Well, I've scooped mud from the bottom of barges, managed real estate offices, mopped floors and picked watermelons. None of those activities ever defined who I am. Thank goodness. Sometimes I'm proud of being a rock'n'roll musician. Sometimes, not so much.
I don't think I could have made it this long if I thought of myself as an architect or a dentist, a Republican or a Catholic. Oh, I'm jealous from time to time. It must be comfortable to have a self image that all makes sense.
I'm not a musician. I play a few things just well enough so that I can communicate with musicians who help me tell my stories. Nobody ever called me a singer. The only reason that I have the nerve to refer to myself as a writer is that I have to say something every now and then. When the insurance man asked my occupation on the phone the other day I told him that I am a writer. Felt just a little bit sheepish immediately. Well, I write.
I've never understood the concept of competition. Oh, I get it in evolutionary terms. The weak ones lose. The peaceful tribes get pushed to Patagonia. They freeze. They starve. I've just always considered that competition is for high jumping, not art.
It has taken me a good, long time to unravel the mystery of just who I am. Patagonia, here I come!