benchmarksblog

WHAT I LEARN FROM LIFTING & PLAYING

Month: December, 2014

RESOLUTION

It was a shitty week for lifting.

I had planned for more intense sessions as a personal holiday present to myself and was looking forward to all my gym time.

But as each day came, I found myself needing to wisely scale down my ambitions.

What I wanted was not necessarily what I needed.

Playing 40 hour work weeks for the past month significantly knocked off how much weight I can usually push.

Forcing myself to do more would have lead to frustration and perhaps even injury.

I’m realizing that most resolutions are like that.

Success does’t come overnight.

It comes through being consistent.

It means showing up and doing what you can.

Keep nourishing, keep resting, keep putting in the time.

And keep growing.

 

 

 

 

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A DRESS

When she entered, everyone couldn’t help but stare in obvious disbelief.

The wedding dress looked like it had come straight off the rack from a bad thrift store. It was beyond retro-chic. It wasn’t even rachet. It was downright fugly. It was made from all synthetics.

The bride and groom, together with two friends, are deliberately sat at a small private table. In the back. So fewer people have to look at the cheap-ass disaster of a gown.

And we all felt some pity at that point.

She couldn’t afford her dream day.

And even if she could, what would be the point ?

She doesn’t have taste.

At the end of their meal, I diligently do my duty and walk over.

All I offer is a simple catalogued phrase:

“Congratulations and thank you for sharing this special moment with us tonight. Is there a special song I can play for you to end your evening?”

The glow on her face is radiant.

“Do you know To Make You Feel My Love? We got married 21 years ago and on our anniversary I put on my wedding dress, then we go out to dinner. I know it’s silly but I would love to hear our first dance song.”

It is now my absolute privilege to play this simple tune for her.

She’s not poor at all.

She’s blessedly rich.

Because her true love gave to her not just a partridge in a pear tree, not just 21 years of companionship, not even 5 golden rings, but a fidelity so strong it makes a pretty lady want to tell the world about it by wearing the ugliest dress in public once a year.

And the thing was still a perfect fit.

 

BY ANY OTHER NAME

There is a three-ring binder I keep in my piano bench it home.

It is filled with pages of clear plastic sleeves, 1o per sheet, each doubled stuffed with business cards.

A bursting reminder of all the people whom I’ve played for over the years, I periodically leaf through the book and visualize each person, connecting their printed name with a face.

And in spite of this, my mind decided that it was already on holiday this weekend, leaving me panic-stricken because I clean forgot the names of four cherished regular guests who have come to dine multiple times, on very significant occasions.

When I am called by name, I know I am meaningful. I am remembered. I am in someone else’s book.

When I can’t respond with the same familiarity, I feel immense pangs of guilt.

Thankfully, the sparkling and genuine reciprocity of a “honey” or “darling” sounds remarkably like everybody’s name.

I guess when you play from the heart, sincerity does all the calling.

 

 

BRUNCH WITH SANTA

I played my first date with Santa this season on Saturday.

He told me that I was on the naughty list and I had to wonder if it was because I had been a ‘ho ‘ho ‘ho recently.

Then I got back to noodling around.

Because Santa is the main attraction, I use this time to experiment with new arrangement ideas for my repertoire.

What surprises me is that people aren’t noticing the less than polished work I’m putting out.

I am told that I play with such joy, I become the music, and, that I am big part of the day’s experience.

It’s nice to be told that you’ve been good.

Especially when you’re not really trying.

But it leaves me to wonder how much better I could be if I tried.

So I’m going to be good for goodness’ sake.