In light of the frustrating time I'm having making English horn reeds, I thought I'd share a nice email (albeit a mass email) from Brian Charles of Charles Double Reed Co. (He often has nice mantras on his blog too, so I've posted a link to the right.) Here it is:
In our part of the U.S. - the North Country - winter has many meanings. Yes there's shoveling and dangerous driving. Not so enjoyable. But, never forget that winter brings great opportunities as well. Unique playing, building: energetic fun opportunities! Just like reeds. Yes, like reeds. I know players who dread reed making, do it out of need, slog through it on their way to the good stuff - playing. I'm here to tell you that it doesn't take a radical shift in perspective to find the opportunity for enjoyment in reed making. Dive into your reed making with the same gusto you reserve for performance and discover the gifts that await you there. One of my favorite sayings with my students is this: You have a bunch of mantras you repeat to yourself such as: "I can't do it", which seems to be a favorite when they approach a difficult new challenge. Why choose that one? I challenge you to change your mantra today. "I can do it", "I can enjoy this", "I want to make this fun", and three goods ones to begin with. But the best ones, I'm sure, are the ones you'll discover once you get to the business of enjoying your reed making.