Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Pickin on the Music In My Life (So Far)

A friend of mine introduced me to this exquisite ukelele artist over the weekend. I had heard his work here and there but never just sat, and took it in.

I don't imagine many of us are accustomed to thinking about ukelele quite the way Jake Shimabukuro plays it. But actually it figures pretty heavily in the string bands of the Ragtime era, so it's not quite as far flung from bluegrass music as one might be tempted to think. It's a handy little instrument with a sweet sound not too unlike the mando.

Today brought a lot of kerfluffle and the temptation to deviate from living and enjoying my life. I'm still not sure how I'll be moving ahead but I don't have to decide today. For the moment it's best to just acknowledge the first 43 years and the many people and experiences who have been a part of the journey. Every single encounter has taught me something in one way or another. Most of what I know sure didn't come from my expensive Denison education. But that's ok. That era was important too, it brought a number of important people into my life and in a roundabout way, my children.

There is a lot in the news right now about how so many people are deciding to recreate themselves. It's unfortunate that this is treated most of the time as a negative, probably because of the stress related with having to do it in the worst economy since FDR was our POTUS. But my guess is that many people will find new meaning in working, new ways to be creative, new opportunities to put otherwise unused talents to use, and new networks and social groups to bring their passions and interests alive. When we are open to even the most daunting changes, life has a way of working out.

Of all the things that bother me, change really isn't one of them. My mother was one who seemed to roll with the punches and although she was less flexible and more hardened later in her life, she always believed that things happen for a reason. Even though I've abandoned pretty much anything else that suggests we're not entirely responsible for our own actions, I will always feel there's a little truth in that mantra of hers.

Before life brings you more daunting changes, take a moment to enjoy young Mr. Shimabukuro perform this instrumental. I know a few of my friends from The Martins Ferry Beatles Years and beyond will appreciate this little tribute to long evenings at my mother's house talking with June Anne and listening to the Beatles. Those were pretty neat times. It's good to know that some of the best things in my life were in some of your lives, too.


At March 25, 2009 11:26 PM, Blogger Ipsissimus said...

I think this really is the "holding onto your identity" season. It's hard to move forward when everything around you is moving backwards. All wa can do is hold tight, hunker down with our good friends and family and wait for this storm to pass.

At March 26, 2009 7:08 AM, Blogger Mando Mama said...

True enough, Ips. Things do seem to be moving in what might once have been perceived in "the wrong direction" but I think it's all in how we look at things. If we can as you say hold on and be creative and view the eye of that storm through a different lense we see opportunities and solutions that weren't there before.


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