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Short story: Whenever you start something, you buy an ending. Keeping the cost down is to be present in your time along the way.


Longer story …


It was about a week into the pandemic lockdown when I was approached with a collaborative project. Omaha musicians-at-large Denver Dalley and Clark Baechle sent me a couple instrumental demos and asked if I would contribute vocals/lyrics. I listened and thought immediately of a melody line for a verse. I asked them to send me their demo multitrack so I could tweak on it.


I opened their session and got lost for a few days just chasing ideas. Eventually I had recorded so much extra material and altered their arrangement/chord progression to the point it sounded a lot more like a Jimmy Eat World song. With their blessing I showed the other guys in my band and it started its next life in the development process we take with OUR songs.


The song didn’t come together right away. It was a long slog of bursts and lulls. I think a lot of people in creative fields experienced this in 2020. We tried to work through the truly bizarre time without processing what things actually felt like. Those suppressed feelings are going to catch up one way or another. And they may materialize not in the form you shoved in the closet, but just … chaos. With no clear pointing signs to their root. I’m hesitant to characterize my experience as trauma but that is essentially what I am describing.


There’s so much uncertainty to any life-path, choice or not. And that uncertainty turns into something darker the longer you ignore the fact it’s there. It becomes a soul-dragging weight, but there’s a sick comfort of control by the fact you carry it. You don’t realize it but all of a sudden the weight is so heavy you are immobile.


The “Debt” you rack up is the time you spend avoiding doing the work to know yourself. You buy an ending every time you start something, and the cost is determined by how closely you pay attention to your personal condition.  You’re going to get real and take action to deal with what’s happening, or you are going to sink further into the expensive outcome you feel is “set”.

– Jim Adkins

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