Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Career Choice

What I'm Writing:  Gods Willing
What I'm Reading: I'm between books and haven't decided what I'm starting next
What I'm Knitting: A black and white scarf - cow related

I've decided I'm a bit jealous of my 15 year old son. Mark has a passion that is directing his career choice. I wish that at 15 I had any idea of what I'd want to do with my life.

Mark loves music. Not the kind of love where a kid might listen to his favorite band while playing X-Box (though he does do that). No, with Mark it's about the lyrics, and the cords, and the scales, and how his favorite bands formed, and how a certain guitar player has his guitar tuned.

A bit over a year ago when Mark wanted to spend his hard-earned money buying an electric guitar and amp, I whispered to Jon, "I hope he doesn't spend all this money and then only play for a week or two." I needn't have worried. I doubt there's been more than a handful of days since when he hasn't picked up his guitar - probably not even a handful. In that year he's gone from someone who loves music to someone who lives it. Pretty awesome, really.

He takes guitar lessons once a week and his skill is growing in leaps and bounds. It's impressive to see his fingers moving over the strings, mimicing other players' riffs or just playing the music in his head. He reads biographies of his favorite performers and bands, he reads Guitar World from cover-to-cover (and then watches the enclosed DVD to pick up new tips), he's constantly strumming and experimenting and trying.

This summer, after he'd worked a couple of weeks, he announced he wanted a new guitar. "But you've only had your guitar for a year. Why would you need another one."

"With guitar players, it's not so much need as want," said Joe at Dr. Guitar when I took Mark in to start his shopping.

Over a week's time, we were in Dr. Guitar for about eight hours as Joe patiently allowed Mark to try guitar after guitar. Finally, Mark bought an Epiphone Les Paul Gold Top. A beautiful instrument. He named it Jolene - after the Dolly Parton song, yes, but he loves the rendition of the song by Jack White of the White Stripes.

So, with all that, you might be sure that Mark wants to be a rocker - spend his life in a band, touring the country. Well, not quite. He wants to be a luthier. Yes, he wants to build guitars.

I think I need to make sure he gets some woodworking experience so he knows for sure that this is something he'd enjoy doing.

But, yeah, it's cool.


  1. Mark's playing IS amazing... and your musings about his passion makes me think he gets a lot of his creativity from his writer mama! :) ~Juliana P.S. Love the new vocabluary word, too: luthier!! I wonder if I'll ever get a chance to try that one out in conversation... LOL

  2. Love Mark's guitar playing. He's got talent and focus and that should lead to success - at least that's my wish for him and for you. Jackie (your friend from