Learn something new
December 12, 2007 § 1 Comment
I received one of my Christmas presents early this past weekend.
My wife never knows what to get for me, and even if I give her ideas, she wants to know exactly what type, what kind, etc., that I want, so it’s almost never a surprise when I get a gift from her. This was another example of a non-surprise gift, so she told me she was going to get it, and when she got home with it, I couldn’t wait to try it out.
She got me an acoustic guitar.
I was a band geek in high school, so I know a bit about music, but I almost failed my music theory class my senior year because of a bad case of senioritis. I also had my dad’s guitar for years (and never learned how to play it) before my sister took it because she wanted to learn how to play. At the time I was just too busy with learning other things – networking, Macs, grad school, whatever it was, I just didn’t have the inclination to learn to play it.
Over the past few months, though, I’ve been longing to learn something new. I saw a guitar at Wal Mart when I was shopping around one day and the thought hit me that it might be fun to learn. I really enjoy listening to music played on acoustic guitar, why not learn to play one. Then when my daughter and I went to pick out a pumpkin for Halloween, there was a kid there, picking away on his guitar. It had such a beautiful sound, and it made my daughter dance, right there in the middle of the pumpkins. That was it. I was going to learn to play. It had been too long since I’d learned something out of my comfort zone, and I was determined to do it.
I wanted to do something that didn’t have anything to do with computers. I spend my entire day on a computer, when I come home, I pop open the laptop. I take digital pictures and edit them on my laptop, then upload them to flickr. My entire life revolves around technology, and I wanted to get away from it.
So what was the first thing I did when I took out my new guitar? I tuned it using a website I’d found that had a tuner on it. Then I started learning chords from various websites. Yesterday, I printed out the chord progression for some songs that I’d found on another website, and started learning the songs in my garage, and recorded myself using Audacity on my laptop.
And so I’ve learned that, really, there is no escape. While I’m sure that the things I’ve found online are no match for lessons from a real person, at least they’re a good start.
Technology is just too much a part of my life to let go.
But it is helping me learn something new.