Saturday, March 17, 2012

Distilled Moments of Perfection

Every now and then I understand; I get it. Those times may be brief and fleeting, but they are the split seconds--sometimes minutes--which make life worthwhile. Or livable.

I had one of those moments tonight. For an instant, I had no thought of anything except, "this is great", as the rain and wind played their tune on Ballistic Cabin. I had just returned from an open mic night at Valley Music with Cliff and Linda.

I'd just finished making a sandwich which included a few good things, and a sprinkling of Richard's Delicious Seasoning. The rain picked up, filling the place with that muted sound which, if I'd opened a window would sound like a huge mass of people cheering or applauding. Or maybe thousands of angels surrounding the place doing a drum line routine.

I was settling in for the night and had not yet indulged the usual thoughts about what needs doing, what is not done, why am I so dumb, what will I ever do, woe is me, etc. No thought of any abstracts such as past and future, just the thought that I felt content, and pleased in that instant.

It seems that the real trick is to feel that good about life while doing things which make the world go round; like earning money, cleaning house, wooing women, wandering the earth...

At any rate, in that small moment of time, I think I had a grip on it, on life. Sometimes those moments are as frequent as one every day or two. Sometimes a year, maybe more, might pass without such a pause in all that bothers, or could bother.

Time passes between flashes of pure innocent pleasure, contented delight in being me (yet there is never a time when I would trade with anyone), where I am, how I am, at that specific point in time. I'm mostly OK with my life and my existence, (maybe passively resigned to it) but rarely so untouched by thoughts of the thoughts of others, my own shortcomings, blablabla.

It was a moment of perfection. I've had some serious ones which changed my life for a time. Maybe one of them saved my life many years ago. There I go, back to the past.

It was a fine time at the open mic night. I played with a guy who asked me to sit in. I didn't have a clue what either song was, but people appeared impressed, and said so. I'm so vain--if no one, or only one, had said anything I'd feel like I'd slipped up and queered the deal. (I like that expression because it is so almost politically incorrect. Even though it is technically safe and sound.)

I forget the song, but Cliff played a little tape he had in a portable cassette player through the microphone. I wish I could remember the song. It was a big hit for the Eagles, and the tape was of the guy who wrote it, singing it for the first time publicly, ever, by himself way back when, before he became part of the Eagles. Before there was The Eagles, I think. Famous song. Everyone but me knows it. Not the one about the girl in Winslow Arizona. Happy something or feeling whatnot. I don't know.

It was a significant little piece of modern music history there, and the only recorded record of it. The guy was playing Cliff's coffe house in the 60's at an open mic. They called it hoot night back then. You hear him say, "this song is really not completely worked out yet.". As it progressed, the crowd at Valley were blown away, singing along quietly. It was one of those tunes which marked a point the the lives of many people.

Well, I'm glad I could be so specific about the name I am dropping and the song he wrote.

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Ballistic Mountain, CA, United States
Like spring on a summer's day


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