Lessons from a Fantasy Princess: The Little Mermaid

Flawed But Fixable

Little_Mermaid_The

*Series premise explained and Snow White examined in the first part: Lessons from a Fantasy Princess: Snow White*

 The Plot

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A self-hating fish-woman craves the excitement, material splendor, and external genitalia of the surface world. Upon discovering a ship full of humans, she spies on them, becomes obsessed with a prince, and trades her voice to Ursula the Sea Witch for three days worth of legs. To make the change permanent she needs to obtain the true kiss of love or her deed of ownership will be transferred from Prince Eric back unto Ursula.

Ursula manages to leverage this initial bargain to guilt the king into giving up his magic trident, dignity, and status as a vertebrate. General mayhem ensues, and then Prince Eric drives his manly harpoon into the Seahag’s rear. Ariel’s voice is snatched back, more mayhem, and Prince Eric takes control of the situation by ramming the…

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The smartphone app that could save your life

How cool is this?

WTVR.com

PORTLAND, OR – An Oregon man said he helped save a life thanks to an app on his smartphone. When someone calls 911, the PulsePoint app does a search of the immediate area to see if there is anyone with the app who can help.

Firefighter Scott Brawner was off-duty and working out at the gym when he got an alert from PulsePoint. The app showed a map that indicated the location of a man nearby who needed CPR.

Brawner followed the map and ran outside. In less than a minute he found Drew Basse, slumped over in his car. His heart had gone into cardiac arrest. Brawner started CPR until paramedics arrived, an action that likely saved Basse’s life.

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“I cannot believe this thing worked,” Brawner said. “I just got done doing CPR from PulsePoint in the parking lot. Even now, thinking about it, it’s amazing how fast…

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It’s a gift!

Singing with my boys

Singing with my boys

There is something so deeply entrenched in our souls that makes us, the human race, sing. I’m not sure how it works, but I know, from experience and from observation, that singing is a natural, instinctual even, response and overflow of our emotions. We don’t teach people to sing in the same way we don’t teach them to walk or smile. They just do. It’s simply a part of life: A gift from our maker.

Yes, there are factors which contribute to better or worst singing (I’m a voice teacher, I should know) but in the end, whether in key or out of key, trained or untrained, in company or alone, we allow our feelings to surface as we sing or as we listen to the singing of others.

Do you have legs that work? Then walk! Who am I to tell you that my walking is prettier than yours? Sure, some of us can use our legs for marathons while others simply to transport us a few feet, but if they move, they move. I get it, I basically stink at drawing (my father’s visually artistic genes skipped a generation, apparently), but I refuse to let that stop me while playing Pictionary. I will draw, even if badly, because I have hands that work and eyes that see. So why not sing? We have a built-in instrument that goes with us wherever we go and that requires simply the flow of air and the opening of our mouths. Yes, yes, you don’t need to point out that some singing sounds, well, less than pretty, painful even, but if God intended for only some of us to sing, then He would have given only some of us the vocal folds to do it.

So, why sing? Because you can. And because it’s healing and affirming and all around fantastic. Sing when you are happy and filled with energy; sing with others around a campfire and feel the bond of frienship; sing when you are depressed and in need of a good cry; sing when you’re in love; sing in the shower, you’ll enjoy the acoustics; sing when you worship God, in your car and in your church, and while you vacuum your house. Sing because you can, and because it allows you to feel and to let it all out.

I teach music for a living and I lead the choir at my church. I constantly meet people who believe they can’t sing (when they can.) Such belief usually comes from a time in childhood when they were told by others that they didn’t have a good voice. I have met countless of people who refuse to open their mouths to sing because they are convinced they can’t do it. What a horrible shame. I am not saying that everyone has a pretty voice or that everyone has musical talent. What I am saying is that everyone should sing. Period.

Parents, let’s never tell our kids that they can’t sing! Instead, encourage them. Sing them to sleep when they are babies, sing along to children’s songs with nursery rhymes, sign them up for choirs and music classes in school and after school. If they have a passion for singing, do everything in your means to help them develop their voice and treat it safely, not to obtain fame and wealth (even though that does happen in some cases), but to have longevity in their voice, to bless others, to create songs and record them, and to sing to their kids and grand kids.

Singing is good. And fun.

Only some of us will be professional musicians and singers. Only some of us will be cast in shows or hired as soloists or selected for a band. That should be expected. But singing is not only for the professionals. It’s a gift from God to all of mankind. So sing and worship and cry and laugh, because that what singing is for.