Jonathan Brainin asked a (funny – ha!) question on Facebook.
- a listening reminder: an objective external pulse, that invites me outside of my selfish, normally inward-facing thoughts so that I might practice aligning my body, hands, heart, mind and pulse.
- a connection reminder: a common, shared mechanism to connect with friends practicing elsewhere, together.
- a recording reminder: a device with a red light that reminds me that each moment is (or can be) significant, like the red light that goes on when something you're playing or doing is being recorded for later scrutiny, dissection, critique, mixing and/or listening.
- an expanded present moment reminder: a reliable sound that connects me to thousands of hours over 30+ years of playing along with this sound
- a rhythm reminder: a constantly and readily available signal to slow down and play with the flow of this current
* * *
On the practice of taking on addition of a “John Cleese moment” at the end of practice sessions and/or rehearsals:
"One of my Monty Python colleagues who seemed to be more talented than I was never produced scripts as original as mine. And I watched for some time and then I began to see why. If he was faced with a problem and saw a solution he was inclined to take it even if he knew it was not very original. Whereas if I was in the same situation, while I was sorely tempted to take the easy way out, and finish by 5 o’clock, I just couldn’t. I’d sit there with the problem for another hour and a quarter and by sticking at it, would in the end, almost always come up with something more original. It was that simple.
My work was more creative than his simply because I was prepared to stick with the problem longer. So imagine my excitement when I found this was exactly what MacKinnon found in his research. He discovered the most creative professionals always played with the problem for much longer before they tried to resolve it. Because they were prepared to tolerate that slight discomfort, as anxiety, that we all experience when we haven’t solved it.”
* * *