When I was in elementary school, one of the highlights of my year was the annual field trip to see The Nutcracker at The Coronado Theatre in downtown Rockford. The theatre is as lavish as a palace; seeing a show felt so special. The lights, the intricate plaster work, the grand curtain--it was magical. I remember thinking to myself how amazing it must feel to take the stage in such a place.
Last night, I took the stage at The Coronado Theatre.
Now full disclosure: I wasn't on the marquis. Nobody paid money to see me. In fact, nobody knew who I was when I took the stage; I was just there to play a few tunes to celebrate the theatre's 90th birthday. And by the time I finished, I'm quite positive nobody remembered my name or my songs.
But I played The Coronado, dammit. And it was every bit as magical as I thought it would be.
It got me thinking about popularity and fame and how truly unnecessary those things are to live rich life. What if my name were on the marquis? What if people had paid money to see me? What if everybody wrote glowing reviews about how wonderfully I performed last night? Would it have changed how much I enjoyed playing a grand piano on the stage of my favorite theatre?
Not at all.
Reader, life is a series of experiences. I'm trying my hardest to delight in every single one of them, and not to let it matter what people think of me as I go along. If there's any part of you that's waiting to bask in life until circumstances become "just right," I invite you to join me in not giving a rip. Bask now, just as things are.
After a night of glamour, I'll be back to work as a general contractor at my building this week, and I'm putting the finishing touches on my latest album. Whatever you're up to, I hope you're reveling in it. -Em