Last Saturday night, in the desert, under the stars, with 40,000 young people, and a handful of us old dudes. Lots of funny cigarette smoke too. Ok, so its like 10:45 PM, and its way past my middle-aged bedtime. But there is more to come, and I have to rally.
What a day. And then, at the end of this long day, the Perfect Mellow. Jack Johnson.
Jack was a professional surfer until an accident at the Pipeline in which his front teeth were knocked out and he received more than 150 stitches. Ouch, man! Although that is when most people believe he changed from a surfer to an artist, in a recent Rolling Stone cover story (March 6, 2008) he stated that it actually happened a week before in the finals of the trials of the Pipeline Masters on Oahu. At the age of 17 he became the youngest competitor to ever reach the finals. Jack was eventually disqualified after failing to catch three waves. Jack realized that the competitiveness was too much for him, "guys were ready to kill each other to catch the next wave," Johnson remembers. The accident allowed time for Jack to start on his new passions, the guitar and making music. He stated about the accident, "I like to joke that I hit my head so hard that that's why I'm so mellow, but I think it did mellow me out." While he was recovering in bed, he spent his time writing songs and playing guitar.
Guys killing each other to catch the next wave. Sounds familiar, doesn't it? Like life in the real world, the world of commerce that I live in. Ruthless competition. But strangely, I try to march to the beat of a different drummer, a cadence that is harder to hear, but easier on the soul. I think Jack gets that too.
Jack has it right, in his song "Better Together", he figures out one of the best blessings of life, relationships.
And so, this song goes out to all the dear people in our lives. For Pastor Jill. To Pastor Mark and Linda. To Tod and Beth. The Kamms. Jeff and Sparky, Jamie and Polly. To Julie in Cincinnati. To the Reverend KC and family in the desert. To John and Shelley. If you aren't mentioned here, you know its only cause my old head is foggy right now. To all those good, dear, long time friends. We love you more than words, or this song can convey.
It really is always Better When We're Together.
Love is the answer
At least for most of the questions in my heart ,
Like why are we here? And where do we go?
And how come it's so hard?
It's not always easy,
And sometimes life can be deceiving,
I'll tell you one thing, its always
better when we're together
MMM, it's always better when we're together
Yeah, we'll look at the stars when we're together
Well, it's always better when we're together