Ego Distancing

I spent last week in Cozumel, Mexico, gathering new diving certifications, engaging in coral reef cleanup, and gaining some much-needed spiritual and philosophical insight. I was also almost completely off the grid, and had very little knowledge of what was unfolding above.

Immediately upon returning to the States, I was asked to self-quarantine, given my recent travel and potential exposure to the rapidly spreading virus. I obviously had heard some rumblings previous to my departure, but nothing prepared me for the eerily quiet airports and planes, the thermal scanners to detect fever in security lines, or the hundreds of passengers in masks.

Trying to stock groceries for two weeks of isolation was a window into impending doom - many of you are all too familiar with this scene by now, but when I left Mexico, there was still plenty of rice and toilet paper on their shelves. Even if I were able to teach or perform, as soon as I regained cell service I learned that all of my lessons and gigs had been canceled for a minimum of three weeks, maybe even several months. To add just a little pathos into the equation, my mother fell off her horse while I was gone, and is currently bedridden in one of the facilities where the virus is sweeping through her age group; and my daughter's pediatrician recommended I stay clear.

I know there are a great many people out there suffering, many of them much worse than me, and my heart goes out - if there were anything I could do to help, I would; and maybe I'll be able to figure something out soon. But in the very short term, I have lost literally all of my income, and am almost completely isolated from my support structure. I try not to ask for much, truly and honestly - I have never crowd-sourced, I don't spam my list-serves, and I barely even maintain a social presence - but right now I could really use your help.

I have set up a Zoom account to try and keep students engaged online, and I welcome anyone else interested in keeping themselves or their kids productively occupied during all these extended closures (I'm cutting some major deals). Additionally, Bandcamp has pledged to waive all their fees tomorrow (Fri, March 20), funneling all sales directly to artists - nearly all of my music is name your own price, and every little bit helps. And if you were ever looking for someone to write some music for your short film, commercial, or sweetheart's birthday, I've got plenty of time and inspiration.

I also encourage you to please support any other small to mid-level artists and musicians, and the self-employed you may know - we're all taking a major hit, and are unfortunately not included in those rising unemployment numbers. I know it's difficult for everyone, but we are truly all in this together, and I promise any assistance we receive will be repaid tenfold when we are able to get back on our feet. Remember that time you screamed "Freebird!" in the back of the club? Next time the band might even play it.

Above all, try to spread a little love. We've been primed for panic for a while now, and I hate to think that this might be the thing that takes us over the edge - let's show them we're better than that. Be safe, be well, and take care of each other.

"You are not a drop in the ocean, you are the entire ocean in a drop" - Rumi