Sunday, August 22, 2010

Status (or: Gold singer)

With "star alliance", a group of a few different partner airlines , I already managed to accumulate a respectful amount of miles. I have flown so much in the past years, that I am now a "Gold member" of their VIP club.
This entitles me to unlimited visits at all their lounges around the world's airports, special first class check in, free upgrades and all kinds of other sweet little treatments.
Before reaching this status, I was content flying like a normal, middle class person, but since I have become "special" I can't imagine going back.
The smiles at the first class check-in desk, the (politely not even mentioned) "you are over the weight limit, but oh well, you are important so we'll let it go", the civilized, quiet, sophisticated well air-conditioned room on its leather arm chairs and well dressed, well behaved businessmen, the free full breakfast/ lunch/ dinner/ cocktails/ snacks/ magazines/ internet services upon my arrival at the lounge,these little things I now feel I *deserve*, will not easily be given up or forgotten. In fact, in my world, they now seem almost necessary.

I enjoyed watching the film "Up in the air", about a frequent flyer who's main goal in life is to accumulate a life-time highest "status" with his airline.
It might seem like a sarcastic joke to you, but to a frequent flyer, who is away from home for most of the year, these little touches make life so much more bearable.

Don't think for a moment that airline glitzy statuses come easy. You need to fly enough miles and enough "segments" ( what is that?) during one year, with your company, to get it right and , you also have to maintain that flight frequency in order to remain a V.I.P.
If you haven't flown enough, you could at any moment , be demoted!

I live in fear.
(Am only joking here, but maybe not a full 100 % ).

This airline status, reminds me of a singing career.
How easy it is to get used to a certain illusion of success,money, respect, glamour, (this, a singer can be fooled to believe in over the course of even one single production), but how with the same easiness, you can fail to achieve enough (or so simply : fail), and get dropped.
(First to drop you, would be the fickle public then the hiring companies then your management. And If you are still buckled on that unlucky coaster ride, it could even continue into your personal life, until you've been dropped so low there's nothing bellow-er anymore).
I see this happening to colleagues left and right, and I am trying to stay afloat here, on my humble "silver" singer status, not even "gold". LoL.

On my recent visit with my parents, my mother asked me :" What will you do when your shining star goes away? let's assume (being positive) in 10, 15 years or so? what will you do?"
… What WILL I do after I have sung the Carmens of the world, stumbled through some other operatic repertoire, had my one woman cabaret / recital show, have gotten older - my skin, breasts, vibrato- all defeated by gravity- , got cast as "the mother" and then "the grandmother", until there is no role old or small enough for me? (that is most likely to happen , in opera years - around the ancient human age of 50 or so )…

That was a question with no immediate answer to be found.
(I hope that by the time this happens, I can still visit my mother and let her believe that I am singing Carmen at the MET and at Covent Garden and at La Scala , and , like a good, trusting old mother, she would really and truly buy my lies and be content).

What will I do when I don't fly consecutive gazillion miles per year, when I get kicked out ,dropped from Golden heaven, becoming once again a faceless dot in a loud crowd of ordinary people at an airport, standing in line, if able to, in order to buy a small overpriced bottle of water?

" when life gives you lemons, make lemonade"
…I guess I'd have to try to make a lemonade with this ridicilous water I'd just bought at $4.99? …that's if I can find a slice of fresh lemon and some sugar anywhere… I guess I could always beg the lady working at the lounge to be kind, for old time' sake, and slip me some…


Blogger patriciab said...

Dear 'Rin', you are young, hugely talented & beautiful, enjoy. I only know you from your performances & writing but I feel you are a grounded person & you will be fine! When you are old you will sing in your house...for YOU ! (and your neighbours!!)I think you will always 'make lemonade' as that's the way you are... we love your singing and You : o )

4:35 PM  
Anonymous Jhibek said...

That is a very tough question...but I hope that you'll find the way to keep your voice, to take care of do your best. Maybe you'll just find some new activities to keep in touch with music, theater or any other form of art. Just try to manage your finances, to stay stable...
But the most important is to be optimistic and just enjoy your amazing life)))
There are a lot of things that can make you happy - no matter if you are "gold" or "silver" - you'll always be brilliant)))
P.S. It will be great if you'll dedicate a part of yourself to help ppl...maybe with some charity - it is always good for a soul!

9:02 AM  
Blogger Andrew Richards said...

Written so well I must share it on FaceBook. Well done, Rini. There's a lot here, too much for one reading. I hope my own family and friends will read it and understand our lives a tiny bit better.

11:04 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

well my Dear, maybe by than the publishing world would realize at last what a great writing talent you are and publish your blogs in a book!
(as i have been telling you for Years!) as someone who had been a teenager with you i KNOW that you will NEVER get old. in your 50's will be a great time to reunite with that hard core punck band (infected mashrooms was it?) or start your own...??
in any case you will always have a platinum status from the few of us who are fortunate enogh to be called your personal friends. and there is NO WAY we are going to drop you. face it baby, great voice or not- you are a hopelesly LOVABLE person :-)
miss you! xxx/Nuli

10:46 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

a wonderful and frightening world this is; but dearie, you wouldn't be singing if you could foretell the אחרית. isn't art after all an exploration of the unknown?

(well, at least it should be...)


11:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

When gravity has taken all the goods away, you can teach what it was like having everything you have to others!
You are living the life of so many dreams that are being dreamt now, teaching is something that can continue shooting your star through the world.

5:40 AM  
Anonymous Jung said...

I've watched "Up in the air" these days too. Well, the film is a hybrid. Its backdrop is despair, but the foreground action has the silvery zest of a comedy.

3:21 AM  
Anonymous George said...

I will bookmark your post and share it with my collegues. The life is unpredictable and much tiny than we think in reality. Dear Rin, You will still sing and make a lemonade....

3:04 AM  

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