Sitcom Characters Who Annoy Friends With Their Musical Instruments

Folks have been sharing their memories of a national toy company that is going out of business, so I tried to recollect one of the few times I ever shopped there. Since my kids are both now in college, it has obviously been quite a while that I set foot in a toy store.

One Christmas my daughter topped her list for Santa with a drum set, which she of course received. The worker at the toy store had sworn that the set would be easy to assemble, but he was obviously unaware of my mechanical shortcomings.

Several hours before the kids awoke to check under the tree, I had managed to complete the three pieces of percussion. After all that work, my daughter probably played the drums not more than a dozen times, and boy am I glad of it.

Had she seriously undertaken the task of becoming a female Ringo (Ringa?) Starr, I most likely would have lost a lot of sleep. Nothing can be so annoying as sharing a living space with someone trying to master the drums, or any other instrument for that matter.

That annoying situation has led to some humorous plots on a variety of classic TV shows, and here are ten of them.

Charles Emerson Winchester on MASH.

Hawkeye and BJ both find their fellow surgeon even more annoying than usual, after Charles (played by David Ogden Stiers) starts playing his French Horn.

Bobby Brady on The Brady Bunch

Even though the youngest Brady son gets banished to the garage to practice his drumming, his parents and five siblings still cannot endure his constant racket.

Homer Simpson on The Simpsons

Bass is the instrument through which the patriarch deals with yet another midlife crisis, which soon leads to other dads in Springfield forming a band.

Alice Cooper on Mayberry RFD

Years before that name was immortalized by Vincent Furnier and his fellow rockers, that name belonged to the housekeeper of Mayberry Administrator Sam Jones. In one episode she becomes fascinated with an antique harp, but she lacks the talent to master it.

Joey on Friends

Phoebe tries to teach Joey the guitar in a segment called “The One with All the Resolutions. ”

Larue on Gidget

When her best friend becomes enchanted with the guitar, Gidget (played by Sally Field) finds herself involved with a rock and roll band.

Ross on Friends

As if Joey learning the guitar were not bad enough, his pal decides to take up the bagpipes.

Barney Fife on The Andy Griffith Show

An annoying ensemble already, the Mayberry band got even worse when the deputy purchased a pair of cymbals.

Lucy Ricardo on I Love Lucy

When Ricky’s saxophone player departs, Lucy is determined to replace that horn blower in her husband’s band.

Sheldon on The Big Bang Theory

Neighbors and roommates alike regret when, during a hippie phase, Sheldon begins pounding on bongos in “The Werewolf Transformation.”

Christians: Wondering If You Are In The Right Relationship?

What am I getting myself into?

I received an email from a man who wrote them with a sense of bewilderment. He had been dating a woman for six months and had strong feelings for her. Being that they were both in their late 30′s, they felt they knew what they wanted out of life and didn’t see the point in waiting too long to get married, so he was contemplating popping the question. But, he didn’t want to make a decision based purely on emotion. With the rate of divorce being so high he was questioning his ability to detect whether or not he was making the right decision. His question is one that is on many people’s minds: How do I know I am with the right one?

There are many indicators to help you know if you are with the right person and the way you feel about someone is certainly one of them. Usually, when you are with “the one” you feel a strong, familiar, peaceful connection to him/her in addition to the romance and excitement. But… we all know feelings change and fade. The honeymoon always comes to an end. This is the secret of a strong and lasting marriage… learning to love each other even more when those feelings of romance aren’t present. But, if you can’t rely on feelings as the proper gauge, what is there you can count on?

A New Trend Among Dating Couples

Here’s an interesting trend: more and more couples who are not yet engaged are attending marriage preparation courses and retreats in an effort to boost their discernment process and feel as confident as possible about their chosen partner. I spoke with one such couple, Julie and Brian, about this and the Julie, gave a notable response: “We just want to know what we are getting into so we don’t waste each other’s time.” I had asked Julie specifically why she would attend if she and Brian weren’t engaged, yet. “It’s too important… I don’t want to get a divorce, I’d rather have a long and happy marriage.”

Fair enough. So, if you love the one you’re with, is it enough to be in love and agree on the issues of children, faith, finances, etc.? Some people would say yes, but hearkening back to the gentleman who had emailed me describing his sense of being perplexed, it was clear he still wanted some sign, some indication he couldn’t doubt that his girlfriend was the person God had intended for him.

If you find yourself in these same shoes, I’d like to offer you a simple, yet very effective way to help you discern whether you are with Mr. or Mrs. Right. Just ask yourself these three questions:

1. Will my relationship with this person bring me closer to God?

2. Will my relationship with this person make me a more loving person?

3. Will this relationship allow me to use my gifts and talents?

If our goal in life is to spend eternity with God in heaven then this first question is one we should always ask ourselves. If you answer it honestly and follow through, you take a huge step in knowing if this person is the right one for you. Even if you’ve only been together a short time, you already have some insight into your behaviors as a couple. Are you comfortable discussing your beliefs with this person? Is faith and morality as important to your significant other as it is to you? Do you share any spiritual goals? The answers to these questions all indicate one of three things: either the relationship is moving you toward God, it isn’t, or you need to start talking about these things to find out.

Regarding the second question, it’s important to understand that I’m not talking about romantic love because that should naturally be a yes. This question focuses you on detecting if your relationship with the person you are dating will enable you to grow in love for God and others? Genuine love is self-less. It focuses on others. So in your relationship, are the two of you focused on making the other happy, or are you in the relationship for your own benefit? Another way to tell if your relationship will help you become a more loving person is by defining how open the two of you are to new life. Two people who are committed to each other but not yet married reveal their openness to new life by never using artificial contraception at any stage in their relationship which means you remain celibate until marriage. But in addition to that important point, ask yourself if you, as a couple are comfortable sharing your faith with others?

The third question might sound odd, but it is really an important thing to consider. when you think about living the rest of your life with this person. God endowed you with gifts and talents for a reason… so you can use them for His glory and the good of others. This question will help you determine the level of harmony between the two people in the relationship… Is your significant other supportive of your interests and goals? Does this person encourage you to follow your dreams and stand beside you to cheer you on? I might add here that this is something you should feel comfortable doing in return. Can you get behind this person up on all his/her pursuits?

If you are wondering if you are in a relationship with the right person, I encourage you to take some time and reflect upon these questions. They are tools I use often in other types of decisions I must make as well and are very effective.

Mahakavi Subrahmanya Bharathi,The Great Tamil Poet Recognised As National Poet: A Brief Introduction

Mahakavi Subhramania Bharathi (11.12.82-11.9.21)or simply Bharathi was a modern Tamil poet recognised as National poet of India. He recognised Sister Nivedita, disciple of Swami Vivekananda as his mentor. He was a contemporary to Bengali poet Rabindra Nath Tagore. He had great reverence towards Madame Annie Besant and follower of Bala Ganghadhar Thilak. He worked along with extreme group members like V.O.Chidambaram Pillai and Subramaniyam Siva. He was living alternatively in Tamilnadu and Pondicherry. His poems are broadly classified as 1. Devotional songs 2. Patriotic songs 3. Biographical songs 4.Short narrations and 5. General songs. This article is a modest attempt to introduce this great poet to the readers who wish to know more about him.

Mahakavi Subramanya Bharathi, as a worshipper of UNIVERSAL ENERGY.

“I saw a tiny spark and kept it safe in a tree hole in a dense forest,
LO! The entire forest was reduced to ashes.
Is there any difference in fire as a new born or old?
Thaththarikita thaththarikita thaththom”

– Thus dances poet Subhramania Bharathi, in praise of Agni (fire) one of the five elements of the Universe He has sung in praise of several Hindu Gods in a way unique to him. Nowadays in almost all the school prayers, his songs on Gods are rendered to invoke blessings of the Almighty.

Bharathi found a special awe and respect for fire in his poems even in his worship of the Almighty. Though he wrote poems on Hindu male Gods like Krishna and Muruga, his description of Goddess of Power is unique.

He visualised Goddess Shakthi as the ultimate cosmic energy. He often used to dance in mirth praising the cosmic energy as:
“Let us praise the Mahasakthi (Cosmic energy) who has created the entire Universe,
She is hidden in the great five elements which constitute the EARTH,
She is the source behind all movements, speed
And all attractive forces on Earth,
She is the force of our lives and she is the food which men take to live
“Wherever you see, merges and finally collapses into Shakthi only”
which concept resembles the concept of ‘singularity’ in Science.

In addition to Hindu deities, he sang in praise of Jesus Christ, Islam also in his usual way. He was a lover of the Universe with special reference to the motherland Bharath in which he was living. He called her Bharathamatha (mother Bharath) and sang ‘vandhe madharam’ (Praise to my motherland). The phrase Vandhe Madharam had a magical effect on Indians fighting for freedom and several freedom fighters sacrificed their lives holding tricolor, close to their chests and raising this magical slogan till their last breath while being attacked by British soldiers. Alas! modern Indian youth are to be reminded of the supreme sacrifice made by young freedom fighters of those days to get freedom from foreign rule.

Patriotic songs:

Poet Bharathi always liked to compare Indian freedom struggle to the war of Mahabharath, the great Indian epic. For him, the British rulers were Kauravas and Indian freedom fighters were Pandavas. He had liking for extreme approach whereas Gandhians preferred to go by passive non-violence. Hence we could see his forthright disapproval of non-violent struggle in his songs. He said:

“My heart Does not tolerate these baseless people who are afraid of everything” in a melancholic mood as a direct reference to moderates and those who were indifferent to the violent struggle. However his reverence to Mahatma Gandhi, the advocate of passive non-violence was unique. He equated him with God and says,

“Mahatmaji, you are the saviour of Bharath, which was under the grip of poverty, ignorance and so lying low and so was a ruined country. You came as the saviour of this country Long life to thee, Mahatma Ji!”

He was deeply in favour of armed struggle for getting freedom and his leaders were Bal Gangadhara Thilak, Guru Gobindsingh, Dadabhai naoroji, Lala Lajpath Rai, V.O.Chidambaram Pillai who were all favouring armed struggle.

Bharathi was deeply impressed by leaders from abroad too. He was taking vow to get freedom for India in the name of Mazzini, founder leader of YOUNG ITALY.

He sang an elegy on the fall of BELGIUM in the first world war.

But what brought him fame in the international arena was his song on Russian revolution.

“Mahakali (The Goddess of power and cosmic energy) put her eyesight on Russia,
The revolution had its overwhelming upraise for ages to come!
The tyrant of Russia fell down.”

He compared the tyrant to the puranic monster Hiranyan and revolution to Goddess of Power. Goddess Power conquered him and reduced him to ashes

‘Bharath’ of Bharathi’s dreams:

“We shall walk along the peaks of silvery hills
We shall send our ships to deep western seas,
We shall construct schools in all temples and
We will proudly say we are Bharathiyans (Indians).
We shall construct bridge across the sea to Srilanka (Ceylon)
We shall connect both by broad roads,
By using the flooded waters of Eastern rivers
We shall irrigate in Central plateau
We will have our own weapons, produce papers,
We shall develop Industries develop education
We shall never rest, nor bow down our head
We shall uphold Truth and show our mite.”

Poets are of various types. Some write poems for money. Some poets write poems out of their immense love for the motherland and magnificent Nature and the Almighty. Such poets who write appreciating Nature have a Natural foresight and what they write in advance will come as true in later years.

We can see whatever Bharathi wrote in the above poem hundred years ago has become reality now. India has shown progress in all fronts especially in Science and Space Technology that India has already sent its satellite which landed on moon and the second is to land on Moon in the next six months.

His views on Woman Liberation:

He has got a special place in the role of Honour for great poets while considering woman His views on conjugal fidelity is very famous and quoted everywhere when the subject matter is discussed:
“When the question of sexual morality arises let us keep it common to both the sex” he declared when women were treated like slaves. His view on woman education also are noteworthy.

Walk with upright poser, look with straight eyes,
Don’t be afraid of anybody on Earth because of Morality,
Superiority because of flawless knowledge,
All these are possession of Modern woman”

Such women are known as Bharathi’s woman of New Age.

Bharathi’s poems are like an ocean. One can not go through the entire content in a short time. At least a glassful of his poetry has been given as above. If it kindles the interest in readers’ mind to go through the entire writing, the purpose of this article is achieved.

Love and Relationships: How To Talk To Parents About Interracial Relationships

Love is a wonderful thing and it can make the world a beautiful place to live in. This is the reason many are looking for love and if you have not found yours yet, then maybe it is time to look outside the box so to speak. Dating someone from a different race is not only exciting, but it opens up a new world for you to discover. Although interracial dating is common today and are widely accepted in the society, one has a long way to in terms of family acceptance especially if one’s parent’s do not approve of such relationships.

Overcoming Interracial Relationship Problems

Dating someone of a different color is a sensitive topic for some society especially those who strictly follow their culture and tradition. It can also be a big dilemma for one raised under these concepts and questions like “What their parents will think about the relationship?” and “What would others might think about them?” Many who date outside of their own race often have fears that their family will react negatively and would reject the relationship.

There are plenty of reasons for this fear such as incompatibility concerning one’s culture, ignorance and even misconceptions. That said if you are worried about how this would affect your relationship with your family, it is best to initiate it first to allay any fears that your parents might have about your relationship. It might be hard at the start, but doing it at the onset would save you some stress and help you enjoy your relationship.

Choosing the Best Way to Talk with your Parents

If you are not living at home, then you can opt to tell your parents about it during holidays or special events. If you think that they would react in a negative way, it is best to do so before your relatives arrive or after the party when the guest have departed. If you do not feel confident enough, you can drop in the news through lunch or over a phone conversation. It might be like a coward’s way to do so but it can save you from a lot of pressure and stress.

Be Calm and Prepared

Before you talk with your parents, it is best to be calm and come ready. Being calm will help you think about what you have to say when your parents question you about it. Show your parents that you are matured enough to handle any kind of relationship and are prepared for it. Some family members might react negatively and would start shouting or becoming emotional, by being calm, you will not add to the stressful situation.

If you have supportive family members, it is best to talk to them first so you can explain the situation and ask for their support should the time come when you have to talk to your parents. It is scary, but having someone to support you can boost your morale and confidence.

Do not Judge a Book by its Cover

At the end of the day, you might be surprise when they approve and accept your relationship. Although quite rare, many parents find it necessary to adjust to the situation at hand especially if you live in a different country or place. As dating someone from another race is not often discuss during family dinner or the topic never came up, you will never know what to expect.

Guitar Practicing Strategy That Improves Your Musical Creativity & Makes Guitar Practice Fun

To achieve greatness as a guitar player, you need to work on integrating musical skills together fluently. This means:

*Combining different skills, techniques or concepts together.

*Actively practicing the skill of being creative.

Question: “But Tom Hess, how can you practice “being creative” in your guitar playing? I’ve always heard you’re either born creative or you’re not.”

Answer: Anyone can become musically creative through practice and hard work. Creativity comes from mastering skills and integrating them together. Integration practice is what you need to become a more creative guitarist.

The guitar practice circuit below helps you integrate musical skills together:

Perform these steps continuously (don’t stop between them):

Step 1: Choose any phrase, arpeggio, scale run, riff or lick to work on.

Step 2: Play through this idea several times to acclimate it to your ears.

Step 3: Create four variations of the original idea. For instance:

*Alter the note rhythms.

*Use legato technique to emphasize notes in the place of picked notes

*Use bends and vibrato on some of the notes.

Step 4: Make four new guitar licks using the original rhythm of the idea. Alter all of the actual pitches while keeping the rhythm exactly the same.

Step 5: Utilize rubato technique. Immediately speed up or slow down, playing outside of the tempo.

Step 6: Alter the first few notes of the original idea and leave the rest of it the same. Make several variations of this.

Step 7: Alter the middle notes of the original idea, leaving the first and last parts the same. Make several variations of this.

Step 8: Alter the last three or four notes of the idea, leaving the first and last parts the same. Make several variations of this.

Go through steps 2-8 again with new variations from the original idea for twenty minutes. After twenty minutes, start again with a new lick.

Advice For Completing This Guitar Practice Circuit:

*Choose a guitar practice item that you can play correctly with ease. This way you do not become distracted by trying to play notes correctly.

*Focus on not stopping between steps. Move from each step to the next as fast as you can. This improves your fluency and musical creativity at a faster rate. Track how much time it takes you to move from one step to the next. This is one method for measuring your improvement with fluency and integration.

*Put together a list of creativity and fluency elements that give you the most difficulty. For instance: you might observe that it is hard for you to change rhythms and keep pitches the same or add legato technique to your ideas. This helps you understand what to work on to improve your integration and fluency.

FAQ:

Question: “Tom Hess, what if I am unable to think of variations to use with arpeggio patterns?”

Answer: Here are a couple of ideas:

1. Use rests (silence) at random points in the middle of an arpeggio rather than using the exact same rhythm for every note.

2. Use a different number of strings to play each arpeggio. An arpeggio is a chord made of 3-5 strings with notes that repeat at different octaves. Changing the pitch range of an arpeggio makes it sound more creative.

Question: “Tom Hess, how can I use circuit training with the rest of my guitar practice?”

Answer: Train guitar playing fluency exactly how you would train any other skill by adding it to your schedule. Effective guitar practice scheduling gives you time you need to improve skills that are weak so you can reach your goals faster.

Use this guitar practicing circuit like a test for improving your fluency and integration skills. Work with this circuit a couple of times per week to test yourself. Then use the rest of the time improving these skills so you can become more creative.