I've never been to Austin before or Dallas or Houston and I'm going around about to all three of those cities this weekend to sing songs with Darryl Purpose. This is a perfect example of my "Say Yes." philosophy. Darryl emails me out of the blue to come sing with him, I call my husband to let him know I was invited to go sing and then I say yes and figure it out. I leave this afternoon. I love music.
We were away for 8 days on vacation and, besides practicing, I didn't get as much music time as I'm used to and I'm feeling it. I came up with a verse and a chorus of something that is half clay blob/half arm and leg. I don't know what it is or where it's going, but I wish I had to time to watch and listen and find out.
It takes time to do lots of things, but it feels like time is something we've turned into Chiclets and Tic Tacs. We've chopped it up into tiny tweets and posts and shares and texts that we're not comfortable with big chubby chunks of time anymore. And by "we", I mean, "me." I know how to work with long afternoons and a guitar in my hands, but I have to choose it over the bread crumb trail I seem to follow over and over again into a dark wood just so I can have a little spark of joy with every like or comment or text.
What if we let ourselves think it through instead of react? What if we listened longer than the first sound bite before forming our opinion and what if we sat in the corner of a coffee shop to enjoy our brothers and sisters coming in and out the door, toddlers in tow, heads down staring at phones, hair askew but there nonetheless and took them in as strangers kindred in spirit? Don't let the shares and posts tell you something about something that has more to do with some online popularity contest in a culture of outrage and less to do with the humans walking with you and around you trying hard like you are and thankful for that blessed cup of coffee, just like you.
I think this parsing of time is killing us. I know it's killing me. I need long moments more and fewer tic tacs, likes and texts. In a world that feels so fragile, we can turn this ship around. I know it. There are things to discuss, but we should be talking face to face in pubs and coffee shops until 2am and not on the internet. We need to see each other, hear each other and not score points off of one another online. Let's face it, Facebook is an empty room where everyone is yelling at the same time. No one is really there.
So I'm going to miss my family this weekend, but I'm thankful for the waiting in the airport, the seat beside a stranger, the music and the new friends I'm going to meet. This whole weekend will be a big chubby chunk of time among real flesh and blood human doings just like me. I'm going to watch and listen, and try and work on that half man/half clay blob.
Get out there and do likewise in your own way. Walk with a friend, talk in the pubs, pull weeds, write a song, take your camera and capture moments happening all around you. I'll be better off out there instead of squaring off in a pretend room where no one really exists.