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  • Writer's pictureBrian Martin

All In

Updated: Jan 17, 2020

Jan 16, 2020:

I was up at 4:30 in the morning twice this week in order to go to the gym for 5am (opening time). What the hell is wrong with me? I think that’s a reasonable question to ask. I’m not on any tight timeline. It’s not like I have to fit this in before work or some other commitment. It’s freakin’ minus eight degrees outside, there’s snow and ice on the ground and I’m gleefully (yeah right) bounding off to the club as though somehow an early morning workout is going to make a whirlwind of difference in my life over any other time of the day. Well, maybe it’ll be less busy? No, apparently not.

You see though, this is my modus operandi. When I decide to take something on, I’m usually all in. I’ve been like this for most all of my life. From competitive swimming to contending for a spot on the 1988 Canadian Olympic Tae Kwon Do Team (which I may discuss sometime later), to becoming a top pitcher in mixed orthodox fast pitch. Imagine, if you will, a grown man hurling a softball (figure 8 style) much like a frisbee, against a brick partition forty-three feet away for several hours a week just to try and get game ready. I mean, who does that? Evidently, I do. I must have been getting paid, right?Aaah, no.

The strange thing is that I’ve been reading Keith Richards book Life and it’s been raising serious doubts in my own mind about whether or not I truly understand what being “all in” really means? Sure, I’m back to doing the things that I was doing prior to the Christmas break, you know, gym, guitar, acting class, reading and writing, submitting for roles (I’m looking at agents as well), but this “glimmer twin” (he and Mick Jagger were nicknamed the “glimmer twins” because of their successful song writing partnership) has taken the term all in to an entirely different level all together.

Every moment of his life (including before the fame) was all about playing guitar. The living, breathing, eating, drinking, drugging, sleeping (though he claims he could go for days without sleep while on heroin), groupies (couldn’t go without that though), writing and recording original material (sometimes, up to two songs a day), getting arrested and charged numerous times, being evicted from entire countries, and even going cold turkey off of the drugs (which he did a few times but then realized that the pain of withdrawal wasn’t worth it) always revolved around playing guitar. He claims to have been comatose through at least half of the shit in his life stating that it was probably better not to remember it anyways. Should I be following his example?

Probably not. Instead, I’ll be following someone else. Yeah, that’s this week’s acting challenge. Observe someone for a minimum of one hour, adopt some of their characteristics and emulate them. Just like an alien descending onto the planet and assuming someone else’s identity to avoid detection. Or maybe, I’m a private detective like Jim Rockford (okay, I’m dating myself), but there I am on the job at the coffee shop trying to get a lead on some case. Don’t get exposed though, because that could get awkward.

You would think that being retired would somehow suggest that I should maybe relax a little bit more and smell the coffee as it were. Don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing like the enticing aroma of freshly ground Kona beans brewing in a waiting pot to put me in a proper mind set, but I don’t come to this shop for the coffee. Quite frankly, I find the java here to be a little too bitter for my liking. I come here instead, for the jade citrus mint tea, but also to write (along with half a dozen others), observe people and sure, to relax a little.

Sometimes, that’s hard to do though. I mean, how many times have I gotten into a two person line up and yet it’s taken what seems like ten minutes to get some service. Meanwhile, any good seat that I might have espied for optimal viewing and writing gets taken by someone else. They’re holding tables for the people that joined the lineup that’s forming behind me. I think they’re the smart ones. Maybe, I’ll go all in with them.

Until next time.

P.S. If you like what you’re reading go ahead and click the like button, and if you’re on FB why not share. I would appreciate it and you never know, you might win a prize (not), but it could be inspirational to me. Cheers.

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