Archive for June, 2009

Post #43: Busy, busy, busy?

Tuesday, June 30th, 2009

Dear Alice,

I still haven’t figured out to be relaxed about life and work. Is this something that comes with age, or will I always be an overeager beaver who takes on more than he can handle?

When I was in university, we had an event called “Spring Deports”. It was a big wrestling match in which the froshes have to physically remove the upper years from the college to the back fields. I loved this event, and every year, I would put my entire being into it. In my second year, I fought to the point of nausea. I threw up, and threw up, and then while walking out of the bathroom from puking, I felt another unstoppable surge. Someone watched as I brought my tired hands up to my mouth and puked some more. I could barely catch a breath, let alone hold down any water. It by far was the most physically drained I had ever been in my life. …Second place must have been when I did it again in fourth year.

I do this to myself all the time. I played Ultimate Frisbee this Sunday, and even though I had no water, I pushed myself hard in the heat, to the point where I was either charging for the frisbee on the field or panting, belly up, sprawled out on the grass.

It’s similar at work too. For some reason, everyone on my team has the impression that I’m busy, busy, busy. I don’t like that impression because it doesn’t fit into my worldview. If I were busy, then why am I always on facebook at work? (What I definitely am not is engaged at work.) It’s 7pm right now, and I’m still here. Note that I’m not working. I’m writing in my blog. Busy? Really?

When I am busy, I work up a storm. When I am focused, things get done now. It’s when all is said and done, and the world goes back to normal, and I finally remember to check my vital signs again that I crumble.

I’ve got a show coming up on the 10th, and I’m already kicking myself for having booked a show so close to the previous one. Yet, this is what I need! I need to have constant shows so that I can learn to regulate. Where is my routine? Where is my comfort zone? That is probably why I haven’t left my current job. Until I’m stable, I’ll need something stable.

David =B~)

Post #42: Smiling Buddhas for Everyone!

Saturday, June 27th, 2009

Dear Alice,

I should really write about my shows.  Unfortunately, it’s beautiful outside, so I’m going to go out first and maybe come back later and finish this entry.  Or maybe never return and this will be the last recording of my existence.

Post #41: Big Girls Don’t Cry

Thursday, June 18th, 2009

Dear Alice,

I’ve figured out when I cry at movies. It’s when the protagonist is empowered (or about to be) with the strength to get through something that previously must have felt to be impossible. In my own life, I cry after the drama is done, and I can finally sit back, relax, and burst into a puddle on the floor; but when it’s a movie, I’m already sitting and relaxing.

(Potential Spoiler Alert for “Bolt”, “Kung-Fu Panda”, “Slumdog Millionaire”, “Up” and “Spiderman III”)
(more…)

Post #40: Lucky at Dice

Saturday, June 13th, 2009

Dear Alice,

I won the hockey pool! No way! What’s remarkable about this is that I didn’t have a single player from either team that made the finals, AND the finals went to game seven! My 17 pt lead was enough to hold back 6 Detroit players and 4 Pittsburgh players.

It’s been a grueling week, as I’ve been pushing myself to do more than I usually do at a faster pace than anyone else really cares for - both at work and socially. At work, I took on the team lead’s responsibilities, as well preparing an important deck surrounding Air Miles points, which all had to be completed by Friday. Om top of that, I tried my hand at dating, and it was nice in a number of ways. It’s really amazing how much more alive I get once there’s someone in my sights. One date had me up until 3 am, and I was still more alert the next day than I had been all the previous week! I’m motivated by having a “she”, alright? Is there something wrong with that?

I heard once that being “Lucky at cards means unlucky at love” and I think that’s a sour-grapes argument. I HOPE that it’s a sour-grapes argument. Regardless, I think I’m going to be a bit more outgoing, in terms of setting up dates. The fighting through the nervousness seems to be good for me. Don’t let my (first) victory in a hockey pool ruin my chances at finding someone.

David =B~)

Post #39: Do What The Romans Do

Thursday, June 11th, 2009

Dear Alice,

I’ve got my second chance to wow them at work, and of course, it coincides with a busy after-work life. I don’t get these downpours.

I got interviewed for a TV show! Myself, Ivona and Jelena were sitting outside at lunch, when a guy & girl approach us. They’re looking for young adults to go on a show about Toronto (called “When In Rome”) and they had a 2 minute questionnaire for us to fill out, if we were interested(!!) Ivona couldn’t, as she goes on vacation on Sunday, and Jelena didn’t pipe up, but I was ready to take ‘em on.

“Name three universities in Toronto.” Easy. UofT, York and the Rye.
“Name your favourite museum.” Um… the ROM isn’t my favourite, but I’ve never been to Bata, Casa Loma, or the AGO (which is an art gallery, no?).
“Name your favourite area in Toronto.” I’ve lived mostly in the Annex.
“Name an influential person who’s put Toronto on the map.” Miller and Chow are too obvious! Think of someone interesting… David Suzuki, I said… only he’s from BC.

When they asked me what I like to do outside of work, would you believe that I said Rock Climbing? I then followed up with, “but I’ve been doing a lot of Ultimate Frisbee”. It was Ivona who had to pipe up and say, “Music! He plays music! He does shows, and he sings, and he *air guitars* plays on the guitar!” It’s weird, but I just didn’t think about it as something I do to relax. Music is my passion, but it’s work. Anyone who knows me knows that I stress over my songs. I don’t write to unwind. …Maybe that’s why I’m so high-strung.

Anyways, they took my picture, and I’ll hear back from them in two days. Hope to hear from them. I might get to play a song or two for them, and perhaps get to dedicate “The Distance” to whom I should have said are Toronto-map makers: the Barenaked Ladies.

David =B~)

Post #38: Designated Pinch Hitter

Tuesday, June 2nd, 2009

Dear Alice,

I played a show outside of the Free Times Café! Aren’t you proud of me? Here’s what happened. I decided to go to a show to see Larj (pron: large) play for the first time, only to have bells ring when I heard that one of the acts couldn’t make it. I simply said, “Hey there! I play. Would you like me to fill in? Here’s my website, with sample songs.”

I couldn’t stop smiling, it was so nice being on stage again. During sound check, the sound was awful! I hated it, and was second guessing myself. Then I realized that it was just the monitor that sounded like a MIDI recording. I stepped off the stage, and the sound coming out to the audience was *much* better.

I did a good set. (WVW, StayHome, Distance, YMM, and Colour) Good enough to get invited to one of the performers’ birthday parties, even though we trade few words off stage. (His name: Joel Chico. Nice story telling stuff. Brave man to do improv. on stage.)

LarJ was good. I invited him to play at the Free Times on Thursday, only to find out that he’s playing this Tuesday as well! Geez! Three nights this week?! I hope he’s cool with that!

By the way, I confirmed this: I’m such a sucker for vocalists. Sing? Sing well? I’m yours. So what if we just met? Take me home, pleeeeeeease? Seriously, it’s fun meeting these people and trying your best to keep your cool by not melting into their laps. I had to keep reminding myself that there’s more to life than a beautiful voice.

What else is there to note? I’ve been practicing how to play solo, but I still freak out, and forget to find my bearings. I think I’ll be better at my own show, when I’m not playing to a new crowd… but who knows? All the practice in the world, and here I am, buzzing out simple single notes. The City Song and I guess Colour My Numbers are the solo chances I’ve got… so tomorrow’s another attempt.

Wish me luck, mo’fo,
David =B~)