Monday, August 22, 2016

Social anxiety, book clubs and 10 interesting things about me.

One time I sang live on A Prairie Home Companion in front of thousands of people I could see and millions of radio-listeners I couldn't. I wasn't nervous a smidge. Give me a stage and a microphone, and it's a cocoon of safety and support. Last week I went to a book club with seventeen smart women, and I had to tell everyone my name and I about peed my pants with anxiety and fear.
Interesting fact not listed: I have more freckles than anyone.

It's typical social anxiety, and I can't really explain it. I don't know the number of audience at which I become comfortable again. But if I don't have the frame of a stage, then simply introducing myself is apparently terrifying these days.

Blame it on mental instability post-baby? I don't know, but all I had to do was say my name, my occupation and "one interesting fact" about myself. I was a mess. My friend had to whisper, "You play the musical saw," in my ear when it was obvious I couldn't think of anything to tell the group. After, of course, I thought of lots of interesting facts. I've had all kinds of interesting things happen to me.

And so, from the safety of my blog, I bring you: ten interesting facts about Brigid. At least I think they are interesting. Some of them sound really braggy. Or at least name-droppy. But I think they are still interesting?

  1. I learned how to play the musical saw from my college roommate whose brother Guy Forsyth is a famous Texas musician who also plays the saw really, really well.
  2. When I was 5 years old I was in a national television commercial for a GE microwave. (It's not on YouTube ... yet.)
  3. I can do a back flip off the 3-meter high dive.
  4. I started my first career as Andy Cohen's intern in 1998 at CBS, and my first task was to update his Rolodex. I had everyone's phone number.
  5. I haven't owned a car in five years.
  6. I can write in cursive backwards quickly and easily and have been able to do since I read a biography of Leonardo da Vinci when I was nine and learned about his 'mirror writing.'
  7. I'm ambidextrous.
  8. I've played saw and accordion and sung backing vocals for Elvis Costello three times and in two countries.
  9. I've had breakfast with Walter Cronkite.
  10. I had perfect attendance from Kindergarten all the way through 12th grade.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

The impossible-ness of work/life balance; vacuum cleaners; and adorable baby photos.

Still swimming over here, friends, even though I am in over my head. I wish I didn't want to work. I also have to work, of course, but even if I didn't, I wish I didn't want to. My job is so scattered -- the few lessons here, then more lessons there, then back to the original lessons. The booking gigs only to travel to the gigs. The rehearsals and the writing that doesn't get done because I can't seem to schedule my creativity like I used to be able to do. (Unless it's Snapchat filters.)

When I was in practice -- writing daily -- I could pick up a pen and write a song, whether or not inspiration had struck. My mind was sharp, and I could make it work for me.

Now, even when I get a babysitter, I need several hours to play catch up before I can even think about writing. I know from previous experience, and I am afraid to confront this again, that even when I eventually get that time, my craft will not be there for me.

Practice. I would love to practice. The piano, the guitar, writing, songwriting.

In the mean time, what is currently pestering me -- aside from why do I donate to everyone else's album crowdfunding campaigns, but I don't have my own -- is: I WANT A NEW VACUUM CLEANER.

Like, I want a fancy, amazing, make-my-rugs-look-new-again vacuum.

I feel like if I could just get my rugs clean, then I could start fresh, you know?

Anyone out there have a vacuum you love? Can you come over sometime and use it on my rug so that I can be sure I'll also fall in love with it and then purchase my own?

Back to babies. Here's a split-pic of the first Wee Boy (bottom) and the new Wee Boy (top). Aside from their coloring (dark hair and bronze versus light hair and fair), aren't they basically twinsies? I laugh because everyone says the new one looks just like me, and the first one looks just like his father.

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