Thursday, April 20, 2006

Not Just Another Day

Readers, this coming weekend marks the anniversary of two major events! It was a mere 36 years ago this weekend that conservationists held the first Earth Day. Just a few years before that, My Boring Best author Jim was born. So there is a lot to celebrate over the next few days.

Before I was kidnapped by bluegrass, environmental concerns – particularly the conservation of natural resources and the correction of environmental hazards affecting residents in urban environments – were a big focus of volunteer time. It's still a part of my lifestyle; as much as I can I stick with natural goods, whole foods, reducing, reusing, and recycling. I’m still involved with a group called The Earth Day Coalition (EDC), which got its own start marking the 20th anniversary of Earth Day. Local readers can head on over to the zoo this Sunday, April 23 to celebrate with information, live entertainment, tons of activities, and good conversation. Park your bikes valet!

In a way, it’s kind of sad that caring for the environment – which can be as simple as not tossing your leftover paint down the drain or letting your car idle while you run into the corner store to buy your Auto Lotto ticket – has become such a “movement”. There was a time when folks weren’t so disconnected from what the earth provided and understood the impact humanity might have on sustainability.

Likewise, we’ve gotten away from peeling back the layers of our own lives to reveal the basic beauty in the pattern of living, working, loving, creating, and leaving behind. That’s really all there is, and, it is organic. Everything we do, whether it is forging a masterpiece of writing, framing a stunning photograph, passing on a banjo lick, raising a child, planting a garden, starting an organization, seeding a fight, writing a letter, voting, cooking a meal…all are acts of creation. We may not always see or understand the things we do as having the capacity to change lives -- those of others or our own. Nonetheless, everything we do has an impact on someone.

I am very glad that my friend Jim was born. Jim is the kind of person that probably doesn't realize the impact he has on other people. He is passionate, highly imaginative, outspoken, brutally honest, hardworking, caring almost to a fault, and extremely talented. He encouraged me to get this blog up, inspired me to rediscover my intellect, brought a new perspective to my children, and has become one of my most trusted friends.

People like Jim, and like friends I've met who are dedicated to recreating the way we live, leave their mark without trying. They are the individuals who create, stimulate, and encourage change because it's who they are.

This song is about living the life we’ve got and trusting that it’s not for nothing. We’re here a brief time, we write our song or paint our picture, and then we move on. A lot of people close to me right now are going through some pretty tough trials, like the family I work for who just have almost indescribable stress on them right now, or some of the folks in my own family who are battling some considerable health problems. Life can be really discouraging. But we keep tilling the soil, peeling the onion, turning over leaves, putting our shoulders to the wheel to make something happen.

Here’s to understanding, welcoming, and celebrating whatever that might be.

Another Day
From Traveler(Tim O'Brien and Darrell Scott, Universal Music Corp/Howdy Skies Music/Famous Music/Sheddie Songs/ASCAP)

This world is made with sweat and toil, pushing muscle and elbow oil
We can't lie too long in the shade, cause every day must be remade
Some days you fall some days you fly, but in the end we all must die
Our rotting flesh and broken bone will feed the ground that we call home

But a new sprout grows from a fallen tree, my sons will go on after me
So lift your heart and dry your eye, it's another day to live and die

I've run naked in the wild, seen the beauty of a newborn child
Like the alchemists of old, I've tried to spin my straw to gold
Most times a giver, sometimes a thief, so full of hope but prone to grief Between freedom and despair, I know that truth is lying there
I've seen the truth, it's lying there

And a new sprout grows from a fallen tree, this world will go on after me So lift your heart and dry your eye, it's another day to live and die

So go on now, don't you worry 'bout me, you've miles to go and a world to see
My life's been long and full and good, I've run this race the best I could
It's a short time here and long apart,
But the same song rings in both our hearts
So take my guitar when I'm gone, write your own rhymes, then pass it on Just take your hit and then pass it on

Let a new sprout grow from a fallen tree, this song will go on after me
So lift your heart and dry your eye, it's another day to live and die
It's another day to live and die, just another day

3 Comments:

At April 21, 2006 2:21 AM, Blogger My Boring Best said...

I'd like to begin this comment by stating that I am happy to have been born! I think I get people to wondering about that sometimes.

Next, I'd like to thank you Mando for your kind words. You've become such a wonderful influence in my life, and you and your children mean the world to me.

Finally, I'd like to say that you have achieved a new milestone; in as far as your blog and I are concerned. Yes, I actually zipped over to iTunes from your post and purchased the song by Tim. I'm listening it to it right now. I really like it.

So thanks for the kind words and thanks for being in my life.

Jim

 
At April 21, 2006 6:31 AM, Blogger Mando Mama said...

WOW! Well, I'm glad it struck a chord.... And likewise I'm glad of all else. I hope you have a great day!

 
At April 27, 2006 5:37 PM, Anonymous Fearless said...

Jim should check out Karan Casey's version (which features Tim and Dirk) as well.

There's a great "backstory" to this song, IMHO

 

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