Wednesday, January 25, 2006

After thinking about my blog yesterday, I realized that I was mistaken. Actually, I reached many of my goals. I ran my own graphics business, I was recognized as one of the top designers in the area, I was the leading graphics group in new technology, I saw my children graduate from college, I started a live music club...I guess I did real well. Sometimes we are too quick to judge ourselves and others. Oh there are some goals that I didn't reach, but that gives me something to keep reaching for. Most importantly, as I chased all of these crazy ideas, my wife of 27 years, chased them with me. Without her, it would have been difficult reaching any of these goals. How lucky am I to find someone who believes in my dreams. To steal a line from one of my friend's original tunes, "Life is Cool".

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

I'm a little overwhelmed lately. I can only do so much in a day. Or maybe in reality, I "will" only do so much in a day. When I was younger, I worked 18 to 20 hours a day, day after day. I just won't do that anymore. I don't know if it's because the mind and body are weak, or if the ends don't justify the means. Maybe if I were living the life of luxury today, I would be more likely to continue to work that hard. I didn't reach the goals that I set out to reach, and now I find myself changing my goals. I'm struggling with the logic behind that. Should a person put everything on the line for 22 years and turn down a different road? More later...

Friday, January 20, 2006

Is the guy sitting in the back of the room the one? After a show at the club, I was talking well into the night with Lil' Brian, the front man for the Zydeco Travelers. We were talking about performing, whether there are 2 people in the room, or 2,000. He has a very solid stance on this for such a young man. He said, "You never know when "the man" for Warner Brothers is in the house." That being said, Brian and his band put it all out, regardless of the city they are in or the size of the crowd. This got me to thinking. How many times have I "slacked" a little? Was "the man" that could make or break my business in the crowd? Lil' Brian's point was well taken. We should be on top of our game at all times, even when we've had too little sleep, or too many spirits. I became aware of this many years ago, yet I'm sure that I let myself down from time to time. One of the best examples that I like to share, happened to me about 20 years ago. I was out enjoying the night and got a bit sideways in a local bar. I proceeded to make sure everyone in the place was part of my fun. I didn't damage anything or anyone, but still over the edge. I made it home safe, early the next morning. The next few days went by with no baggage, and I thought, "Cool, I think I got away with one." AHHH...but alas, a few weeks later I am making a proposal to the decision-maker of a local business. You guessed it...I walk into the man's office and much to our mutual surprise, we "met" in the bar a few weeks ago. Little was said about that night, but needless to say, our meeting was awkward. I didn't get the business, but I did get another lesson. Lil' Brian is right, stay focused, you never know when your future might be in the room.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Do we still have the ability to learn as much each day as we did in our early years? I was with my grandson last night, who by the way turns one year old today, and he made me think about this. He is like a sponge soaking up everything around him. Sounds, facial expressions, reactions and even a sense of humor are all developing right before our eyes. It makes me what point do we turn off this amazing capacity to learn? I sure don't know everything there is to know. I do learn new things occasionally. Sometimes I learn them the hard way. I guess Jordan, my grandson learns things the hard way too. Like trying to get out from under the coffee table and banging his head until he realizes he needs to crouch down lower. I had an elderly man tell me once, "You'll see what I mean when you get older." I think he was telling me that I will keep learning, keep banging my head. As I get older, I plan to stay open minded so that I can learn more like a one year old.

Monday, January 16, 2006

I love Saturday and Sunday. I think I should stop working my graphics job on Mondays too. Then I'd only want another day off though, and soon I wouldn't be working at all on my graphics. I watched a football game Sunday between Indianapolis and Pittsburgh. Even though these professional athletes are overpaid, they are still humans filled with emotions just like the rest of us. Within a 2 minute time frame both teams went from thinking they won the game to thinking they lost the game and back. I'd hate to be a kicker. I guess we all feel like the kicker that misses a game winning field goal from time to time. The average person's "miss" is just as tough to handle, maybe worse...the pro kicker still cashes a huge paycheck. We had great music in our club this weekend. The JRZ System, Nick Moss and the Fliptops and the Jesse Lang band. I highly recommend taking the time and spending the money to catch any of these acts. You won't be disappointed. Speaking of spending money...why would someone sit at home, read or hear about some entertainment, get dolled up and head out into the night to catch the show, get to the venue and walk away because of a small cover charge? Is your pleasure not worth $5 or $10 bucks. I'd hate to think that a person would deny themselves life's pleasures for so little. Next time, go ahead, you're worth it.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Music truly is the universal language. My club hosts a live music jam session every Wednesday night. It's great to hear musicians step up and play or sing. The talent is amazing for a small city in western Iowa. Strangers getting on stage and playing together for the first time. Some of the jams sound like the players have been rehearsing for months. A blues player got up last night with a group of hard rockers...and fit in. How cool is that? I only play slightly. It amazes me that these muiscians can throw out a tune in the key of "G" and they all know what's up. I am fortunate enough to see world class bands on a regular basis, yet jam night is becoming my favorite night of the week. Sometimes I enjoy a little too much for a week night. I've been experimenting with spirits for 30 years, trying to determine where the line is between a good buzz and falling over the edge. You think you see it on the dark horizon, but you want a closer look. Closer, closer, closer...too close. You're on the bottom looking up again. I guess I'll keep practicing.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

I've always had thoughts rambling through my mind during the drive into my office, most of them going in and out so fast, they get no serious consideration. As I drive I have a habit of checking out the drivers in the oncoming vehicles. How many are male, how many are female, how many are Caucasian, how many are Hispanic, etc. This morning however I noticed a first, two females, three cars apart, had matching magenta hair. What's the chances that two women woke up this morning and said "I think I'll go with magenta today." My 1988 Jeep has a gaping hole where the radio was, thanks to someone who needed it worse than I do. So the rattling lifters and rumbling muffler have become my source of "noise" as I drive through the city. I should have the muffler fixed, but then the lifters would have to carry the beat on their own. Every morning when I reach the office, there is a little more than one cup of coffee left. I guess I need a bigger coffee cup. Isn't that the way life goes, there is always a little more than you can take in. Life is cool.

Monday, January 09, 2006

Ah...Monday! Sometimes it's hard to tell if it's the beginning of the week or the end. In my continuing effort to understand people and their likes and dislikes, I had another lesson this weekend. I book bands for a club...all types of music rock, blues, rockabilly, etc. People will pack a club for top forty cover bands, yet a select few show up for world class talent performing their own music. I guess if we all liked white milk they never would have invented chocolate. My son showed me a photo he took, that I've been thinking about. He captured a woman standing on a busy intersection holding a sign that read "Jesus Loves You". Makes you wonder, why would she take time to do such a thing. I mean I believe in a supreme being but I've never been driven to this extent...maybe I should. It also brings up something that I have questioned for years. We've all seen the message scrawled on highways and interstates around the country "TRUST JESUS". It looks like the same person writes this regardless of the location. Could it be written by the same person? Take note the next few times you see this message, I'd be interested in your observations.

Friday, January 06, 2006

I'm new to this form of expression. It is a strange concept, like writing in your diary for the world to see. As a marketing and design professional, I have spent the last 27 years trying to communicate one thing or another to people. I have tried to get people to respond to everything from beef liver to live music. I've used the written word in combination with visuals to reach people's emotions and desires. And now, people are expressing those feelings on the internet for all to witness, what a cool thing. After reading a few blogs, it's evident how much alike we all are. Wouldn't it be wonderful if everyone could express themselves in person the same way they can behind the veil of a website. I plan to dive into this form of media a little deeper, hopefully in some small way I can find my place in this "blogging".