In conversations with people I don’t know very well, there is always this struggle to come up with something that we have in common. What’s your name? Oh, I know someone with your name, it’s my uncle’s sister-in-law’s cousin. You play the cello? Oh, I used to play the cello. You lived there before? I did too! I’m tired of these did it toos. Are they trying to impress me or are they really that similar to me?
One example is the oboe. I used to play the oboe when I had more time on my hands. Of course, when I’m in a gathering full of musicians, I expect there to be at least one other person who’ve played the oboe. But when I find myself at a random gathering, I’m surprised when someone tells me, “Oh, I’ve played the oboe too!” Are they trying to pull my leg, because what’s the chance of meeting another oboist at almost every social gathering I go to?
I am currently listening to:
Telemann. Too bad not very many people recognize his name today even though he was commercially successful during his time. His oboe sonatas are particularly poignant.