overcoming average(?)

because it’s something the world just needs less of

A Weird Moment In A Bar

with one comment

The other night, I had a gig in Palo Alto and my wife and son we’re traveling from further north in California back to where we live in Santa Cruz. Without going into a geography lesson, we decided it would be worth it for us to try and meet in San Jose for dinner if the timing worked out. It was a shorter drive for me to San Jose so that I ended up near our meeting place about an hour before she and Conrad would get there. Also near our meeting place was one of the best restaurants to get some of the best beer in the world. As you may have guessed, I knew what I was going to do for that hour.

I walked in, did my usual two second evaluation of the place, followed by my usual two seconds of insecurity that I’m clearly not cool enough to be there, then found a seat at the bar. It was after the dinner rush and maybe 45 minutes before they closed, so there were very few people around. I ordered a sample flight of some truly amazing beers and did the nerdy thing of checking in those beers on Untappd so as to feel less weird about drinking alone on a Sunday night. Maybe 20 minutes later, a couple walked in who are clearly friendly with the bartenders there and they all start talking. Beer culture being what it is, they immediately introduce themselves and we all start making small talk.

Here’s where it got weird. About two rounds of back and forth past “First time here?” and “What are you drinking?” they hit me with a question so probing and unexpected that I literally had no idea how to answer them. I was honestly taken aback and after a few seconds of silence had to admit that I had no idea how to answer them.

What they said to me was this: “So Matt, tell us a story!”

And I had nothing. Thankfully, someone else asked another question about what I was doing in San Jose that night and I was able to reply using words to indicate that I was, in fact, a person who knew to converse with other humans. That moment stuck with me though.

I don’t think I’m uninteresting or that I haven’t really lived or anything. I have a pretty great life with ups and downs and I’ve gotten to experience things that are honestly incredible. I’ve been to Europe, I’ve been to Central America, I’ve worked with orphans, I spent a decade playing and touring in a band, and lived with the joy that comes with raising my first born son with my amazing wife. I grew up without a father, lived in some pretty bad areas, had a few bad breakups, and had many many fights with my wife.

I don’t have an empty life devoid of stories, I’m just not prepared to tell them.

So as a way to start writing again, I want to tell some stories. For one, I never want to be unprepared for such a simple question again. Secondly, I honestly believe that telling our stories is the best way to connect quickly and deeply to each other. I think that’s what they were really after when they asked me that; a connection. Hopefully next time I’ll have one ready.


Written by matt

March 7, 2014 at 8:50 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

One Response

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  1. Hi there! I’m Heather and I was wondering if you would be able to answer a question about your blog! If you could email me at Lifesabanquet1(at)gmail(dot)com I would greatly appreciate it!


    March 26, 2014 at 11:49 am

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