Even to me now, Saturday’s represent choice possibilities. Twelve years of homework and early morning spelling tests and science projects due create what is sometimes overlooked in assessments of our commonality as an American people.
Wet Willie expounded on this theme in his eloquent tune, “Weekend”
Good people, weekend
Do just what you wanna do, weekend
When those workin’ days are through
Weekend, weekend, weekend
Weekend, weekend, weekend
Saturday night feelin’ just right
Makin’ new friends, lazy Sunday
Every Monday ends my weekend, yes it does
But you gotta make the best of life while you’re young
Listen people, weekend
Well, you get the picture Wet Willie was trying to paint.
Now everyone has their own recipe for the perfect Saturday, but to me, a leisurely lunch that hasn’t gotten caught in the crack between phone calls and writing and meetings–that is a wondrous thing.
Granted this lunch was a lot more leisurely for me than it probably was for my companion since he had a performance later in the evening, but he seemed to be relaxed and happy.
We talked of our own upcoming collaboration,a groundbreaking a cappella opera that will scoop up the magic of Shakespeare’s Midsummer Night’s Dream and breathe the breathe of song into the magnificent words. I couldn’t be more excited about this.
I read a quote once that said of musicals that song began when words alone would no longer suffice–and I liked that very much. In the same way, I am especially drawn to the way some people speak–their voices are very melodious and their speech has a cadence that makes their words easy to listen to–and often I learn that they are musicians.
At any rate, the conversation had little direction but just played aimlessly and happily in lots of directions. Most delightful however was our discussion of his “new life” .
He and his wife and child recently moved to a midwestern state quite different from Memphis, although, what place is NOT different from Memphis! She is chairing a department at a university, and he is now in the glorious position of being able to do what he is.
Most of us do jobs that are not who we are. For example, my friend has worked as an arts administrator all of his life–but he IS a composer. My boss works as a talented businessman, but he is an arranger and a musician.
Don’t ask me what I am. Half the time I can’t even figure out what I do.
When being and doing come together–that’s happiness, I think.
One of his own friends is Marcus Hummon, the composer of “God Bless the Broken Road”, a song that our a cappella group performs. The idea of the lyrics is that our lives follow a maze that in the end will amaze us with a surprising closure and completeness that comes as a result of what at the time may have seemed like failures or dead-end experiences.
At this point, and by the time we become tweeniors, it is a marvelous thing to find yourself in a position to pursue what you love.
So I am thrilled for my friend, who is enjoying the “weekend” of his life, doing, as Wet Willie says, “what he wants to do” and making the most of his life while he is young enough to do it.