“I’m Not a Vampire But I Feel like One…Sometimes” – Lyric from Falling in Reverse

I”m glad for some things these days.  As I have a tendency lately to want to be alone with my thoughts, I find myself wandering further and further into a realm that I don’t want to be in.  I somehow learned to accentuate the negative in my thinking when I don’t want to.


The good thing about this is that it’s a behavior that was learned through role-modeling.  I love role-modeling for the simple reason that it can be unlearned.  A choice can be made for all the things that one learns in this manner.  For instance, I can choose to remain mired in self-doubt, isolation, and frustration, or I can choose to do something positive with all this energy I seem to have.  It’s a nice day, but I don’t feel like going out.   I’ll sit by my window, put my feet up and write something 😉 I think I’ll start with a small list of some of the things that have made me happy lately.


First of all, I am glad I AM NOT A VAMPIRE!



But in this case, I mean an energy vampire.  I’ve got a few too many of those in my life lately.  I don’t know what it is about me that makes some people think I want to spend all of my time dealing with their incessant problems, most of which THEY created for themselves in the first place.  I’ve got real friends who don’t do that to me.  At the very least, they will listen when I want to talk about what’s going on in my life, good or bad.  I have learned to value these friends very much.  Give and take means more to me now than it ever did.


Secondly, I am glad for babies.  Maybe it’s because it’s springtime, or maybe it’s because I’ve yet to become a father and my daddy instinct is on massive overdrive, but whereas I normally eschew contact with small, drooling, crying humans, I have grown to value the subtle ways that they can also make me smile.  Walking through Central Park lately and seeing proud new moms and their babies seems to cheer me up.  I thought I’d lost all my faith in the idea of family, but my secret sense of optimism comes out when a little one smiles at me.  One little girl even held out her hand to me as I walked past.  It was too sweet.  Of course, it helps that several of my friends have had babies.  E. is once again a proud papa, for instance.


I’m terribly happy about my drumming.  It’s about time I talked a bit more about this.


There’s nothing quite like being able to pick up a hand drum, slapping all of my energy into an animal skin and actually making some noise.  It’s pretty primal to me.  But to be able to do it in rhythm communicates something to the rest of the world that mere words just can’t.  The rhythms mean something different to every person who either plays or listens.


I was in Central Park a few days ago, and there’s this man that sits on a bench near my favorite duck pond and plays multiple Djembe drums for anyone who passes by.  he has the set up for a one man band, too.  A foot pedal sits on the ground just waiting for him to interject a bit of cow bell into the rhythms that he plays on his three drums.  I can’t help but smirk as I walk by him and think of Christopher Walken and his need for “more cowbell” on SNL.  But I’m also watching the people that walk by this man as he plays, and it just seems that most of them immediately relax just a little bit more.  Even business people with power suits and fancy shoes have slowed down to listen to this guy during one of the few free minutes they seem to have.  It’s pretty idyllic to hear such rhythms on a sunny, breezy day in the park right next to a lovely pond full of life.


I’d walked by this guy a couple of times and smirked at his rhythms.  But a couple of days ago, I had to get something off my chest and I didn’t feel like talking.  I found him sitting on his bench near the wooden tunnel  by the pond, and I just gravitated to him.  He looked up at me and smiled, asking me if I wanted to join him.


He didn’t have to ask twice.


I’m used to having people stare, but I won’t lie.  It makes me nervous as hell.  This man finally stopped me after he’d seen me walk by for weeks, and he just knew I needed to drum.


I’m not sure what either of us was expecting, but I wish to hell I’d had a recording device with me.  I hadn’t played with anyone so talented in almost a year, and it was just incredible!


More incredible to me was the reaction we got from people just passing through.  One woman actually sat next to us to just listen.  Others smiled.  A couple of men in jogging suits actually stopped and danced.  You just never know how people will react when you start to play a drum in public.  I can see why street musicians enjoy what they do.  We didn’t get money…at least none that I noted, but I didn’t care.  I was completely transported after a few minutes of playing.


I want to share some of m own beats with you all, since I’ve recorded some.  But I will have to find a way to do that next time.  I’m still getting used to this site, and it seems I might need to get a space upgrade just to upload a few wav. files.  Hmm..


I’ll take my leave, now.  But before I go, I might ask the few of you out there who follow me what a few of YOUR favorite things are.  I’m sure there is a stunning array, and I am interested in your responses.


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