Coming Around (Again)*

music notesRecently, someone posed this question on Facebook:  If you followed your childhood dreams, what would you be doing today?   It is the kind of post that catches my eye for a minute or so (leading me to see what others answered in the comments), then move on.  But it hangs around on the edges of my awareness until my own answer turns up out of my distant memories.   My oldest recollection of What do you want to be when you grow up? is … NUCLEAR PHYSICIST.  Chances are I was just trying to sound smart.  I ended up an electrical engineer.   A more interesting question is as an adult, what professions do I wish I pursued?   I have never been dissatisfied with being an engineer, but having such a left-brained profession has often given my right brain little to do except wonder what might have been.   In high school, several wonderful teachers taught me the love of writing, not just reports and term papers, but composition and fiction … and this combined with my love of reading … led me to wonder if I should have been a writer (more than a technical report writer and blogger with one published short story).  My Mom taught me to draw and paint, a habit I have continued sporadically throughout my life, and naturally, my right-brain has whispered, I bet you could sell this.   I love music and have dabbled with the guitar since high school and whenever I watch a guitarist, whether it be John Williams, Peter White or Carlos Santana, I imagine what it would be like to be able to do that.

Sometimes, as I wandered along my spiritual path, I have believed it reincarnation, which raises the interesting question of Who … or what … would you like to come back as?   Assuming my reincarnation wouldn’t be a demotion (sending me back as a squirrel or a snail), that is.  It is probably superficial to base your reincarnation goals on a YouTube video, but at a purely visceral level, I’d like to come back as this guy.

In case you are not a fan, he is Mark Knopfler, former lead singer of Dire Straits, and guitarist extraordinaire … and Telegraph Road is my favorite Dire Straits song.   I’d even accept his quirky vocal style to be able to play like that.  But before I sign on the reincarnation dotted line, there is another consideration.  Sometimes, when we are kidding around, I say to my wife, Muri, What do we want to come around as next time?   And to come around again with me as Mark Knopfler, she would have to make some changes, too (she’s not the music lover I am).  I’d be willing to choose someone a little more mellow, like Earl Klugh, who we’ve seen together.   And if that doesn’t work, maybe I’ll be Stephen King.   Or even John Grisham.  Truth is, I’m not all that sure I believe in reincarnation and if it’s true, I suspect I don’t get to choose my future life.   But it sure would be fun to be able to play a guitar like that.

*Title courtesy one of my favorite Carly Simon songs:

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