Do you want something?

English: A picture of The Verve performing at ...

The Verve at Madison Square Garden


Yesterday I wrote about my mishaps and poor performance at my church’s first open mic night.  The stakes were low.  The mistakes were high.  My disappointment matched the mistakes.

I was unprepared.  I was uneasy.  My friend asked me to do this open mic because they weren’t sure they’d have enough performers.  I got there.  I saw no shortage of performers.  I could have backed out.  I didn’t.  I committed to my friend that I’d get up there.  I also committed to myself.  If we won’t honor our commitments, what will we honor?

Even if I was well prepared, I would have been nervous.  It was my first time singing in front of an audience within memory.  It was my first time performing in front of a sober audience – period.  It was the first time I’d play guitar in front of more than 5 people.  And I’d only played in front of 5 people once, in my house.

It was my turn.  I got up.  Things went wrong.  I sat down.  Life went on.  It didn’t matter.  If I had been in front of Madison Square Garden it would not have mattered.  Because, frankly, not much matters.  We just imagine it does.

The next afternoon, I still felt beat down from the dismal performance.  I picked up the guitar.  I started playing.  We lined up the twins in their high chairs.  They started smiling, clapping and singing babbly non-sense.  It was a great show. And it was a show that mattered.

Better to do something than nothing.  And when you screw up because you were unprepared, or mis-prepared, misinformed or inexperienced, or whatever … better to do something again and get better.

If you don’t do something, you’ll be left with nothing.


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