I was at Chipotle recently, one of my favorite restaurants. I was going to say, one of my favorite Mexican restaurants, but I don’t really consider it to be Mexican food. Probably because I usually get the “burrito bowl,” since I don’t like their tortillas.
The letter was to Bruce Hornsby, whose PO Box address was listed in the liner notes of his Spirit Trail. Mostly I thanked him for his music and said he was an inspiration for my playing. He returned the letter with brief comments in the margins. I was absolutely thrilled. I might still have that letter in a box of other nostalgia. I recently received an email response that excited me as much.
I used to be so unsure of myself. Maybe it was junior high. Maybe it was just me. In front of the class my teacher would ask a question. I was somewhere in the middle—neither in the front with the ambitious students nor in the back with the ones who’d already given up at 13. Even if I thought I knew the answer, I would never raise my hand. Then another kid would be affirmed for his correct response, the very one I’d kept in my mind. Somehow in the past twenty something years, I’ve grown quite confident.
When I work on the car, I wish I had someone to help me understand. When I do some home repairs, I wish I had someone to show me how. In music, I’ve reaped the benefits of a good teacher. With guitar, though, I’ve been on my own. (It would probably be good to look into some lessons.)
We should never stop learning. There is so much to discover—this coming from someone who doesn’t like science—so much to learn about life and how things work and what makes people tick and how we can grow in our strengths.