“Monday 5 Things”™…..Of Gretsch and Carnegie…..

Img 3003Photo: D. Paul Graham, That Great Gretsch Sound Museum, circa 2022

“Monday 5 Things”™…..Of Gretsch and Carnegie….. 

I arrived early for a fashion shoot at Plant Riverside’s District Live building this past week. As I entered the building, two very rare Gretsch drum kits (safely encased in a plexiglass room which sadly prohibited me from practicing paradiddles) stopped me in my tracks. My apologies to Fred and Dinah for the nose-prints I left behind as I pressed said schnozzle against the glass. ‘That Great Gretsch Sound Museum’ in Savannah is a must see for any music aficionado. Over 135 years of Gretsch guitars (and drums) are on display at the District Live venue.

As I wandered around looking at guitars played by some of the worlds most accomplished and famous musicians, the old joke of “How do you get to Carnegie Hall?” came to mind. Whether you attribute the joke to comedian Jack Benny, pianist Arthur Rubenstein, or violinist Jascha Heifetz, the punch line is always the same; “practice, practice, practice”. Contemplating the countless hours of practice that each instrument must have been subjected to, I found myself wondering what areas of my life could use some practice, beside paradiddles. This morning’s M5T postulates on the ponderance of practice.

1. Practice being nice.

It’s remarkable what a smile, a thank you, an opened door, a generous gesture, or a random act of kindness will do for someone’s day, but also for your general state of mind. Let someone know you appreciate them, love them, care about them. Be a positive example when negative people are around you.

2. Practice to always find a solution.

Don’t wallow in pity parties when things don’t go to your plan or expected timeline. Practice planning, to think ahead, to think proactively, and to be the solution not a contribution to a problem. Determine the root or core cause of the problem. Think of multiple solutions. Practice the discipline of being the calm one in the room when everyone around you is seemingly losing their sh.. um, I mean when everyone else is seemingly frantic. Be a resource for others. Seek solutions that benefit as many people as possible.

3. Practice respect.

For yourself. For others. Treat others the same no matter their position in life, their race, religion, or gender. Practice servant leadership. Genuinely appreciate those that serve you. Practice using your ratio of ears to mouth. Ask more questions than others in the room. Keep your word and promises to others.

4. Practice getting out of the way – of yourself.

Procrastination, fear, self-doubt, and daydreaming take away from your goals. Practice doing things now, taking risks, believing in yourself even when others don’t, and taking steps every day, no matter how small, toward your dreams and goals. Practice always considering the consequences of choices. Make decisions that are based on doing what is right.

5. Practice humility, faith, and investing in others.

Almost always, your actions will speak louder than your words. Practice putting your faith and beliefs into action. Challenge your faith so you know what you really stand for. Invest in the lives of others. You’ll never know just how much an investment of your time will have on someone else’s life. The smallest of things may impact someone in more ways that you realize and matter to them years to come. Practice being deliberate in the making of what your legacy will be.

Here’s to a week of practice, practice, practice to get to whatever and wherever your Carnegie Hall may be.

© 2022 D. Paul Graham, all rights reserved.

For over 10 years, D. Paul Graham has published “Monday 5 Things” ™, also known to readers as M5T ™.  Each Monday, Paul shares his observations, thoughts and passions on people, life, and culture.

You can find M5T each Monday here on www.southmag.com and by friending D. Paul Graham on Facebook. Paul is also a contributing photographer to South Magazine. His photographic work can be found on Instagram @dpgraham and atwww.imageGRAHAM.com . Your feedback is always welcome. Email Paul at dpg@imagegraham.com