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Neil Patrick Harris- Commentary! The Musical

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Seven Sins in Seven Days: Sloth

Hello ScoFans!
Another day has passed and another of the reasons I'm on the slowboat to hell is about to be shared.
Lust, Gluttony, Greed and now SLOTH (hence the cute little critter on the right. Don't you just feel like giving him a big warm hug?)
Now, today's post comes with a history lesson (courtesy of course, of the reliable fact checking folk at Wikipedia.)
Acedia (Latin, acedia) (from Greek ακηδία = neglect to take care of something - and in this case neglect to do whatever one should do in order to be saved) is apathetic listlessness; depression without joy. It is similar to melancoly, although acedia describes the behaviour, while melancholy suggests the emotion producing it. In early Christian thought, the lack of joy was regarded as a wilful refusal to enjoy the goodness of God and the world God created; by contrast, the apathy was regarded as a spiritual affliction that discouraged people from their religious work.
Why am I mentioning Acedia? Because...
Gradually, the focus came to be on the consequences of acedia, rather than the cause, and so, by the 17th century, the exact deadly sin referred to was believed to be the failure to utilize one's talents and gifts. In practice, it came to be closer to sloth (Latin, Socordia) than acedia. Even in Dante's time there were signs of this change; in his Purgatorio he had portrayed the penance for acedia as running continuously at top speed.
So, which of his many many talents is ScoMan not utilizing?
Well, for awhile there his gift for the written word was being wasted while he sat on the sidelines of the bloggosphere.
While he lives alone his ability to memorise the TV guide is next to pointless.
But the big one occurred during his time at high school (I know, a high school student wasting their talent. Who would have thought such a thing could ever happen?)
In the first term we were all taken into a room. A musical room. The "music room" if you will. We were sat down in a space that was far too small for our mighty number, and we had to perform a series of tasks to see if we were "musically gifted".
Being that it was hot and I was tired and didn't really care I just stumbled through the whole thing not really paying attention to what was going on and (as you may have guessed, otherwise this story wouldn't make much sense being mentioned in a post about talent) I got a letter in the mail a few days later telling me I'm awesome.
I've never doubted my awesomeness, but awesome at music surprised me.
But I ignored the letter. I hadn't paid attention, I wasn't interested, and the two most likely scenarios in my mind were that I had fluked the whole thing or that everyone got one of these letters because they were trying to fill their spots on the band (though in speaking to people it seems very few people got these letters)
My parents tried to talk me into it, and mum even drove me to the school on the night where people could sign up to learn an instrument, but I decided it was too hard and would distract me from things like television and video games.
The next year we had to seperate into groups and perform a song for the class. I ended up with a guitar in my hands while my group played the Corrs song "Runaway" (NOT our choice.)
Again, I didn't concern myself too much with learning how to play. I mean, I tried, for a few minutes, but it all seemed to complicated and I thought "I'll never get the hang of this" so I just strummed randomly at the notes and smiled my way through the song.
Parent teacher night rolled around and my teacher was asking whether I've ever thought of playing an instrument and telling me and my parents how I was a natural, I was just able to pick up the guitar and play the notes without immediately. The teacher recommended to my parents that they pressure me into playing something because "music can be a good distraction and stress reliever and blah blah blah" (of course she'd say that, she was the music teacher)
Mum said she'd tried, but I was stubborn.
We talked about it again on the car ride home, I told her I didn't have the time and I'd rather focus on my school work (she saw right through me and said I spent a lot more time focussing on television and video games than I did on school work) but still, I wasn't swayed.
I have mended my ways on the gluttony, and I'm wondering if it's time I righted this wrong as well (because I am, as you all know, a superhero) I got a nice tax refund this year, and while most of it has gone to new toys already (the Dexter soundtrack arrives tomorrow. Yay!) there's still a bit swinging that I could invest in a guitar and train myself to play.
Forgive me ScoFans for I have sinned. I decided Friends, Frasier and Seinfeld were more important than gracing the world with my wonderful musical gift.


  1. Again, no forgiveness needed. I suppose on a similar note, I was the same. Played the piano when I was little. Teacher told the folks I was a natural, could play without reading notes, by ear, at random...They went so far as to buy me a piano and parked it where I would have to pass it each and every day. I tinkered. Mary had a little lamb was AWESOME! Chop sticks. To me, it was pointless and I didn't have the time...

    Looking back, I regret that, only a little, okay, maybe more than just a little. Forgive me ScoMan, for I have sinned, as a twenty something adult, I sold the piano...As a thirty something, I want it back... =(

  2. The band director and his staff came by our elementary school and interviewed with all the 5th graders and had them perform random tasks involving music. I, much like you, didn't care too much for it and simply half assed my way though it all. I got the same letter inviting me into the band for 6th grade, and I disregarded it.

    I took up guitar later in life (1997) and quit after a few months, only to pick it up again in 2003. I still suck at guitar, and it sits in my closet, with a broken string, gathering dust. :\

  3. Pretty much ever awesome person in the world plays guitar. Hubs, Johnny Depp, Dave Grohl, myself... I mean you could not have chosen a sexier instrument to play.

  4. Hello Scoman!

    cheers to friends, frasier and seinfeld.

    i have this mental picture of the two of us, slouching on the couch, with a bucket of KFC on our laps, munching away the chicken wings, watching frasier. don't forget to remind each other not to laugh with chicken wings inside our mouth, alright? :P

  5. Im guilty of this every now and then, quite a lot actually these days. Laying around doing nothing, often skipping classes. Yikes.

  6. I definitely am guilty of this one, even though I try really hard!! It's the thought (trying) that counts, right?!

  7. omg you soooo hve to leanr to play the guitar...why you ask....cos i wanna learn too and am awesome and you are almost as awesome as me so this make take you to my level!

    i hve gotten better at this over the years. i was far more slothy in my youth than i am now.

  8. Music rocks - in so many ways!! I would DEFINITELY encourage you to start playing an instrument. I play the piano and although in Australia I don't have a piano and don't practice - when I go home for breaks I play and it feels - I don't know how to describe it - but when you can put your heart into music - there's nothing quite like it. :)

    Oh and reading this post made me feel super guilty. I don't think I've ever bothered to really understand ALL of the 7 sins - Sloth?? yeah ... I think I could fall into this category in many ways - I'm apathetic, cynical, lazy ... ooohhhh ... looks like I may have to do a little evaluating and changing. Darn it.


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