Ray Heffernan is a musician, writer, teacher, multilingual songwriter with success in 5 different countries and a friend of mine from back in the days before children.
I shared the concept of hardcorejunkie with him and others and it hit a chord. So we got chatting about life and work and why so many of us give up on what’s in our hearts for something less.
To join the ranks of the ordinary and play the other guy’s game of 9 to 5 and sterile monotonous lifestyles with only the occasional relief.
Ray kindly agreed to put his thought to paper on the subject for the hardcorejunkie blog, so cheers Raymond, take it away…
Dear Prudence, won’t you come out to play?
I’ve met a million men who would have loved to.
Count them, ONE MILLION times I’ve been told, late at night by the guy at the end of a darkened bar.
When the last beer loosens the cage door to his dream and, just for a second, he lets it glow in his eye, and ah… how he would have loved it.
How he would have loved to.
Whatever it is, play the guitar, write a book, live abroad, speak another language, he would’ve LOVED to.
Given the chance.
Like the chance was taken from him. Like it’s out of his hands, and sure anyway, it’s too late now.
Maybe it’s because, as an adult, I’ve always lived in a foreign country that people ‘let go’ easier with me.
I’m the foreigner, I’m not a permanent fixture, and tonight, buying a beer for this travelling musician with the accent, he would’ve only LOVED to.
“Why don’t you?”, I ask, and then I watch him convince himself all over again of the great and noble tragedy he was forced to endure and meant that he couldn’t.
Because he did something else.
And it’s not just him, it’s all of us. We don’t do epic shit, because we do other shit.
Thing is, do it or not, it’s the same hour, the same day, the same year, the same lifetime of either doing what you would love to, or doing something else.
And you can. You fuckin CAN.
The very second you stop convincing yourself that you can’t. It’s there for you, in the time it takes to say “I would’ve love to, I would love to, I want to, I will”.
The wind is low, the birds will sing
That you are part of everything
Dear Prudence, won’t you open up your eyes?
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