I’d like to tell you a story.  It’s about who I was and who I am and who I want to be.  It’s also about jazz.

One of my favorite observations about life comes from Moshe Feldenkrais.  He points out that at birth, the origin of seeing is in the eye, so if you destroy the eye you destroy seeing.  But later in life you don’t necessarily destroy the function of seeing if you destroy the eye.  Seeing has become something they do with their body and their mind, even if they have lost their visual sense.

As I’ve meditated on this strange observation, I’ve found it true again and again in other places.

I created a world that is believable, magical, compelling.  It has human, wonderful characters in it, and a few of my readers have expressed their love for those characters.  I solved a problem.

So why don’t I have more readers yet?  Because I haven’t shown most people how I’ve solved their problem.

One of my many roles is Music Teacher for the Willow School.  As part of that job I get to read articles on early childhood education.  One in particular, by a man named Trevarthen, has me thinking a lot about myself as a performer.

If you’re a creative person, you might hope that you’re extraordinary.  You might even believe it already.  But it’s actually not a good idea to think of yourself that way.

Tonight I almost had a head-on collision with a car, but veered and got away with a flat tire.  Every time I have a brush with injury or death I’m reminded of something.  There really isn’t time to waste being anyone but yourself.

I have some experience with crises.  There’s something really important to keep in mind when you’re in one.

You’ve gotten through every crisis you’ve ever faced.

I talked to my kids about global climate change this week.  It was hard to broach the subject.  I was embarrassed.

 

 I’ve talked about failing before, but this time I have some good news for young people.

In honor of my recent brave attempt to win another contest, I want to review, for myself and for others, what contests are all about.  There are ways to think about them that will make you a contender.  There are other ways to think about them that will make you miserable.

 

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