Ooh and Aah

I’m always a little anxious when I see two vowels at the beginning of a word, particularly when they’re the same vowel. Vowels tend to intimidate me. They can be pretty wishy-washy; unwilling to commit to one sound or another. That kind of flexibility (as well as the flexibility displayed by some circus performers) makes me uncomfortable.

How did I arrive at this uncomfortable place this Friday Blog morning? The answer is simultaneously simple and circuitous: Bohemian Rhapsody. I bought a ukelele last February. I watched Jake Shimabukuro’s online “How To Play Your Ukulele” class last week. Jake Shimabukuro plays Bohemian Rhapsody (WOW) on his ukulele. Bohemian Rhapsody contains the line, “Mama, oooh.”

While I have not yet opened the box that contains my ukulele, the lyrics to Bohemian Rhapsody have been circling my mind continuously since seeing Jake Shimabukuro play the song on the ukulele. Since the words were there, I thought I would think about them. Particularly, I thought about “oooh.” Those two “o’s” between the initial “o” and the “h” are like the dash between birth date and death date on a headstone. That’s where everything happens. With a little lilt up or down, we can move from happy to sad. We can go from scolding to scolded. We can convey confusion or confidence. There it is, that vowel flexibility that makes me squirm in discomfort. Aah, I know, I’ll listen to Jake Shimabukuro’s “Peace Love Ukulele.” It sooths my anxiety and inspires. The music is amazing and entertaining. The sounds he coaxes from the humble ukulele are beautiful, varied and impressive. This gives me hope for beauty in other unexpected places. Hope, beauty, ooh and aah are full of possibility. Life is good.

Unexpectedly beautiful blooms on my sage plant.

5 thoughts on “Ooh and Aah”

  1. Haha! I never thought of multiple vowels at the beginning of a word as intimidating, but I can see what you mean. I love the uke, although I don’t play it. The song for our processional in our wedding was Israel Kamakawiwo’ole’s “What a Wonderful World.” Izzy was a master.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. When I hear the word “ukulele,” immediately Tiny Tim and his song “Tiptoe Through the Tulips” comes to mind. I don’t like that song. Neither do I like Tiny Tim’s falsetto voice. Thus, the reason I don’t like the ukulele.
    After listening to Jake’s rendition of “Bohemian Rhapsody” (another song I don’t like, neither do I like any songs by Queen), you and Jake have now inspired me to buy a ukulele.
    My nephew in Ohio plays the ukulele at age eight. I was shocked that he would pick that instrument bc the image of Tiny Tim comes to mind when I hear the word ukulele.
    Thanks for opening my mind to this small instrument of guitar similarity. My younger sister attempted to play guitar (her fingers didn’t like the pain).
    I agree with Jake that “the world needs ukulele bc instrument of peace and the world would be a much happier place”. I’m always looking for methods for the world to be a happier place. Unfortunately, I still don’t like the song Bohemian Rhapsody.


  3. I had no idea that sage blooms like that!

    In 6th grade the music teacher in my school taught ukulele lessons before school. A couple of my best friends & I joined the group. Lots of fun.
    While going through things at my mom’s house a few months ago we came across the instrument. It was perfectly maintained in it’s case, still playing something similar to My Dog Has Fleas. Brought back sweet memories.
    Your pal,

    Sent from my iPhone

    Liked by 1 person

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