For those who missed it Monday, check the previous post under this one for info on the new book. Right here, right now? A progress report on progress. I’m not one of those people who broadcast every little twinge and gripe all over the internet, or think for a moment that everybody in the known universe needs the opportunity to read what my every moment is like. I post on here to update & entertain, but sometimes one more than the other. This is a post for the folks I work for, with instruments on order. As with any employers, I owe you to keep you informed on how the work you hired me to do is coming along.
I’m feeling good, the leg is letting me know I’m maxed out and if I push harder it will begin revolting against me again. We can’t have that. It sucked. But I’m able to do long stretches in the shop and get a BUNCH done, so one by one my awesome patient clients are being made happy with their new basses trickling out – and that makes ME happy!
But I’m about 2/3rds speed and working 2/3rds as many hours. So this is the new normal, I’m good with that and I just ask you all for your continued patience. Honestly, this is just me being SURE to communicate with all of you, those of you who placed orders before my leg acted up and are now dealing with the time issue of the slowing down. The new orders now are quoted time frames based on all these factors – yours were not, because I was still invincible when I took your order. And you know, not one of you – none – has called to complain.
I truly work for the best folks around. Just like there are horror stories about the occasional luthier there are plenty in our community about the clients who want all the human interaction, special treatment, additional requests, care and handling, and one-on-one in the world… but any of our humanity shows in stuff coming up or health issues and now there’s a big problem. Like, so long as we only bend one way everything’s fine. Well, you deal with a person you get both. A professional person contains and maintains, but even then sometimes – sometimes your leg gets angry with you after years of abuse and you can’t walk for a bit and everything slooooows down for a while. There is not one client I have that has been that way toward me during this. Evidently, this is where all the cool kids hang out. Did I mention I love you?
Well OK, I had one blowhard email and ask me what the pickup was in the used Fusion he picked up and when I told him “It’s a special recipe with no simple answer, what that pickup starts as has little to do with an answer as to why that bass sounds like it does…” he told me my email was as useless as a chocolate tea kettle. Actually no, my time is worth something – perhaps not two shits but definitely at least one - so I’ll know better to keep it quite short with him in the future. Like, maybe two words.
But on the other side are you guys eight, nine months plus in line and… you’re all cool! I am blessed beyond measure. Believe me, nobody is more aware of how many build time estimates have come and gone over the past six months than me. You’re waiting for one; I’m conducting about 50. But I’m on it, it’s fun, and it’s all getting done.
There are those times you’re on top of it and other times it’s on top of you – for there to be any balance it does need the occasional tip one way or the other. It’s temporary. It fixes itself with a few adjustments and a bit of humanity and some real communication. In moments like this I think about two things – I think about how things would be different if the bigger team had formed, and I think about the fact that I could grow this thing to triple the output and quarter the wait time and my whole life would change. I ponder these at times… but I always come back to loving life the way it is; I’m a craftsman in the woods with a little help from my friends, that’s what feels right – even when it isn’t grooving and the tempo is off… the work never suffers, only the numbers.
And numbers are adjustable. I’m enjoying the 2/3 speed part, like when you savor each bite of food. That’s what life is supposed to be. It can’t always be that, but that’s the ideal – to savor. To be present. To ride the moment. To feel the tool in the hand, not just check off the task you do with it. I just wish I could snap my fingers and get you ALL your basses tomorrow… that’s my only concern.
But I’m good, and it’s going on in here. And you know where to call, and if I’m not on yours I’m working toward getting to what’s next on yours. You have 110% of me.
Willie Nelson with Asleep At The Wheel, Willie and The Wheel; Bonnie Prince Billy Beware.