Surprise: Turns out, learning how to play the Violin is hard. Moreso, it is even harder when you are a 50 year old failure with mobility issues, medication that numbs your extremities, and the onset of arthritis.
Nevertheless, I have been trying to practice every day, for at least 10 minutes each day. Trying, mind you. I would in fact actually be lucky to get in 2 to 3 such practices each week, because Life, and Pain. Not trying to make excuses or sound whiny here, just stating the facts.
I leave the Violin case in my recliner each evening, when I leave for work, so that I don’t miss my next morning practice. This not-so-subtle reminder to practice rarely works, though, because by the time I make it to the chair to sit down, I am about to eat my “dinner”, or am exhausted or just too sore to break out my violin. I tell myself I will take care of it ‘later’, but does that ever happen?
Yes, but rarely.
Now then, when I was talking about teaching myself to play the violin, many of my more musical friends suggested that this might just be a Really Bad Idea™. They specifically noted how the intonation on the violin is really, really difficult… and it is. Yep, they were not wrong about that, at all. It was suggested I take up the Mandolin instead, as I play a little guitar and bass, and the Mandolin is very similar to those instruments overall.
Did I listen, though? Of course not. Scormey don’t take no good advice off nobody!
Anyway, I am just going to have to apply myself more, that’s all. I have my bow grip down, but I’m finding it difficult to hold the violin properly without pain, even with a shoulder rest. Maybe I should just try a soft cloth, instead? My collarbone would thank me, I’m sure. It is this discomfort that really has put me off practice, I think, but I need to power through anyway.
If I can just do ten days straight, at ten minutes each day, I’ll be fine after that. I heard somewhere that if you want to do something important daily, just do it 10 days in a row, and it will become a habit. I’ve done this in the past with guitar practice, and it works. But it is getting to that 10th day without any missed days that has been a real bear for me, this time!
My goal is to be playing short bits of music in a few months, and maybe record a new theme song for the “Pixels & Dice” podcast before the end of the year. But to get there, I need to practice, practice, practice!
Even if it kills me, or makes me miss the occasional livestream.