Friday, September 16, 2005


So this morning... I'm going through a standard morning routine... Jeb's playin' in his playroom. Eli's still sleepin'... I'm surfin'... with the standard playlist rotating through in the background, while I sip some semi-fresh coffee.

Now.. ya have to understand that by 'playlist' I mean a collection of well over 2000 recordings. I simply get up and let it start where ever it left off... so I have no idea what's coming next.

Then it hits me...

A single... impossibly tightly tuned, kevlar snare... The standard cadence kick... An acented down beat rimshot that shouts "Pay attention boys, the shit is fixing to go down." Its followed by 3 8th-notes... then another accented downbeat... then three more 8th-notes... followed by a solo measure to intro the cadence.

That's how it starts... every time. My heartrate still jumps 50 beats per minute every time I hear it. It's amazing really... I'm sitting here at a computer... and sound alone... causes an instant physiological reaction. Pavlov would be proud.

For close to a decade I was that guy. I was the center snare in the badass drumline. My drumline. For those who've never experienced the power drums have on crowds... well... their skepticism is understandable... but there is a reason that army's have forever marched to drums.

We all have multiple talents... but we almost always have one that stands far and away above the others... and that was mine. Sky's blue. Water's wet. I can drum. Things other people had to work at... I didn't... I could just do it. Anything. Show me one time, and there it was. Sure, I had to build endurance chops... there's no way around that... but when it came to agility and dexterity... I simply had it. I could site read like a machine... I could memorize complex music in half the time the other guys in the line could.


Was I born with it? If I was... how did I know I was? JAC drummed... so one could argue that I just followed in his footsteps. OK.. I can see that... but lots of kids had older brothers in the line... and talent varied insanely from brother to brother. And if I knew because of JAC... then how did JAC know?

Progressives look at all this and see environment at work.

But this morning... when that lone snare kicked off the Blue Devils... my heart rate spiked to 120... I sat here.... sippin' the coffee... lettin' my mind replay all those days.... it's amazing how a decade of memories can flash through you in 4 seconds ya know? But then out of the corner of my eye... I realize Jeb is behind me. Staring at the speakers...

I put my hand on his chest... and his heart is racing. I'm not really sure I can explain the emotion that caused... Some may describe as pride... but I don't think it was that... it was some holy concoction of love, pride, anticipation, and joy.

I decided to experiment a little, so I switched to a different song... Jeb immediately shouted in protest, and even grabbed the mouse to change it back himself.

The boy was hooked at the first rimshot.

I know the feeling.

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