Change is coming. The writing on the wall reads a bit like an old fairy tale . . . distant and humble beginnings, a band of merry men, struggle, lessons learned, and adventures on the horizon:
Once upon a time, in a small southern town far, far away, I played boomstick in a loud rock band. We took great pride in our live performances, a product of both our love for great live acts like the Beastie Boys and the insecurity over not having a live drummer as a part of our band. So when we played a show, we tried to provide non-stop movement and endeavored to pour all we had out on the stage.
Equal parts catharsis and sympathetic endeavor, most shows literally tested the limits of my physical endurance; I would struggle to breathe and to move and to hit all the proper power chords in the closing minutes of a 45-minute or hour-long set. We would routinely practice a dozen times before playing a live show to be sure we had prepared ourselves physically to meet our exacting standard.
To help me get through the grueling final songs of a set, I wrote a challenge on the pickguard of my Tele: “Push yourself harder.” It’s been ten years since that line got me through a show, but it has stuck with me. Though a trite-sounding form of personal motto, it has rarely failed me. It will kill me someday, if I am lucky, but there are worse things to succumb to.
We are moving to the Republic of Palau in less than two months for a year-long adventure in Micronesia. For now, I am waist-deep in the logistical morass of packing up our lives here in Oregon and moving half-way across the world. Yet another endurance challenge that requires the occasional self pep-talk.
Soon I will stand in repeat and muted exchange with the Pacific Ocean. I plan to write about it and photograph it and report some of my findings here. BLS will continue its push despite the humidity and sweat involved.
Much more to come . . .