Taking Yourself Excruciatingly Un-Seriously

Excruciating as in painful. I’m not sure if that word actually means ‘painful’, but for some reason my head is saying yes. Either way, making less of yourself can hurt…a lot. I talk about this often…the whole, not taking yourself too seriously thing. And you’ll find in life that usually, when people talk about something a lot, that’s because they struggle with it, and are using a reverse defense mechanism in order to somehow try to deny struggling with it. However, in my case……hehe. Nope. I struggle with this a lot. And as Lewis points out, it’s pride…not vanity. Vanity is the need for attention from others, stemming from loneliness and a desire to be with other people. But pride, yikes. Pride is the desire to not only have oneself be more important than anyone else, but also to feel the need that you deserve that importance. And the approval from others isn’t used to view yourself as ‘fitting in’, as vanity would have it. Rather, it’s used as confirmation in your own mind that you do, in fact, deserve that importance. Or as Guy Ritchie puts it, ‘Fear or revere me, but please think I’m special. We share an addiction. We’re approval junkies.’

And the only real way I’ve found to combat this in yourself, is honesty. As in, a true, real, and honestly painful look at yourself as who you really are. Which is hard. I find that even when I’m being honest, my mind is already working the angles that this honesty can show me to be a good person…because of how honest and open I am. Scary, huh. So, as I was watching Star Trek two nights ago (oh, don’t worry…that’ll come up), I decided that it was time for a really honest post. Like, really honest. One that puts me back where I should be in my view of myself. One that allows for the thought that if it is indeed true that there is a God, and that He loved me enough to die for me, then I am definitely not good. I think usually we like to use the term ‘good enough.’ We’re not ‘good enough’ to deserve that. Which implies that there is some goodness in us. Which I think invalidates most of that book the prophet Isaiah wrote. The reality is, we’re not good. Not even a little. And I think that the less seriously we take ourselves, the more we can grasp that. Not in an intellectual way; that part’s easy. In a real way. Meaning, ‘effecting change in ourselves within the reality we currently live in.’ It seems sometimes that in spiritual circles, we tend to focus only on understanding everything in an intellectual way, and think that it naturally translates into our actions by some weird osmosis or something. So here’s the thing: it doesn’t. There are real steps that need to be taken. And one of those, is the most incredible medicine ever. And it’s called self-deprecation. ;) Not like saying, ‘Oh, I’m stupid’, when you know for a fact you actually have an above-average IQ; but actually being honest about things you’d rather not be honest about.

And I’d totally suggest this. Probably online. (I say online because I do this to my wife sometimes…listing off all my instances of ‘loser-ness.’ And while I’m sure she appreciates the humility, I know it also makes her quite bored. Although she still listens, because she is amazing. By doing it online, you give people the opportunity to not listen if they get very, very bored. :) ) Here, on your own site, or even just being completely open and honest to yourself.  It’s frightening how even in our own thoughts, we’re usually not. To quote Christopher Nolan, ‘So you lie to yourself to make yourself happy. We all do it.’ Ya. So this is my therapy. I’ll probably look back on this in two years and go, ‘Wow, that wasn’t honest at all.’ But it’s where I’m at now, and that’s about all I can do. And again, I would completely recommend this. It is so choice. ;) Also, so that I don’t feel alone, and because with each new comment on my blog, I feel validated. Aech. Honesty is starting already.

  • I get a small, shooting feeling of excitement that I try to deny when I hear another guitarist make a mistake. Even if he’s on stage with me.
  • Last night, at a worship night, I could not find the key of G with my voice. Not even a little.
  • I wrote a very long intro to this post on not taking yourself seriously. Probably taking myself a little too seriously there. ;)
  • Sometimes I double-check my pedal connections to avoid having to stand around awkwardly. This is insecurity.
  • Sometimes I double-check my pedal connections to avoid having to talk with people I know very well. This is just plain bad.
  • I went to the gym a couple nights ago. (And for those of you thinking this is actually a backhanded way to brag about the fact that I did, in fact, go to the gym……when I got to the shoulder press machine, it was set at 135 pounds. This made me feel very small. I won’t tell you how much I normally shoulder press, but it does not have 3 numbers in it. It barely has 2.) And Star Trek was on the gym tv. I am not a trekky, and so I turned the television off. Then I thought that it might be really funny in the blog to make fun of whatever was happening in Star Trek, and talk about it as if I accidentally watched it. So I turned the tv back on, and subjected myself to William Shatner in order to say something funny on my validation meter……uh…blog. And here it is. ;)
  • I have this recurring dream that I get on stage and right on the downbeat of the first song, I realize I’ve left my rig in the car. I then spend the rest of the gig-in-the-dream trying to set up a rig that just keeps getting bigger and bigger, all the while playing it cool as if no one is noticing.
  • Last week my D string just would not tune. Because I was turning the A string peg. I used to think I’d eventually grow out of that. Nope.
  • I’ve told the same joke in back-to-back services, and pretended it was off the cuff.
  • I still get this nervous feeling deep in my gut when I’m pouring my heart out leading worship, and I look out and see blank stares. Then I start over-compensating by trying too hard. You know that look of trying too hard when playing music. It looks like the girl lead singer for that band from Wayne’s World. Ugh. Just gives you shivers of grossness. And my voice gets over so slightly British. And I probably turn on more delay, too.
  • As much as I talk about minimalism, I still feel the need to try to play at least one of the fastest riffs I know (usually that’s not saying much) in all my pedal demo videos, just to prove that I can play that stuff, it’s just that I choose not to.
  • I have chosen songs for setlists before according to what makes me feel cool, rather than according to what I feel God’s telling me the people He loves need to hear.
  • Sometimes, when I can’t think of anything original to play, I listen to obscure U2 b-sides, steal the ideas, and hope no one notices.
  • There is a part of me that hopes you will think I am admirable for being so honest in this post.
  • Sometimes people annoy me.
  • Sometimes I’m humble just to be exalted.
  • Last Sunday I slid into a few notes on a riff. I knew the congregation probably didn’t notice, so then I wondered if the rest of the band did. Probably not. And by the time I was done thinking, I was positive in my own mind that I had played the riff perfectly.
  • Bono says that there must be something wrong with someone like him, who needs the validation of 70,000 people screaming for him. I relate a lot to that. But I’m not sure if I really do, or if I just like the thought of Bono and I feeling the same thing.
  • There are times when I like myself more than I like God.
  • There are times when I feel like the rules don’t apply to me. Like Neo. (Not Keanu Reeves, mind you. The character of Neo. And yes, that is nerdy.)
  • Sometimes…*sigh*…no, not sometimes. I really like Star Wars.
  • Somewhere, there’s this little part of my mind that still truly believes that Capitol Records will watch my youtube channel, Johnny Buckland will read my blog, and Chris Tomlin will be at my church this Sunday.
  • I still can’t figure out how to use my Ooh Wah well enough to do a demo of it. hehe
  • And lastly…the most horrible one of them all…sometimes (man, this hurts) I can’t tell the difference between a Blues Driver and a Zendrive. Sometimes. ;)

Splendid.
Karl.

39 thoughts on “Taking Yourself Excruciatingly Un-Seriously

  1. I know exactly what you’re talking about when it comes to stealing stuff from actualy artists. I stole that whole “Reverb+Delay+Bigsby Bend=Awesome” from Ryan Adam’s Love Is Hell, and I passed it off as my own. Same goes for bending to create atmosphere.

    I am SO original. :D

  2. what a thoughtful post…a bit of transparency is good for the soul. I “hate” that verse that says that one day all things hidden will be made public…so, I’ve made it a habit to make sure that all things are public NOW! living with nothing to hide is the best way to live…I LOL when you said what you did about the Ooh Wah…I didn’t demo mine…just sold it! anyway, I love posts like that…Karl, you really are a broken human being! welcome from the rest of us who rely solely on God’s mercy and grace!

  3. Karl, I can’t even tell you many nightmares I have had about me forgetting my gear or my pedals aren’t hooked up right. And then I am trying to set them up in the dream, but for some reason everything is just so much harder to do in dreams.

    This is mostly when I dream about getting back together with my old band five years ago. We used tracks, ear monitor, and clicks and stuff. And it would usually take us longer to set up than to actually play our set. It was so stressful.

    Aren’t you just jealous of those people with roadies who do all that crap for them?

  4. The first thing that came to mind when I read this is Karl needs either a mentor or at least regular doses of fellowship with the entire worship team.

    I think some of us take these things seriously and others don’t. Sure, there are varying degrees of dedication — it’s not just black and white, but the more you care about worship and doing a good job for the Lord and your congregation, the more you’ll agonize.

    I try to talk to my wife about these things, but she usually responds that “it sounds fine.” She’s not a musician but I really think she doesn’t want me dwelling on the details. But that doesn’t help me get the load off.

    As far as the worship team serving as mentors — not sure — the dedication just isn’t where I’d like it to be. Sure everybody has a life, hobbies, issues, crisis, unemployment, car break-downs, kids, etc etc etc. If you’re free of most of those things and really focused on the worship team/songs/sounds/congregational response, etc. this lack of intensity in others can be frustrating.

    I just started a web site for my team, mainly hoping they’d listen to the mp3s of songs we may want to do later. I’m not getting my hopes up about them visiting the site though: http://sites.google.com/site/ccgdworship/

    • I completely Agree Randy. I try to debrief after worship sets with my wife and she always says, “worship was awesome.” That’s what I love about this blog. It’s like I’m fellowshipping with someone (who I don’t know) who agonizes over the same thoughts and emotions that I feel when trying to lead worship and play guitar to the best of my ability.

      I find it extremely hard to seperate my pride from my performance (playing not showiness) during worship. I am constantly trying to be better and give my best to the lord and sometimes that turns into pride. That’s another reason why I love talking to musicians about it because they will be the first to tell you, “you were out of tune” or “your guitar was a bit shrill” or the classic “the drums were too loud” (that ones just for fun :) ). Bottom line is we are fallen and imperfect and as long as we keep our focus on pleasing the lord with our talents we’ll be all right.

  5. I can tell the difference between a Blues Driver and a Zen!
    Mainly because I really just don’t like the BD.

    However when people play the SD1 or TS9s I have a hard time distinguishing it all. Kinda makes you wonder how tone is really perceived huh?

  6. Seth J–lol We guitarists are crooks! hehe

    Robin–comment of the day. You truly ‘get it’, brother. Just a bunch of hopeless people united by one really amazing hope. And great call on that verse, too! That’s a frightening one for sure. hehe Cheers, bro.

    David–really? haha That makes me feel so much better! I truly thought I was the only person in the world having those dreams. hehehe

    Randy–I do agree that there is a relation between caring and agonizing over worship. But my point is less about focusing and agonizing over the little things, as it is about using the little things to bring us back down to earth when pride starts to set in. It’s not really agonizing over the little mistakes in worship and in life, it’s actually rejoicing over them! Because they are what show how truly we can’t do it on our own, and how it is not about us whatsoever. :) We practice, we work hard, we agonize, and then at the end of the day it’s still painfully obvious that we’re human. That doesn’t mean we stop working hard; rather, we keep working hard, and glorify God that He is made perfect in our weaknesses.

    Larry–guess you got better ears than me, bro! :) And no, a stock SD1 and a stock TS9? Very little difference to my ears as well. And if you open them up, there’s very little difference in the circuit, as well. Cheers!

    • “We practice, we work hard, we agonize, and then at the end of the day it’s still painfully obvious that we’re human. That doesn’t mean we stop working hard; rather, we keep working hard, and glorify God that He is made perfect in our weaknesses.”

      this is the single most important passage that I’ve read on this whole post … so far :D

      we just keep doing what we’re doing and God will fill in the gaps, no matter how big the whole is!

  7. You’re not alone Karl. You’re not alone.

    And I constantly turn the wrong tuning peg. Maybe the new Polytune will help me with that one. Yeah, more gear.

  8. it seems as though we are up to 3 of us (including myself) who have dreams about being ready to start a gig and realize our stuff isn’t set up. anyone else?
    i was talking with a very wise worship leader friend of mine and mentor about fear and insecurities the other day and he proceeded to say some things that spoke so much to my heart in the moment that i had to write it down. here is the gist of it
    -fear, if left to run its course will nullify a mans potential. fear in the moment will cause u to hesitate which in reality makes your fears come true. Instead of letting the Lord take control, we take control, and that nullify’s God’s influence on our lives.
    anyways, some good stuff in there, not totally on point with everything but i think it applies.

  9. Rhoy–totally, brother! :) Love it.

    Nate–haha Awesome. More gear means better sound…right? ;) hehe

    RyanJ–wow! I had no idea! hehe And what you said about fear is awesome. I’ll have to mull over that one a bit…I think fear has its place as an emotion, but I think its place is to show us where our weaknesses are. Gives us the chance to use God’s strength to overcome those weaknesses…no courage without fear. Not a concept I’ve thought a ton about…thanks for the awesome words, bro! Gives me some good thinking. :D

  10. I’m constantly playing with my rig during awkward pauses. I think a big part of it is that I’ve labeled myself as being the “guitarist” or the “worship leader”, so during those times when I’m not actually leading worship, I just feel so awkward. I know that I need to take those times to go minister to teens or my band-members, but I always end up fiddling around in D.

  11. Cool stuff… We just started debriefing with what I like to call 1:5… Yes, I know, another cheesy Bible Verse trying to be a name thingy. But really, it comes from Proverbs 1:5

    “A wise man will hear and increase in learning, And a man of understanding will acquire wise counsel,”

    It also comes from Dr. Dobson’s study that shows “it takes 4 positive comments to counteract 1 negative…”

    Therefore, I’ve asked a few of my Interns and team leaders to debrief with me every week. We ask the following…

    What was the main idea of the service?
    What were 5 things you enjoyed about the service?
    What was 1 thing you didn’t like?

    So far, I’m loving it! We’re getting some good feedback. Some of it’s hard to swallow, like “you need to play less”. Ouch!

    I have to say Karl, I do appreciate your humility in showing how un-humble you really are which… um… actually shows how humble you’re striving to be… which is a good thing… I think… in the most humble way of course. Love it!

  12. I read this blog religiously (no pun intended), and yet the first thing I’ve actually done via your influence, is the lemonade diet. odd…

  13. Thanks for the honesty Karl. It’s really refreshing to see a Christian pour their heart out instead of just acting like everything is okay. We Christians can be so fake, we are so afraid to let people know how we really feel. Sometimes we think it’s harder to say “I’m not coping” or “I can’t handle this anymore” then it is to deal with the problem by ourselves, then again it could just be me and my foolish pride.

    Here is a few things I need to be honest about.

    I doubt my abilities constantly
    I am extremely jealous of my sister’s music ability especially her ear for music
    I can’t tune by ear
    I constantly compare myself to other musicians making me doubt my abilities more
    I have many more things to post here but I’m too insecure with myself to post them.

  14. I understand the need to remain humble and also to keep the gear/tone stuff in it’s place. It has a place, just not at the top. It’s hard to explain to non-musicians why your apparent “obsession” with the technical details is not completely misguided. If you haven’t played in a group in front of people then you’re probably not going to understand how poor tone or a lousy monitor feed can throw you completely off. In fact, if all of that is dialed in, then you can take your mind off of it and do what you’re supposed to be doing.

    At the risk of hijacking the thread, I would like to hear from the community here about “what is an appropriate level of commitment” to a worship team. Do you discuss this in team meetings or other gatherings?

    For example, if you have ten people involved, how do you make sure at least 3 show up on a given Sunday?

    I’m seriously considering some “minimum requirements,” which if not adopted by our church leadership, could lead me to taking a sabbatical. I really don’t want it to sound like an ultimatum, but don’t know how else to proceed.

    Some of my thoughts on this may be more practical in a large church with dozens of worship team volunteers. For example, a requirement that to be on the team at all, you commit to being present or at least available 3 out of 4 Sundays per month ( exceptions for vacation/illness/emergencies ). Hobbies that take you away on Sundays on a regular basis would not be appropriate.

    The alternative, which many will prefer, is a loose arrangement, few rules, and you just go with the flow. I don’t think I could maintain the needed positive attitude with that approach.

  15. Our church worship pastor had this same problem. He enacted a schedule and broke all the volunteers into teams. That way people could still do things on the weekends just not on the days they are scheduled. He further enacted one day a week for practice and made it a hard fast rule that if you could not attend either find a replacement or you will be unable to play.

    This sounds like a heart issue. If people are taking worship seriously as their ministry than they need to commit. Christ said to die to ourselves and live for him. Doesn’t sound like they are living for Christ in their ministry? Just my opinion though.

  16. Ben–totally the same with me. I know what I should be using the time for, but I’m tired. hehe :) Nice to know we’re not alone!

    Eric–that is awesome! So humble, healthy, and the only way to get better. Sometimes it seems we (me, hehe) hate criticism. But the alternative is to keep doing things in a mediocre way for the rest of our lives. We do the same thing in staff meeting, where we critique…and ya. Some of it is not always how I wanted to start my morning. lol

    CC–thanks, bro. That means a lot!

    Mike–lol That’s the most important part! I don’t mention it, but that’s actually the secret formula. After you finish the lemonade diet, you find yourself yelling ‘Tubes! Minimalism! U2!’ over and over again, uncontrollably! hehehe But seriously, are you diggin’ the diet? :)

    Sam–awesome, brother. So cool to see your humility. :) And I had many things that I didn’t post, either. hehe

    Randy–ah, I gotcha. My apologies. I couldn’t figure out how your earlier comment related. So I just re-read it, and I get it now. :) As far as commitment on worship teams, that is a horribly tough issue. The only two things that have worked for me (generally), have been:

    1) Making sure serving on the team is fun. I want this to be the best part of my team members’ weeks, and something they don’t want to miss.

    2) Letting myself off the hook. There are times when you just plain can’t get people to serve on a given weekend. Hence, part of the reason I have so much gear and practice a ton. I have to know in my mind that the quality will not suffer if I have to do worship on my own. So, that includes having gear that can imitate having 2 or 3 people on the team, as well as practicing enough styles to where I can do the Jeff Buckley solo acoustic deal on my own, and have people not miss the band. Knowing that worship will still happen, even if it’s just me, and that the quality will not drop (it still might not be good, but at least it won’t drop…lol ;) ), has freed my stress level incredibly much.

    I don’t know how much that helps, but it is what has worked for me.

    Ben G–that’s a great concept as well. Explaining to people the level of commitment that is reasonable for such an awesome God. Unfortunately, at least in my humble experience, that approach does work…just very, very slowly. It’s probably the best process, but you have to be willing to put the real work into the people as they grow into owning this mindset.

  17. I’m going to have to watch all your youtube videos again to pick out the fast run! I’ve thought about something similar when playing with a different group of people at my new church once a month. I don’t really know anyone. There is a fine line between warming up and playing a fast run to show people what you can do. It’s kinda silly to think about these things. :) I remember playing Eruption during non-worship band practice in college (during the anti-solo 90′s) and my drummer laughed so hard that he fell off his stool. Dangerous stuff!

  18. lol That’s awesome!

    And ya…my ‘fast run’ is never anything to be proud of, hehe. But it’s there nonetheless. ;)

    And I’m not a huge Van Halen fan, but I must admit that there is something special about Eruption. :)

  19. Lol – Cool post, I like the other-guitarists-mistake-joy the most.
    Here’s one of my good (excruciatingly) ones:
    Sometimes I feel intimidated by cool students of mine (and I teach primary school)
    there I said it
    love this blog
    ben

  20. Sorry to essentially create two threads here, but I know Karl recognizes we’ve come to treat his blog like a forum ( except only he can create new topics :-) )

    Somehow I need to have one singer present each week. My Pastor and I rotate leading and we coordinate this out a month or two in advance. Obviously we really can’t have hobbies that take us away Sunday mornings and we plan on being in church just about always outside of vacations. I want the worship team members to move more in this direction, with one of them handling it exactly like we do.

    Otherwise how do you introduce new songs or plan anything that might require more than one voice or instrument? My Pastor is so busy with so many things that although he is not happy with spotty attendance or lack of punctuality, he seems to cope by never doing new songs and apparently just not expecting too much.

    Most weeks we have a reasonable complement on hand so this is going to sound like whining, but I just want it more predictable, especially as summer comes on and it gets really flaky. It may be time to set some guidelines and if it leads to a worship team of 3 people after others decide they won’t step up, so be it.

  21. Sometimes you have to seperate the wheat from the chaff. The biggest thing that helped me and my best friend co-lead the youth band was setting a practice time and day that is the same EVERY week. We also set the stipulation that if you can’t be at practice than you don’t play. Our practices are SUPER fun and playing is a blast as well. If people simply aren’t motivated or have a bad attitude that is when you take them aside and talk to them about their heart towards their MINISTRY of leading worship. Remember it’s not just something fun that we do to make ourselves feel better. We are using our talents to glorify the Lord and lead others in doing the same. I’ll be praying for you and your situation man :) Nothing is more frustrating than feeling like you are alone in your committment.

  22. It’s good to have as many people as possible participate on a praise team, since it gives that many people an opportunity to serve in the church, the music sounds more full, you learn things like teamwork, unity, compromise, all that good stuff…

    At the same time, team members need to recognize that this is a privilege and not a right, so if you have people who are dragging their feet nearly every week to do this, then now is simply not the time for them, I don’t think. For the most part, even with the hardships and difficulties there may be in worship leading, I love it, and I think most if not all of us are in the same boat.

    If you see potential in certain people to develop that same heart, or if you already have such people, build a team around them. If it means that it might be just you for a bit, then be faithful with that and God will work through that, whether it’s through growing those people who need the growth, or bringing in new people who hadn’t been considered.

    But I hear ya, man…it’s an age-old question, haha…

  23. yea the hardest part for me is that i’m a guitar player (specifically a lead player) but my church has 0 bassists so that’s what i get stuck with 95% of the time.

  24. I have a good safety net…a professional sound man that is in tune with the Holy Spirit. If I stray away for being humble, he will mute me. If I decide to press the clean boost, his finger is waiting to turn me off. If I get crazy with a riff in the wrong place, nobody will hear me. Man, I have some of the exact same thoughts and struggles. Thank you for the honesty. I pray that God meets you in your thoughts and dreams. I pray the same for myself.

    Mark

  25. Maybe taking myself “excruciatingly un-seriously” is what’s in order. :-) Or perhaps another look at how some of the prophets, apostles and martyrs dealt with adversity. How many went wah, wah, wah, whine, poor me ! Ouch, this is convicting.

    What was I complaining about again? Once again the value of this space becomes clear.

  26. Okay, here’s mine – I don’t really have any where else to post it online other than here!

    I sometimes feel smug when I see people cringe at the other guitarist, i used to be just as cringe worthy.

    I also turn the wrong tuning peg too often and end up untuning the guitar at the most inconvenient of times.

    Harmonies, I get carried away with them in rehearsals, get home, feel bad, ask for forgiveness and give the mic to the drummer every Sunday morning that i play my electric.

    I am British. Although I try not to sound American when singing “my God is mighty to save”. Pride, it gets to us all.

    Blank stares are not good. Sometimes its my fault.

    The higher a song goes without going out of my vocal range, the more likely it is to be chosen… this is bad.

    Acting humble is not being humble.

    If i judge person x for doing that I am in much bigger trouble.

    I keep telling myself that the treble on my speakers is too harsh even though it is completely tamable and I do tame it. But honestly that treble knob should be able to turn so much higher than that!

    The idea of a new speaker is pleasing me too much.

    The pedal train 2 looks cool. It’s currently in the post. This is also bad.

    I’ve read this through 3 times in the process of writing it. I don’t even know why.

    And finally. How my mind seems to work at times. “hmm, time to pray for Sundays worship *phone buzzes*, oo email… guitar gear, laptop *on*, micro pog only £125!, I don’t have £125… whats cheaper, nothing, oh. Facebook.”

    but wow, brilliant idea Karl :) thanks.
    ill have to try and be more honest with myself more often!

    James

  27. Okay, so some great thoughts here. For me to respond individually would kill the conversation, so here’s my contribution to it. There’s a balance between the one side of, Anyone Plays, and the side of, Hiring Professional Musicians. Somewhere in between there is quality, punctuality, and professionalism coupled with hearts, love, and training people up. :) It’s finding that balance…and I think it’s a lifelong journey, probably. At least, I hope so, because I haven’t found that balance yet! hehe

    James–those are amazing! Huge ‘good form’ to you, brother! Comment of the day. And the Mighty to Save/British one cracked me up bad!! haha

  28. I just have a recent struggle with balancing, in my mind, the difference between “how i’d do it if I could” and “how it should be done.”

    Because I’d like to think that some of my dreams and ideas are God-given … But then I have to remember that God made created us each different and places us sometimes as a hand of *His* church and sometimes as an eyelash or something.

    So … yeah, just been struggling with that lately. Being able to keep my opinions/visions to myself.

    But in doing so am I not contributing as I should? … See? Endless.

  29. I hear ya, bro. The balance between being humble and using your gifts. I know in my life, it’s always helped me to bounce the ideas off of a lot of other people. If 90% are not liking it, then I go re-think it. It’s helpful to seek out a couple really, dead-honest friends…honest about the bad and the good. It hurts most of the time, but it has helped me hone stuff a bit more. :)

  30. This has nothing to do with guitars, but here’s one of mine:

    After lifting weights, I stick the peg in a random heavy weight so no one comes in after me and thinks “woah, what a wimp!”

    So maybe you were just in the gym after me, and that’s why it was at 135 :)

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