My Dad was on a campaign to drum the dream out of me. He was sure that two weeks on the job would make me buckle. He knew a friend of a friend who owned a restaurant, a BYO type of joint. Food was meh and so was the weekend crowd. When I arrived, guitar and amp in hand, he positioned me right by the door, handed me an extension chord that invited a lawsuit and shrugged as if to say “knock yourself out”. Even though I was having a hard time tuning above the roar of the crowd waiting to be seated (someone had managed to break not one but two bottles of wine) I kept at it. Vacillating between anxiety and dread, I dipped into my archive of soft rock hits and played. A few older folks caught my eye and nodded in approval. I drifted away. Thought about my share of the tip pool, about whether or not my car would start after tonight’s deluge and the gun show that my Dad would drag me to tomorrow morning at nine a.m. sharp. But nothing, not the indifferent crowd, nor the worn down tunes that are the perfect sound track for a root canal, could dim the crazy ass joy of being paid to play for a crowd. Here I am. I’m on my way.