Tuesday, May 8, 2012

All You Have to Do is Dream

Yesterday I was reading Life and Other Crises, a blog written by Kerri Sackville, whom I have known for a while online. Shortly after I "met" her, she published her first book, and has just recently had her second book published. (Unfortunately, neither are yet available here in the US.)

Her latest blog post speaks to the fact that one of her dreams had been to be interviewed by the media;
When I started writing, I used to fantasize about being interviewed in the media. It seemed like an incredibly glamorous thing to do. Sometimes I would actually interview myself at home, just chat to myself in my kitchen, ask myself questions whilst I was chopping up veggies or washing the dishes. I always asked myself really interesting questions.

Now that I've released two books, I have done quite a few interviews, and let me tell you - it is pretty glamorous.
That started me thinking about a number of things in my own life.

While it had never been an active desire of mine, I found myself the subject of many interviews during a period of time in March of 1977. You can read all about that here.

As a result of that incident, my picture was on the front page of all of New York City's newspapers, and in this city that means that a lot of people see it.  The next weekend I was downtown, shopping with my wife, and while I was waiting for her, a woman stopped me to ask if I was the one who spoke with the president, and when I informed here that I was indeed, she asked me to sign an autograph for her!! I was happy to accommodate her but it took me a moment to think of what to write as this was not something that I had expected nor was prepared for. While I was signing for her, I suppose others in the store saw what was happening, and started pulling out papers and lining up for their own autograph. When I looked up, there was a long line of people waiting to meet me. I can guarantee that no one had any idea who I was or why people were asking for my autograph, yet there they were! My wife, who soon spotted this queue, informed me later that she did indeed hear a number of people on the line ask who I was. The most common answer was, "I don't know." I wonder how disappointed they were when they found out.

Kerri's post was entitled When a Dream Really Does Come True and was about dreams of hers that have come true, along with some that haven't. I posted the following reply to her post, and with her permission relate what was in it here.

I could tell you about how my dream of having my writing actually be read reached its peak in the mid to late 1980's when I was being published here in the US and in the UK - and being read almost all over the world - you would be able to identify with that dream ... but ...
... the dream that even topped that had it's roots as far back as 1964! That harkens to a time when I first played in a pit orchestra in junior high school. I was the strange one who would go to a Broadway musical and watch the conductor in the pit as much as any actor onstage. (I still do!)
I started playing in the pit of a Community Theater group in the Upstate NY town in which I attended  college. Still, I imagined myself as the musical director/conductor. I would conduct while listening to show music in my car! (Yes, I got many strange looks!)
I got married and moved to my current home, where one day my wife and I attended a Community Theater production after which I commented that the piano/violin they called their orchestra was a poor substitute for a proper band, and found myself speaking with one of the group's officers after the show. I may have slightly ... errr ... exaggerated my experience as a musical director. (shhh - it's our secret, okay?)
Months later I got a call from the founder of the group asking if I would be interested in the position. I agreed, and for the next decade and more, realized my dream of conducting in a show pit. And to make it better, both of my children - excellent musicians in their own right - played with me for many of those years. (I did feel like a total fraud for a while - especially when we received the music for that first show and my daughter had a look and exclaimed, "I think you bit off more than we can chew!" We pulled it off famously though, I'll have you know!)
Since then I have musical directed/conducted many shows for many organizations (and played in a few as well), including my most recent gig at St. John's University!

As Kerri asked at the end of her blog post - So what about you? Have any dreams come true for you?


  1. The dreams coming true are usually what make the nightmares worthwhile ... xo

    1. Very true. They give you something to look forward to rather than dwelling on those nightmares.

  2. As I said to you, I LOVE your dream come true, especially because it involved risk, and extending yourself, and triumph when the outcome could have been very different!!!! xxx

    1. thanks Kerri, though some would tell you I am a bit headstrong and tend to lead with my heart and not always in partnership with my head. ;-) And as far as "putting yourself out there," although I haven't read it (yet) it seems as if you have done just that with your latest book.