I've been away from the forum for awhile, and was playing sporadically. But over the past month and a half I've been playing almost every day, and my chops seem to be back in order. A couple of observations: 1. My Connstellation 28b is a much better horn than my Xeno- so I got rid of the Xeno. 2. My music comprehension is better than it was, because I actually started to read and do more etudes. 3. Not playing for awhile made me conscious of HOW I actually play. I have started to stay out of the MP a lot more...One weird side effect is that I can wail on an old Al Hirt Model A I have (which I used to always bottom out in).