Austin, a love song.

I’m a pretty odd guy. I don’t know if you can see that from the street, but I don’t really feel too much like a peg that fits in this hole world. I’m cool with it. Y’know, I figure I’m old enough to be comfy in my skin.

Austin is a place where that kinda thing is okay. We met some of the coolest people – many of them in cabs. That’s the great thing in a town full of artists, our waiter at the Old Pecan Cafe was half an actor and Denise Jaunsem drove us from the Driskill to the University. I sat at the Kismet Cafe checking out her wonderful paintings on a tiny phone screen.

Right around the corner was a street artist, and I’ll send you to my wife for the details. She’s got the pictures and the story.

We got to see and speak with Billy McLaughlin, who was one of those folks who was actually doing this making music thing when I was thinking about it in the beginning. He got me brave…and that was before he lost the use of his hand. Check out the link, it’s a pretty amazing story. I think he’s coming to the North Chicago Suburbs in Oct ober and I’m going to try to talk him into coming to St Charles, Naperville or Aurora next year if I can.

But back to the first paragraph. I’m odd. I’m displaced much of the time and when you feel that way – whether it’s true or not – you are. The things you believe you make true one way or another. I tend to think I’m out of place, so I am. Austin is a place for folks who feel like I do. Folks who feel like we do. I mean it. It’s that platonic rift that almost everyone must feel and have felt as far back as we can imagine. We are the other. We are trapped in our own stupid skins and we keep trying to connect through sex or argument or sharing of ourselves and we remain in our skin; self contained; autonomous and isolated.

This is getting long and pretty far away from me. I love Austin for allowing us to be these insular molecules , bouncing off each other, forming bonds, splitting in some violent way and ultimately colliding again. I love to see a city stand as tribute to that rugged individualism that transcends your haircut and examine the real cut of your cloth. We are going to always share our pain and our joy alone. Even loved well – it has to be that way. We have to never really understand another person as a sum of their experiences.  We have to be a person by definition of the idea of a person and as a precursor to becoming persons as a collective.

It’s the body as metaphor for this human condition. I love it and I love Austin for somehow lending this strength.

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