11 December, 2009

The Things I Do For My Writing: Friday Prayers Edition

So I'm reading Spaces Speak, Are You Listening?  And discussions of aural space have got me wanting to visit a cathedral so I can inspect the architecture and experience the auditory effects firsthand.  There's one right here in Seattle: St. James.  They're doing a New Year's Eve concert.  I wasn't going to bestir myself from the house on New Year's Eve - I hate being out and about on holidays - but this counts as work.  I can hear how acoustics work in a building like this, enjoy some classical music in the bargain, and hopefully the place will be crowded enough that they won't realize a godless infidel's in their midst.  I don't mind mixing it up with the religious, but conversion attempts are bloody annoying.

Actually, Catholics haven't proven much of a problem in that regard in the past.  Most of my Catholic friends just give me a sunny smile when they discover I'm an atheist and move right on to other subjects.  I figure if I get cornered by a priest, he'll be happy enough to talk about the building and the music that we won't be debating the existence of immortal souls and the damnation of same.

Thankfully, my short days as a Christian way back in high school mean I do not have to suffer the acoustics of poorly-sung insipid little hymns belted out in disharmony in a crappy-ass little prefab church.  Been there, done that, ran away before they could sell me the t-shirt.  I remember the agony all too well.

So that's where research is trying to drag me.  I'm putting my foot down if research for writing ever demands a visit to Jesus Camp.  We'll just go with the movie, thanks ever so much, as if that wouldn't be horrific enough.

3 comments:

Andre Vienne said...

The acoustics in a cathedral? Generally pretty amazing. I got to play around in a proper one in eighth grade, but down here in San Antonio, a lot of Catholic churches are built to have similar, if not perfect acoustic qualities as well.

You'll love it. Even the lamest high school choir can sound good in a Catholic church.

That's really the only reason I'd even consider returning to church; the hymns, done well, can bring tears to the eyes, as they have a way of shaking the long bones in a way reminiscent of a good rock concert, only in a more reassuring manner.

... And I just realized I'm getting dragged to Midnight Mass this year. Oh dear.

NP said...

Enjoy the concert! And the architecture!

Efrique said...

I can hear how acoustics work in a building like this, enjoy some classical music in the bargain, and hopefully the place will be crowded enough that they won't realize a godless infidel's in their midst.

Hardly. Atheists look just like everyone else. Unless you're wearing an A t-shirt or start engaging people in debate, they won't even think about it.