Honestly, I screamed for a second when I got in the car after my bass lesson tonight.
Sometimes I feel like “Daniel Son” in Karate Kid when I go to bass lessons. I have been working on the same damn Bach piece for longer than I care to admit. I can play all of it; I just struggle to play it perfectly every time. I’m like.. 90% on it. When I started studying with Denson Angulo last summer- if you would have shown me the music and said I’d be playing it within the next year, I would not have believed you. Nevertheless… I’ve been working on it for MONTHS. Every week, I go in for a lesson, and that 10% that I’m missing holds an hour’s worth of lesson. One week it’s the position of my thumb on the back of the neck. Another week it’s my left hand pinky. Another week it’s timing. Another week it’s articulation. Another week it’s my right and string muting technique. Another week it’s fretting. Another week it’s my plucking approach. Another week it’s my left hand thumb AGAIN. This week, it was the simple alternation of my index and middle fingers as they pluck the notes. This DAMN Bach piece has been my cross for too long. I am so bored of it. I am so tired of it. And yet – every week, it exposes more opportunities to refine my playing. It lays bare the very fundamentals of playing the bass, and Denson will not settle for less than excellence in my mastery of the fundamentals. It is taking so long (granted, if I practiced more, the process would accelerate, but I do what I can given my schedule)… but Denson is widely regarded as the best. As exhausting as this is – I am grateful for a teacher that SOMEHOW makes it fun, interesting, and encouraging, to keep hammering away at these minute details of playing the electric bass. So… Denson, if you heard me – it’s all good, man. I appreciate you busting my chops and insisting on excellence.
On the way home from my lesson, I stopped in to IKEA to pick up a few paper globe thingys to use as light fixtures in my bedroom. There is something about IKEA that makes me feel so domestic – sort of. Honestly, it makes me miss having a wife. Not necessarily my former wife (with all due respect), but just… the idea of a woman at my side that I’m buying cheap wine glasses and picture frames and making memories with.
I felt really lonely tonight.
It didn’t help that this song was playing over the PA:
I know this song is not about being a conflicted quasi lonely bachelor, but I suppose some lines do speak to me on a deeper, private level.
“Wish that I could cry / Fall upon my knees / Find a way to lie / About a home I’ll never see”
I like to think I’ve been purposeful in my bachelorhood. I’ve had some wonderful women in my life during the last 6 years. I wish you could see / meet them. I adore them each in their own way. And yet, I ended those relationships deliberately, for what I thought of as a higher purpose.
Something about the “new stuff” smell of IKEA conjures nesting instincts. It becomes salient… I can almost feel a girl at my side that I adore, love, and make a life with. I imagine how fun it would be to look for the perfect lamp for our bedroom, and how stoked we are to find that new wok for only 5 bucks.
My home is very utilitarian. What should be the master bedroom is my photography studio. There is nothing celebratory or nurturing about my bedroom. It is small and shares space with my laundry, music practice area, and photo editing desk. It works, but it does not live.
Kind of like me, in some regards.
p.s. I really did score a new wok for 5 bucks.