saying that I love nature, and today’s adventure at Muir Woods was simply amazing. I have always been a big fan of scenery that differs from the flat and uneventful landscapes of what is the majority of Indiana. 

Today was a good reminder of how beautiful this place really is. We quickly noticed how fresh and clean the air smelled. Our hike through the towering redwoods felt like we were in a movie (we came to the conclusion that it was the planet Endor, home of the Ewoks, from Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi). It was definitely a departure from the cornfields of Indiana. My group was particularly plagued with plenty of “photo ops.” Forrest made the rookie mistake of asking what photo op actually means. I usually have an eye for these things, and I could find a Kodak moment at least once every 20 yards. Then Bryan Burzon, the freshman hopeful, proved his mettle by sacrificing a potential pose and instead taking the picture himself, a noteworthy feat by any stretch of the imagination. Who does that? I will also make it my mission to have a servant’s heart during this journey. Nevertheless, our experience in Muir Woods was completely worth it.

 

It should also be noted that tonight we ate some of the most amazing burgers and fries this side of the Mississippi. With a total of three different burgers, In-N-Out Burger is a staple in these parts. Keeping things simple, we feasted on double-doubles and animal-style fries. This as only the tip of the iceberg and I am very excited about the rest of this week.

 

Sean Foster '08-The chilly air pressed upon our backs, urging us to follow its course of freedom.  With trodden tracks setting our path, no giant tree could stop our motion.  We kept our pace, to keep on time so as not disgrace, up the hills ’til we could see ships setting out to the ocean.  The sun soaked valley filled our eyes.  We kept trekking and to our surprise, we could see the bright blue sky of morning.  

If walking to the Fine Arts Center causes your calves to cry, you’ve gotta give the trails of Muir Woods a try.  After a short tour of the city, and a ride across the Golden Gate Bridge, we began our ascent.  The sunlight took every opportunity to shine through the trees that shaded the curvaceous road to the welcome center.  A wide wooden bridge led us to the trails.  Where each one leads?  A dollar for a map will tell. 

We took the trail called Hillside and soon discovered the origin of its name.  The path never ceased to rise, until it met a curve and led us toward the bay side where we stopped to smell the r..ocean.  As we left the view behind, we witnessed vultures circling ’round a dead bovine and, with that, made our return.  The trail back down gave us all a frown, but our stomachs were raising a clatter.

Nathan Colglazier '10 - California has some of the most amazing scenery. Pictures do not do this place justice.The woods we traveled to this morning were absolutely gorgeous. After eating a filling breakfast, including cereal, fruit, and muffins, we drove from the hotel over the famous Golden Gate Bridge to Muir Woods, where we were given two hours to explore. Some chose to poke around at the café and gift shop while the rest of us went off into the woods. There were boardwalks and concrete paths stretching out from the entrance. When a small group of us saw the first dirt path, we were off.

 

We followed this “hillside” trail over a creek and up the mountain, all the while snapping pictures of the tall trees, rushing creek, and fallen timbers. An hour into our hike, we met up with some others and came to a junction in the trail. Some people decided to take the sure safe way back. Clay Zook, Scott Pond, and I all decided that was not what we came here for, and we took off the other way along the creek. We kept ascending, following the trail markers for Alice Woods. More and more, the trail markers indicated that we were not in Muir Woods anymore. The scenery became increasingly wonderful. We came to a clearing near the top of the mountain which ended as we walked into a camp ground. Pretty sure we were not anywhere near the visitor center, we took a break and, luckily, found a map posted at the camp site. We decided that the Creekside Trail would be the best way to get back to the main trails of Muir Woods, regardless of a notice that the trail blocked off. We crossed the barricade and set off. Later, we discovered the part of the trail that had been taken out by rocks, crossed them, and continued on. Much worse than getting lost in a forest in California would have been being late to the bus after Dr. Bowen had given us a time to be back. The path exposed us to more amazing scenery. We had to cross the creek again via two fallen trees. When one ran out, we jumped to the other to continue on. We pressed on and were assured of our timely return when we saw the signs reading “Please Stay on the Path” posted everywhere. We arrived at the bus with time to spare.

Our group went to lunch in the little town Pt. Reyes Station. Most people went to different restaurants. Scott, Clay, and I, this time accompanied by Tian Tian, went to a truck parked on the street called the Chinese Chuck Wagon. The Shrimp Mu Shu was excellent, and the guy who owned the truck, now retired, told us that he once sold and installed software for Cummins in southern Indiana. After that, we went to the Bear Valley Visitor Center, where most of us walked the “Earthquake Trail” to see the markers for the San Andreas Faultline. After climbing a few trees with a couple of the guys, we  headed back to the hotel for a rehearsal to end the scheduled events of the day

March 03, 2008

Glee Club Serenades San Francisco

Ben Harvill '10 - Today, the first day of our 2008 Glee Club Spring Tour, started off at 3:30 a.m. Indiana time. We left Indy at 6:30 a.m. and landed in San Francisco at 11:30 a.m. Pacific Time. Driving to our hotel in a shuttle van, the sights of mountainous hills, blue ocean and bay, and tons of cars, people, and houses packed in everywhere was a huge shock to this Indiana boy.

We had an extremely tight schedule all day, but we got to our first concert on time. The concert was at the Cathedral of St. Mary of the Assumption, which was another culture shock for me. The church is 18 stories tall! It is an amazing building! The modern architecture and soaring roofline look like a huge washing machine. When we arrived, we were in time to hear the final moments of a Catholic Mass spoken in Latin for a Hispanic community.

The church posed a problem for us as a singing group; because the church was so big and open, it dispersed the sound, making it impossible to hear ourselves sing. It was extremely difficult to adjust to, but we pulled through and performed very well.

After that, we went to a Mexican restaurant called Chevy’s and had fantastic food! And all we had to do for it was sing a few lines of some songs. All in all, it was a fun day, but extremely tiring! We called it a night at 9:00 p.m. Pacific Time, and we have to get up by 7:30 a.m. to get started for tomorrow!

 

 

 

James Kennelly '11 - Dr. Jekyll and Dr. Bowen?

 

While the 2008 San Francisco progresses in earnest, a strange new development has many of the entourage disturbed. The man who has drilled and driven the hapless members of Glee Club through weeks of preparatory training has suddenly developed an alter ego. The members of the Glee Club were suddenly faced with a real-life man—one who not only loosens his tie, but laughs freely and amiably. Drill Sergeant Dr. Richard Bowen, the same man who recently shortened practice breaks to four minutes and demanded silent attention even at the most inconvenient times has suddenly, and without expectation, unleashed an unprecedented string of amiability and relaxation, leaving the poor unsuspecting members of Glee Glub shocked and confused.

 

But Nevertheless, Let Facts be submitted to a candid world:

 

He has been seen with an Untucked shirt

He has loosened his tie

He has made multiple Jokes and Puns

He has Stolen food and particularly shrimp from such underprivileged individuals

He has traded his polished shoes for brown slippers

He has admitted to traveling in the wrong direction

He has fallen asleep in unusual places

He has burst out in multiple songs not related in any to Glee Glub songs

He has conversed at length concerning his personal preferences in the consumption of food and beverage

He has given at least one observed backrub and two amiable hugs to unsuspecting individuals

He has conversed again at length concerning his preferences in Television, including Scrubs, House, and Dinner: Impossible

 

Conclusion? For my part, I was pleasantly surprised. In our unique environment at Wabash College, too often are teachers and instructors dehumanized by their students. The change in perspective is refreshing; it’s nice to meet interesting, friendly people who you have already seemingly known for six months.