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21 May 2009

Weekend resolution: I will share my talents, without self deprecation. [More:]We're going to a big camping festival this weekend, hanging out with a bunch of hippies and pagans and ravers in the middle of the woods, having a giant bonfire and just generally relaxing. I've made two resolutions, and I'm putting them here so that there will be at least a small measure of accountability. Ask me next week if I did as I promised.

1) I will share my wine, without self-deprecation.

I've made beer for 25 years or so, and wine for the past 5. I've shared it with a few people, but this weekend I'm sponsoring a wine tasting, inviting strangers to drink the stuff I've made. Taking 5 cases, sharing it with all comers. It's really hard for me to do this, even though I know this crowd will be very non-critical, at least vocally (see? I'm already starting with the doubt--"oh, they might not like it, but they won't say anything). These people are all going to love it, I mean, free wine, right? And it is good, too.

2) I will play my guitar (and ukulele) in front of strangers, without self-deprecation.

God, I hate even writing that. I'm not that good, you know, only know a few chords, not like I can do barre chords or anything, and only a little finger-picking…I'm trying really, really hard not to say those things out loud, at least. These people are all going to love it--a bunch of blissed-out hippies, all sharing their talents and vibes, sitting around a campfire, listening to some dude playing guitar? Of course they're going to love it.

It's all tied up in years of conditioning, some sort of Southern middle-class WASPy humility, don't brag, don't make a spectacle of yourself, all that mess. But, damnit, I'm going to do these things.

What do you resolve to do?
I'm going to chime in with a "you can do it!" and also let you know that I would cheerful enjoy your wine and would tell you so. I think it's awesome that you are letting people try it! Even if it's not a particular type of wine that that particular person likes, how incredibly cool that you made it, and are sharing it! It sounds like a great weekend! Have fun with it!
posted by Sil 21 May | 15:50
This weekend, I will be more flirtatious and try to dance a little bit (it may take liquid courage, but woo!)
posted by sperose 21 May | 15:52
I agree with Sil! I've got friends who make beer and mead, and if I don't like it then I'll give constructive criticism, but I never don't like it!

My resolution: This weekend, I will have fun and meet one new acquaintance at an event that would usually make me shy and awkward.

Your weekend sounds like fun! I want to go to a hippy/raver camp-out!
posted by muddgirl 21 May | 15:56
O, and this weekend, I will do my best to be gracious to my cousin and his wife, and try to show them all the good things in Portland. I will not let his negativity drag me down! It's one day, I will get the most out of it that I can!
posted by Sil 21 May | 15:57
This sounds like a great weekend, Mr. Moonpie, for you and especially for your companions!

I made a quiet little resolution similar to this not long ago: I was chatting with a couple of good friends and noticed that in maybe five minutes of conversation, I made three self-deprecating jokes, bam bam bam, right in a row. Some self-mockery is funny; constant self-mockery is a drag.

Also: I'm going to take a long walk this evening, despite my back spasms screaming at me to lie down with an icepack. There are only so many spring evenings, and I don't want to miss this one.
posted by Elsa 21 May | 15:59
constant self-mockery is a drag.

See, that's really helpful, because I know what it's like to be around someone like that, and I really don't want to be that person.

Thanks for the kind words. It's making me really happy to see what y'all are resolving to do, too!
posted by mrmoonpie 21 May | 16:03
You suck a lot less than a lot of people that blithely act as if they suck a lot less than you do. Trust me.
posted by Wolfdog 21 May | 16:08
Hah, just found the post from 2 years ago recounting what happened the last time I played in front of others. It was a huge set-back, but also a huge eye-opener--I don't hang out with most of those people anymore.
posted by mrmoonpie 21 May | 16:43
That looks like a ton o'fun, mrmoonpie, and I hope you enjoy every bit of it. In my experience, even though it feels as though it would be so arrogant to put your skills and talents forth, in reality it actually drops barriers between you and other people. Witholding them instead can create an awkward distance, as you stay so focused on yourself and 'am I good enough' than on the moment and the people around you. So let 'em rip!

Weekend resolution? Hm. I'll say to think positively and exhibit hopefulness. I've been pretty down in the dumps lately and feeling a bit lost about what happens next with my life, setting up negative expectations for the future. Also, I will keep working on caring for myself well, doing the things that feel good and are good for me, like exercise, get enough sleep, and have fun despite knowing I have a lot of work to do.

posted by Miko 21 May | 17:20
One thing I've noticed lately: I have a tendency to undervalue my own hands-on abilities.

This has become quite apparent as we gear up for the wedding. It's going to be very casual, very laidback, and almost entirely DIY. It's a little more daunting than my usual craft projects: usually, I can undertake a new hobby or project knowing that it's a longterm hobby, so I have months or years or decades ahead to learn it.

But in this case, I have to tackle each discrete project, check it off the list, and move on to the next thing. There's no time to learn the subtleties of the craft, to master the finer points.

And you know what? Everything so far looks fine; a lot of it looks great... amazingly great, so great I can't believe I thought about buying this stuff.

And I did it, with my hands. Wow.

The other day, we were talking about something we might buy, and I said "Or I could make them. That way, they'd be smaller, they'd be exactly how you want them, and they'd be a whole lot less expensive. And I do have the time."

His eyes got big and he said "Wuh? How do you do that?" And as I gave an offhand answer, I thought Hey. I know how to do a lot of cool stuff. I might be pretty cool.

So. I guess my biggest resolution is to honor that idea: I might be pretty cool.
posted by Elsa 21 May | 18:10
I recommend serving the wine before you play, at least before the ukelele. ; )

Tip toe through the tulips...

/not a positive thinker, but I do like s'mores
posted by Pips 21 May | 18:18
Great, amazingly great, all. I feared this was straying into GYOFB territory, but I really like how this turned out. We're taking off early in the morning, will be completely off-line, not even cell phones, until Monday, but I'll give an update when we get back.

And, seriously, if you live anywhere near the area, the event's not sold out, and won't be--come one, come all.
posted by mrmoonpie 21 May | 21:22
Why be self-deprecating when your friends can do that for you?

Seriously, I would freaking love to sit around a campfire and hear mrmoonpie strum the ukulele while I drank his wine. (He always had some mighty fine wine.)
posted by taz 22 May | 04:11
Sounds pretty awesome--I hope you have a great time.
posted by box 22 May | 06:56
Home made wine *and* ukelele strumming? Why aren't we best friends dammit??!
posted by gomichild 22 May | 07:13
Your weekend sounds great, mrmoonpie. I too would love to listen to the ukulele and drink free wine! I can't wait for the update and I'm glad you dropped those friends from last year.

Elsa, you must share pics of the wedding when it's through! I love to see tablescapes and stuff like that.
posted by LoriFLA 22 May | 08:21
Mine was to pash the hot mohawk boy i had a second date with - but of course the terrible cold I have has put paid to that.

now it's to rest up and recover asap.


date went well though - 6 hours or so!
posted by jonathanstrange 23 May | 07:25
Both goals achieved! Gave out three cases of wine to very appreciative folks. Sunday afternoon, there was some pretty heavy rain, but we had a picnic shelter on a wooden platform, and we were right in the center of things, so people would drop by, drink some wine, and hang out a bit. That wasn't the hard part, really--I mean, free wine, right? The afternoons were hot, so we bought extra ice and made sangria one day. That part of the plan worked out very well.

Now for the second goal. Saturday night, I played in front of an audience, of a sort--there was a very talkative self-decribed bi-polar schitzophrenic woman who I got tired of listening to, so I started playing mostly as a way to give me something to do. Not sure if that really counted.

But Sunday, while hanging out in the picnic shelter in the rain with several folks, I started playing the ukulele--and a woman danced! At that point, I had to keep playing, and loudly enough, for her. She's standing there doing hula moves, and I'm sitting there thinking "This is it! I'm sitting here achieving a goal!" Awesomeness.
posted by mrmoonpie 25 May | 13:45
I need to start looking out for these types of affairs. Is there a website that lists events like this around the country? Or even around the world?
posted by Ardiril 25 May | 14:14
Oh shoot, I didn't even congratulate you, mrmoonpie, on achieving your goals, and the was the main intent of my comment.
posted by Ardiril 25 May | 14:15
Here you go, Ardiril.
posted by mrmoonpie 25 May | 14:21
Great! Thanks!
posted by Ardiril 25 May | 14:43
Late followup--I've been doing really well with this lately, going on a lot of camping trips, playing and singing with others. Still takes a bit of a push, but I'm doing it. I have two--TWO--blisters from all the uke playing this past weekend.
posted by mrmoonpie 29 September | 16:04
I have a bad case of diarrhea || WWGHB?