Steve Cook's soul, song, and sweat.

Shinybass journal entry 02-13-12

Valentine who?

Don’t give in to the dark side!  It’s a scam! I swear.  OK, for some of you it’s not a scam.  For whatever reason, you have a really hard time showing affection (this is directed to both men and women, but not puppies), so you use the fateful day of February 14th to ‘get right’ with your partner.  Shameful.  You should be buying flowers on August 4 (which is Johnny Cash Day in Arkansas, and National Mustard Day), not the 14th of Feb.  I don’t get it.  How hard is it to say ‘I Love You’ the other 364 days of the year?  If you aren’t the chef in your household, then email me, and I will send you a recipe that will be sure to please every other day of the year.  My point is: Don’t just save up for this one special day.  Make as many days as possible your Valentine’s Day.  Marketers (I majored in Marketing) from all the major ‘love’ companies (jewelers, restaurants, flower folk, et al) make you believe you are less than human if you don’t buy the biggest and best for your other.  And my favorite line of bullshit – Say I Love You with _____. With what?  The purchase of a new Mercedes?  I can think of a lot of ways to say I love you that has nothing to do with my credit score.

I’m off the perch.  (But not the salmon – which I cooked last night – oh wait! It’s not Valentine’s Day?)  I’m kidding – I’m not here to tell you all how great I am.  My brothers both cook much better than I, and they make 90% of the meals in their households as well.  It’s a gift.  Or a curse.  Or maybe just our controlling nature.  Again, I am not here to judge, since I would be judging myself.  And speaking of judging, did we watch the Grammys last night?  I think time has proven that if you just stand there and sing/play your ass off, then you don’t need the ‘cover up’ of ridiculous productions and ‘stories’ and Manaj/Perry/GaGa-type numbers.  Adele, Sir Paul and the Foos rocked the house, with not so much as one burning crucifix or spandex-clad eunuch.  Learn how to play, and play or sing the best you can.  That’s about all there is to it.

So on to more meat in this sandwich, speaking of curses.  I am cursed with a odd condition.  I have no idea if this condition has a name, well, I am sure it does, and I am sure there is a prescription for it as well (because if there is a disorder called ‘shift work sleep disorder’, then just about everything is a syndrome of some kind).  On a side note, have you heard of that crap?  SWSD is from working, say, long hours, and maybe alternating shifts at the factory.  Symptoms include lack of sleep.  Hmmm, I thought it was called ‘Parenting a newborn’ Or maybe ‘Police Officer’ or ‘Musicians who are on a radio tour’.  Give me a break.  Get off your crutch of medication and get going…

But my condition, aside from meandering through the streets of a little town called ‘Random Thoughts’, is that I am always, always looking to see what ‘else’ I can do.  In not so (or too) many words, if I am on the phone, I will pick up a broom to sweep so I can make the best use of my time.  If I am walking from one room to the next, I will take my wine glass and drop it off at the kitchen to save myself a trip.  If I have an hour to kill before sound check, I am off and around town to sight see to make use of my time.  It drives some folks crazy, but when the commercials come on, I am up and refilling my drink or I’ll take that 3 minutes to load the dishwasher.  I am constantly in motion.

It’s not OCD, because my house isn’t spotless and I can basically ‘not’ do these things.  It’s not a fixation of any kind – I think more than anything, it’s a work ethic.  I learned from my parents years ago about the ‘benefits’ of making use of your time, and then when I waited tables, they drove the notion of ‘keeping busy’ into your brains.  They were getting the most out of that $2.13 an hour they had into you.  ‘You got time to lean, you got time to clean!’  Maybe that’s not a good reference, because that’s not multi-tasking, it’s just working under a dictatorship-like regime.  As I worked as a bartender, I learned that I could pour several drafts at once, then as I delivered them, went to the kitchen to run my food, then came back and took drink orders as credit cards were running through.  I guess all that training carried over.

So how does any of this apply to life?  Well, in my professional career, I have had times of ‘inactivity’, i.e. – the slow times.  In these ‘in-between’ times, I have found ways to keep busy.  This means practicing, repairing gear, reconnecting with industry people, and writing.  So follow me, if this makes sense.  If my live shows and sessions are the TV program, and the down time are the ‘commercials’, then I try to be busy during the commercials.  Is this crazy?  Is this being too motivated?  And when do you get time to unwind?  (I do find time to relax, so no worries there).  Now apply that to your lives.  What are you doing in the ‘in-between’ times to make ‘You’ better?

I’m not going to go any further than that.  You interpret this any way you want.  If you need a boost today, hopefully here it is.  If you need more of a boost ‘filling in the holes’, then email me, and I will try and help.  Life is too short to watch the commercials.

See you on the road!




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