Over the weekend, I received an uncharacteristic phone call from the other guitarist in Cache. The night before, we had played at a private party, the very first time in front of anybody, and though it was hard to hear, lacking all the right equipment, I was pleased and excited with the blends and the confidence that grew with every song.
But there was a clue in his message, a phrase about hearts and minds, that tipped me off, so it was no surprise the next day to get a follow-up message that I had been voted out of the band. My initial reaction was a bit of a snivelly little boy whine (“…they don’t like me, boo hoo”), followed by a defensive snort (“…well, I’ll show them!”).
The truth, I told my son a few minutes later as we fiddled around with instruments in a music store, is very understandable and should be expected. If it is so difficult and takes such time, effort, risk and patience to find a girlfriend, multiply that by four and remember that everyone has to get along with everyone else.
It was a curious burst of emotion to absorb, especially on my birthday and combined with a similar heart throb that stole my breath for a little in the afternoon. Each event, however, was so full of appreciation and the promise of wonderful, exciting and ever unfolding adventure, like getting comfortable with not seeing any whale spouts, I found the joy in the day and reveled in the sunshine and companionship that was right in front of me, enjoying the best birthday ever.
Sharpened and inspired, the next morning I immediately placed an ad and scoured Craig's List for potential matches. Like the search for a date, I looked at bios and pictures, listened to voices, wondering how that keyboard might sound, judging this style too punkish for me, that finger too fast and wiggly.
Quickly, I received a message back from a young drummer who was very enthusiastic about the sound, my sound, and had some impressive local credentials, having already played with people more known than little old me. Emails turned into phone calls, and his excitement hurdled my concerns over his age and maturity.
Two hours flew by faster than most fifteen minutes. In the same way I might peek in and introduce myself to a new friend of my own son, his mother came down to say she liked the music, and was relieved, I imagine, to see the kind of man who might soon be taking her son to dark (and no longer smokey!) bars.
Likewise, by having the intuition to trust me so quickly to frame her paintings, a marvelous woman has also contributed to this lesson that the ones who do actually reveal themselves are able to honor, support and hold precious, with leviathan strength, our creative journeys no matter how young, or beautifully petite, these whales may appear.