Archive for December, 2006

You Can Just Deal

Posted by on Saturday, 30 December, 2006

There are a few people in my life right now that are a great challenge to me. There’s one guy in particular that I want to mention. When I first started to get to know him, he was constantly being berated by others for the things that he said. The challenging part was, I felt that everything he said was true, and often rather accurately described something I was going through myself, yet somehow, coming from him it all seemed absolutely ridiculous. Sometimes it wasn’t even the things he said, but just his casual, carefree attitude toward things that I take very seriously.

For example, a small group of us were gathered to play some worship music at his house. After things had begun to wind down, he turned to me and said, “Play one of your songs.” Now a great number of things were going through my head at that point. First of all, my particular style of music has no place at a worship night. But then again, not all of my songs make you want to go right out and kill yourself. I even thought of three or four at the time that could have worked. But then came the question of whether I was even capable of playing them. For one thing, I don’t feel that a lot of my songs transfer well to acoustic (or even just one) guitar, but more to the point, playing guitar is not like riding a bicycle. You DO forget how. It had been a long time since I had played any of those songs and it would be really embarrassing to not know my own music. On top of it all, I really do not function well when put on the spot like that, and ultimately the best I could say was, “That’s probably not wise.” So I dodged that one. But he wanted to hear one of my songs. He wanted to hear MY music. I can’t begin to explain what that feels like.

There are obviously people who know that I write music that have expressed curiosity, but there’s something flimsy about that, like the empty promise of a “Hey, we should hang out ‘sometime’.” It’s a very different thing when I’m sitting there with a guitar in my hands and someone is asking me to play. It’s been a long, long time since that has happened. In fact, I wasn’t sure if it had ever happened, although that’s probably not true. Thinking back, I can really only even remember the first of my three girlfriends ever expressing interest in my music.

Now along comes this guy, just blindly stumbling onto a very deep seated need for of mine for a certain kind of validation, finding a button that I didn’t even know I had and leaning on it.

That seems to be pretty typical of him. The examples are too many to mention. It seems like every time I see him there’s something new that just makes me think, “That too? Is no part of my life safe from this guy?” I also have to say that his strategy toward women is definitely one that I had not seen before. I had heard about it before I ever witnessed it in action. When I eventually did, I initially could only watch in horror, thinking, “Someone please take the shovel away before he completely buries himself!” That slowly turned to amazement at the idea that such a method might actually work. (It really only has to work once I suppose.)

The strange thing is, I actually like this guy. I think he’s pretty cool, and we actually have a great deal in common. It’s just that my ego can only take so much. So finally I see what the real challenge is here. I spend so much time worrying about what is “appropriate.” I am in many cases so burdened by it that I am paralyzed with indecision. This guy doesn’t care about appropriate. He just dives straight in to anything and everything.

Ultimately, I see that he is who I could be, if only I could live without fear.


Posted by on Tuesday, 26 December, 2006

*I ran out of steam while writing this and never came back to it, so I’ll just post it as is.

So much has happened in the past month or so that I couldn’t begin to describe it. I did feel that I should say something about Christmas though, being that I am the only window into the Christian experience for some people. Then I did some back checking, and apparently I did not feel this need in previous years. So maybe I needn’t bother. Or maybe it’s way overdue. I tend to overthink things.

So, just to get it out of my system, let’s pretend someone has asked me, “How was your Christmas?” To which I would reply in typical fashion, “Better than Thanksgiving.” Which sounds like an answer, but actually says almost nothing at all.
“How so?” you ask.

I stepped on a bee on Thanksgiving Day. It’s the third or fourth time I’ve done that. (Not usually on Thanksgiving, just on the bee.) So I was popping Benadryl and smearing Cortizone on my swollen foot for three or four days, and I didn’t even tell anyone about it. Why? Because nobody asked. Not that I would expect it to occur to anyone to ask if I happened to have been walking around barefoot outside and chanced to step on anything unpleasant. But no one even asked, “How was your Thanksgiving?” At least, not anyone that I thought was looking for an answer more detailed than, “Fine, how was your’s?” The whole Thanksgiving holiday weekend was pretty terrible actually. I like to say that God kicked my butt for four days straight, and just to keep it interesting, on the third day He came around and punched me in the face. In fact, when I was making a list in my journal of all the things going on, the bee slipped my mind. It was that kind of weekend.

So Christmas? …Better than that. To be perfectly honest, I really just haven’t had much interest in Christmas for the past couple of years.