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Emily Grossman

Piddling Around

November 15, 2006 at 10:24 AM

Sometimes instead of practicing, I sit and piddle around for an hour or two. During this time, I think about practicing, but I don’t. Actually, I don’t do a thing. I zone out for a while, and deep down I hope it somehow counts for practicing anyway, even though I’m not doing anything but piddling around. An hour or two goes by in about a minute, and then I feel kinda bad, like I wasted the chance to make a big improvement or something. But secretly, I’m still hoping that the thinking time will pay off in the long run. I feel really spacious after my piddling times. It’s hard to put the piddle away, though, once it’s out.

Every once in a while, I think about the time I got sent to the principal’s office in first grade for not putting my shoes on after the fifth time my teacher told me to. “Enough! I’m going down the hall, and when I get back, you’d better have those shoes on!” Honestly, it was the same kind of time warp that happened back then, too. There she was, and the shoes were still at my feet, my fingers fumbling on the yellow laces. And then the principal said, “Emily, we can’t have little girls running around the school with no shoes on.” I cried because I knew that I was going to be banned from the public school and be sent away to a school for girls who couldn’t keep their shoes on.

But I got a scholarship instead, so I think I’m right about the piddling time.

From Tom Holzman
Posted on November 15, 2006 at 1:54 PM
Glenn Gould used to practice pieces in his head much more than on the piano. So, there is precedent.
From Emily Grossman
Posted on November 15, 2006 at 9:46 PM
I wonder if this is the equivalent of the Music Man's "think system."

Laa-de-daa-de-daa-de-daa-de-daaa...

From Stephen Brivati
Posted on November 15, 2006 at 11:21 PM
Greetings,
Piddling is what I do in the bog. I suggets you reframe it as dreaming time. Without dreams ther e is no progress,
Cheer,s
Buri
From Emily Grossman
Posted on November 16, 2006 at 1:13 AM
pid‧dle  /ˈpɪdl/ -dled, -dling.
–verb (used without object)
1. to spend time in a wasteful, trifling, or ineffective way; dawdle (often fol. by around): He wasted the day piddling around.
From Emily Grossman
Posted on November 16, 2006 at 1:43 AM
Okay, fine, I changed the title to clarify. Although, I rather liked the ambiguity of "Piddling Time".
From Stephen Brivati
Posted on November 16, 2006 at 3:04 AM
Greetings,
om occasion, Canadian dictionaries are profoundly unreliable. Trusting them is commensurate with piddling around,
Cheers,
Buri
From Emily Grossman
Posted on November 16, 2006 at 3:08 AM
How dare you insinuate I'm a Canuck, when in fact I'm an American.
From Stephen Brivati
Posted on November 16, 2006 at 3:47 AM
what a tangled Webster we weave,
when first we practice to conceive.

Or something like that...

From Natasha Marsalli
Posted on November 16, 2006 at 1:02 PM
I love to piddle.
We should start a club...Piddlers Anonymous.
From Tom Steele
Posted on November 16, 2006 at 3:16 PM
I was always convinced your middle name was Dawdle.
From Tom Holzman
Posted on November 16, 2006 at 5:11 PM
Emily - is that your brother or some other male relative washing dirty family linen in public?
From Terez Mertes
Posted on November 16, 2006 at 5:38 PM
You're so funny. You're such a good writer.

Enjoy your piddle - it sounds wonderful. Just don't sit in it too long afterwards or your bum will get cold and wet. Probably a bad thing for Alaska.

From Jim W. Miller
Posted on November 16, 2006 at 7:48 PM
Dad!
From Tom Steele
Posted on November 16, 2006 at 8:21 PM
I'm the older brother (by 23 months) And I once got called to the principal's office for not wearing my shoes as well. They called our mother, and she called our dad, who said "Oh really?" and put his shoes back on.
Then I got sent to that school for barefoot children. They didn't like me as much as Emily.
From Emily Grossman
Posted on November 17, 2006 at 9:17 AM
No, they didn't. If I recall, the kids on the bus chucked your shoes out the window.

So my violin teacher today was impressed at my lesson and told me whatever I did to practice this week really paid off. I told him I did a lot of "thinking". With my shoes off.

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