Not causing harm requires staying awake. Part of being awake is slowing down enough to notice what we say and do. The more we witness our emotional chain reactions and understand how they work, the easier it is to refrain. It becomes a way of life to stay awake, slow down, and notice.
i remember this day so clearly. I’m the one on the left, the one with the bowtie and boutonniere. It was so hot, I didn’t want to have my photograph taken. You can see by the look of my sister’s face, that she has somehow tricked me into doing it. On a side note, it took my mother three weeks to taylor that suit.
This painful version of George Jone’s tragic “last chance hit” is performed live at the Wintertide Coffee House by THE PAGANS, an ultra underground band consisting of two notorious island scoundrels: Slim Bob Bersoh & Timo Elliott, (originally recorded by Charles Esposito, later to be lost in the flood of ‘91.) The duo’s tongue in check rendition is a tribute to Mr. Jones. A man who had lost so much and yet gave so much. ‘He Stopped Loving Her Today’ revived Jones’ fledgling career, as it earned him a Grammy Award in 1980 for Best Male Country Vocal Performance, and it became the CMA Song of the Year for 1980 and 1981.
once upon a time i came across a beaten up guitar in a junk shop somewhere in michigan that looked just like the one pictured in this photograph. i wanted it buy it so bad. it had come back from vietnam with the signatures of the guys in some platoon scratched into the wood on the front of it. i nearly wept. i wanted to take the guitar and find the guys who had signed it and have them tell the stories of the times it was played and the people who had played it. at that time i was in no position to acquire such an object (an object of no perceived commercial value), and couldn’t imagine having the resources needed to research, travel, and produce a documentary film project on that level. but my heart ached to tell the story of that guitar and the men who had played it. the fact that it had survived the war, when many of those who had played it, or had been comforted by it, did not is a bitter-sweet lesson about the fragility of life.
Seth Godin, The Mindset of a Winner
when we were no one
some who irritated us,
some we loved
hiding in plain sight in a night of the endless midwest corn,
the great methane pile spread out in rows to the horizon
of an American September;
taking turns shooting an old…