today's school walk theme, comfort

this yammering was on the home trip from school. I got the low-down on my high-flying neighbor's time in Austin (this is the Emmy Award-winning neighbor). He's pumped because a band he plays with was voted number one of 1,400 bands in Austin by the LA Times. Very cool.

The neighbor mostly talked about how much he likes playing with Big Al Anderson. The best part of this current round of excitement isn't the admiration, the money and all that (at least when he was talking to me, the less wealthy neighbor. Dude's a diplomat). It's that the guy he's playing with/for/whatever has been his role model since he was twelve and that Al is a nice guy. The professional musician neighbor hates meeting a lot of the big names because so many of them are assholes. Not Big Al. That's cool--and so's the fact that the band isn't full of partying drinkers and they all have kids. It's a comfortable fit for a guy who saw 20 a while back.

I keep trying to figure out what personal success means because when I hit my late 30s, had my last baby, it seemed like it was time to push or give up. I hadn't really defined it for myself because of my singular lack of ambition.

I've met some Big Time Names, people who've had Success as defined by outsiders and it turns out I was right in a lot of ways. A lot of capital S Successful types apparently also define success as the little stuff that can be achieved in all sorts of lives.
* Doing what you want to do with your on-time, not just off hours,
* doing it with people you like or admire--or both--and
* doing it in a place and wearing clothes that make you happy. (There might be big money for a lot of those capital S people but, eh, that's something else.)

The neighbor asked me about my writing. I said Summer was doing okay but Kate hadn't sold in a while. He said next time I sell, I needed to get a publicist and go on tours and signings. I said nah and then he agreed, nah. He added that he's excited about going on tour but it's not a life he wants forever. He has a kid and doesn't want to miss seeing her grow up.

Of course now he's the one being offered the chance at capital S. I'll check in with him later to see if hitting the big time in his field has drawbacks other than missing his kid's bedtime. For his sake, I hope not. The rest of us who don't make it might like the comfort of knowing capital S Success isn't fun after all--but I want someone else to tell us about that. Someone less deserving should be the one to tell us capital S is not all it's cracked up to be. Not my neighbor, who's a great guy and already had rough winter with an Attack Snowblower.

* * * * * *

OH! and speaking of SUCCESS, I just got an email from fellow Romance Unleashed writer Pam LeBud saying she got a very nice call this morning. . . .


  1. I come from a family of over -achievers, but I never had much ambition further than not having to worry about paying the rent.
    I have friends who are movie stars, famous singers, writers, and obscenely wealthy. Are they particlarly happy? Only a few. And I'm happy most all the time. (The village idiot c'est moi)

  2. I dream of book signings, the room packed with squeeing fangirls demanding I sign, first, their books, then, their breasts. Both of 'em.

    It could happen!

  3. Wait a second. I forgot. I'm an ass man.

  4. Doug - have you considered becoming a tattoo artist?


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