Tuesday, August 3, 2010

I Just Want to Get Some Sleep...2

Technology is wonderful...when it works.

Did I say that already in this blog? Possibly...I say it at least once a day, because it's true. Over the past few weeks, I have fought computers at home, at work, and my cell phone. All of these things, as friend/music partner Joshua reminds me, are "tools." "Tools," he says (with the earnest attitude of the True Believer), "are to make our lives easier."

"Yeah, as long as they work," I snarl in response.

We both agree that there is a limit to the "probation period" of such techno-gizmos and that too many manufacturers rush their latest creation to market before it's truly tested (can anyone say VISTA?) or troubleshot. (Troubleshot? Is that a word? Songwriter's rule: It's a word if you need it to rhyme with something.)

I will resist griping about the computer that friend/music partner/and-did-i-mention-computer-guru Joshua has been grappling with. (Not one, but TWO failed hardware components...which means I can't even blame Windows this time.) But the cell phone...argh!!

BTW, you may wonder what this has to do with songwriting. It's a tools thing. Tools make our lives easier. Or they should, at any rate.

So, this Pantech Persuit (which my son is going to inherit quickly, because he picked it up, played with it for 30 seconds and Got It) must be charged every night. So, I leave it plugged in and turned on, sitting, screen side down on my bedside table.

Last night the muse nudged me. Just an idea, a phrase. She does that a lot, just a phrase, a teaser of what's to come.

Instead of fumbling for the pencil and paper, I slid open the keyboard on this little green phone-pod and typed myself a note. Hit save, hit the pillow.

This afternoon, I scrolled through my notes, and saw that one. I had completely forgotten about it until that moment. OH! YEAH! WHAT A HOOK FOR A SONG!

Technology IS wonderful when it works! And it worked! For some odd reason, the glow of the keyboard was enough light to enable me to type a few words. I could READ it the next day. Do you know how many scribbled middle-of-the-night ideas have been lost because I couldn't read them later? And - even better - I WENT BACK TO SLEEP!

So I felt a bit better about that little phone today. Instead of going back into the box and back to AT & T, it's going to my son (who loves it already) to support his Texting Habit. In the meantime, I'm heading back to AT & T for something a little "smarter."

Think about your songwriting tools. Do they make your life easier, or do you fight some of them?