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Yesterday’s post made me think of something funny…

I wrote that I used to joke about starting to play the drums at 37;  I was a little self-conscious about it because every musician I met was in their 20s or early 30s and they had all been playing for years.  Mark, the owner of the music store where I bought my drums and took lessons is a ball-buster (which I love in people) and we used to joke a lot about my being old and about everything else.  In fact, I became good friends with both Mark and his wife, Christine, and I miss seeing them regularly since I moved out of Jersey City.

One day my drum teacher, Kevin, told me that my homework was to find someone to jam with, versus just playing along with music on my headphones as I had been doing.  He felt that was the next step in my developing as a drummer.  I was beside myself.  How would I find someone to jam with?  I didn’t even use the word “jam” in a sentence unless I was making a peanut butter sandwich, and anyway I would say “jelly”!   The only musicians that I knew were professionals and I was too much of a novice to jam with them.  Would I have to troll the streets for young musicians, schedule a jam session with them and then send them an Outlook meeting request?  That was my standard operating procedure at the time!  I was completely thrown for a loop.

Thinking he would be able to provide some guidance, I shared my concerns with Mark.  A week later when I came in for my lesson, Mark said to me, “Guess what?  I found someone for you to jam with.  She’s a bass player and she is at about the same level as you are so you two should be able to play and progress together.”

I was so happy.  “Thanks Mark!  That’s awesome!”

“Sure,” he replied, “just let me get permission from her dad because she’s fourteen.”  And then he laughed.

Ugh. 

The moral of the story is….you have to be able to laugh at yourself.  I still snicker when I think of that moment.

Have a good one!

Today is my 40th birthday.  I feel like I should say it is hard to believe but that would be untrue.  I keep track of my birthdays like a child.  And I celebrate them like a child too, often for weeks at a time.

I always joke that I don’t feel old because I am so immature, and when people say I look young I explain it’s because I don’t have kids to worry about.  After having been a teacher, I know how being responsible for young people can age someone!

Maybe I don’t feel old because I really try to maintain an attitude of “it’s never too late”.  When I was turning 37 and just coming out of a very rough personal crisis, I decided to do three things:  throw myself a birthday party because I have no shame, buy myself a drum set because I always wanted to play, and start dating someone 12 years younger than me because that’s what you do when you are having a mid-life crisis.  The party was a blast and the relationship didn’t last more than a couple of months, but I still play the drums.  I always had wanted to play but never tried it, and once I started I couldn’t stop.  I would rush home from work to play, which was challenging considering the job I had at the time, and every time I was done practicing I had a huge smile on my face.  The bonus was that by picking up the drums I ended up meeting my husband.

Since my last birthday, I got married (actually right before my birthday), started the consulting practice I had dreamed of for almost ten years, had my first baby, and moved into a new home.  Yes, it was exhausting.  My life is now 100% different than it was when I was turning 37, and 250% better.  All of this happened because I didn’t feel like it was too late to start playing the drums.

The moral of the story is that it’s never too late to do or try anything.  Around the time I bought the drums I felt a little self-conscious about it, which led me to make jokes about the decision.  One day I joked about it to someone in a cafe while we were waiting in line (Jersey City is friendly like that) and he said, “Don’t feel weird about starting the drums at 37.  My mom started her Masters degree at 40 and she always said that in five years she would either be 45 years old with a Masters degree or 45 years old without a Masters degree.”  If that isn’t a great attitude for embracing life, I don’ t know what is!

Try something new!  It’s never too late.

About Me

The purpose of this blog is purely self-expression - being creative for the sake of being creative. It has evolved into a collection of non-fiction essays.

All of the anecdotes and incidents you read in this blog are completely true and not exaggerated, no matter how sad, pathetic or unbelievable they may seem.

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