Everyone is given the same amount of hours in each day, yet the various ways people choose to spend them is fascinating.
For instance, if your workdays kept you busy from the afternoon until late at night with people constantly demanding things from you the whole time and as soon as you finished, you had to travel somewhere else for the next day’s work, I imagine you’d be pretty exhausted after a few days of this and ready to take a few days off to unwind, even if you love your job.
That’s why I was amazed to find out that when RS had three days off during a two-month concert tour, he left from his Sunday night concert in Charlotte, North Carolina to travel to Venice, Italy to spend a day and a half promoting “Ricki and the Flash” then turned right back around for a Thursday night show in Chicago. And this is at an age when many people his age are welcoming their retirement years. But I imagine that many people half his age aren’t even half as productive as he is.
(During interviews, when reporters inquire about his intense work schedule, he has attributed it to being a result of having ADHD and has said that he likes to keep busy because it helps ward off his depression.)
Next week is the Jewish New Year, a time that involves a great deal of introspection, as one reflects upon the past year and thinks about what changes they’d like to make in their lives in the upcoming year. Although it’s a joyous time, spent with family and friends and eating lots of good food, it’s also a somber time. So this is the frame of mind I’ve been in the past few days and pondering how one spends one’s precious time fits right in.
OK, but before I go off in a totally different direction, I will try to focus here, as it’s getting late. I just wanted to mention another way that RS is so inspiring. In his memoir, “Late, Late at Night,” he writes about his time in “the burbs” in Glendale, California in the late 1970s when his fourth attempt to make a record falls through and he decides to sculpt figures of aliens and tries to sell them at swap meets, contemplates becoming a priest and hangs out with chickens in his Glendale backyard. And his breakthrough song “Jessie’s Girl” came about when he had decided that if his musical career wouldn’t work out, maybe he’d become a stained glass artist (and then wrote “Jessie’s Girl” about a girl in the class).
And then, finally, when he became extremely successful, he realized that the success hadn’t made him happy and he walked away from it all in the late 1980s. In his book, he writes about all the highs and lows during his career and although it probably never occurred to him as he was going through all these challenges that someday he would share them with others and, as a result, it would help them get through their own challenging times, it’s fortunate he chose to be so honest. By sharing all these highs and lows, he provided hope to those who are on the low end, by showing that paths can shift direction at any moment.