Sunday, January 24, 2010

Is it an early sign of midlife crisis? Probably

I've picked up the guitar again. Because, apparently, I like being really angry. And that's what the guitar does to me: it makes me angry. It fills me with brain-quivering, muscle-tearing, teeth-breaking, eye-watering rage. Guitar make Chris mad.

As an instrument, the guitar is one of the oldest in history, isn't it? Wikipedia says there is evidence of guitars existing 3,000 years ago. And that's got to be true because Wikipedia said it. Wikipedia is never wrong. Except for when the entry for me (a) on the Welsh-language version described me as being from "St. Pauls."

Considering that the guitar has been around so long, I find it odd that punk music is really only about as old as I am (according to Wikipedia, it developed roughly just before or during 1976). Because the first thing that learning guitar guitar makes me want to do is bang the strings in anger and then smash it to little pieces. It makes me like Jeff Jarrett in some small way.

But still, I'm making another attempt at learning.

I had started learning in the summer, but then Rachel moved back to the States. And doing things that make you really, really, really angry is generally not an advisable activity immediately after your wife has left you. So, the guitar sat in its case through the autumn, through the whole of the last series of "Strictly Come Dancing", through Thanksgiving, through Christmas, through New Year's, through the writing of two rather long papers that I almost didn't write. But then, last week I decided to start again. This time with lower expectations.

There's a mantra in that: "Start again; this time with lower expectations." It has a sort of Jedi ring to it.

With a new semester starting Monday, and a new year and new decade still relatively young, I'm trying to get myself into this whole "start again" mentality. I've begun work on a new novel, and, as you can see (unless you're reading this via RSS or on Facebook) I've given the old blog a new look.

I'll be perfectly honest with you that my cynical side isn't buying all this "new" crap. The guitar-playing especially. One thing I've kind of picked up from being an author and hanging out with author types is that producers often don't make the best consumers. And the opposite is generally true, as well. So, I like listening to music. I could spend thousands of pounds purchasing music, and thousands of hours and calories dancing about like a fool to it. However, these things don't necessarily translate into being any good at making music. The negative part of me thinks this guitar thing will go no further than Craig Ferguson's attempts to learn Spanish (b).

But, I live in outrageous hope.

(a) Which I really did not make myself, as hard as that may be to believe.

(b) Craig Ferguson is hilarious, yo. I love his utterly, utterly random interview style. Case in point, his interview with Abbie Cornish.


Anonymous said...

chris cope you just moved up to #1 on my list by mentioning craig ferguson. you ROCK! loved you before, love you even more

Sarah Stevenson said...

The new look is very snazzy. Me like. And yes, Craig Ferguson is awesome. His role in the movie Saving Grace is classic.

Anonymous said...

Funny old world. I was thinking I hadn't seen Craig Fergason for ages. Used to like him a lot. I Googled him and low and behold found out he has his own show in the US. Some good stuff on Youtube.

He was and is very funny indeed


Professor Batty said...

Learn the E chord.

Thrash it until your fingers bleed.

Then move it up one fret.


Annie said...

We're going to put on a show for my mum and dad tomorrow night, and my dad is going to video it.

rock and ROLL

Annie said...

oh, and love the new look, v good well done

Anonymous said...

Put Craig Ferguson Yodels into Youtube