Chasing the Beast

Coming to Nashville and making it big in the music industry, as we all know, is “chasing the beast.”  The few who do finally catch the illusive demon often wish they had not, the tiger by the tail scenario.  And therein lies the crux of this article.

We all have chased beasts of all sorts.  The eight week old, $1,000, champion-bloodline, birddog pup running straight for the asphalt is literally a catch-by-the-tail, chasing a little beast nightmare.  When caught, the hyper, wiggling, untrained, sharptoothed critter, hellbent on breaking free, leaves the captor questioning whether upland bird hunting is actually worth all the trouble.  The short answer is yes.  A highly trained, pointing, canine companion and his master define the true essence of bonding.

Catching a potential, lifelong, human mate/spouse is significantly more challenging.  Physiologically, humans don’t have tails.  So, the odds of catching someone by the “tail” are slim to none.  People, therefore, must use psychological tactics to woo a potential mate:  begging, bragging, manipulation, emotional outbursts, jealous tantrums and many other exceedingly affectionate efforts.  Chasing and capturing the beast, however, potentially can become a worst case scenario, as my dear wife attests.

Chasing the money beast manifests two opposing outcomes, neither of which prove positive.  The wealthy workaholic lavishes earthly treasure on his family but never has time for his wife or children.  Contrarily, the blue collar dad struggles to make ends meet.  He can spend quality time with his family, but cannot afford the extended family activities so many Americans cherish.  Still better than the wealthy workaholic, though.

The “fountain of youth” sure is an alluring beast.  The creams, lotions, makeup, augmentations, drugs and schemes to make us look and feel younger sure do sidetrack most of us from reality.  Unfortunately, diet and exercise still are the magic bullets for staying as young as possible.  Lots of situps and no milkshakes!  Yeah, I know, this article is really getting negative and annoying.  I’m writing it and it is even getting on my nerves.  What ever happened to aging gracefully growing wiser?  Anyway, I don’t fall for all those stay-young gimmicks.  Forget the toupee, dyes and hair transplants.  I am going to just be me and join COAA (Comb Over Association of America).  “Keep it real, keep it natural.”

Cool, gifted people don’t have a beast they are chasing.  Intrinsically, they are satisfied sharing their gift with the rest of us without compensation, but will take pay if offered.  Don’t kid yourself about that.  And if they make it big, great!  These are the best folks.  They appreciate what’s on the inside more than the temporary, earthly gain.  Still doing what they love into their golden years.  Not a-chase-the-beast burnout at 40.

I’m awesome at nothing.  Just good ole, all around mediocre.  No great gift to offer the world.  No big, money-making beasts to chase.  But way down deep inside of my illogical psyche, I wonder if I could make it big chasing the beast of non-awesomeness.

Sorry, gotta go.  A tiger with an extraordinarily long tail just ran through the back yard.

Shane Newbold

About Shane Newbold

Father to four and best friend to Becky Jane for 26 years, Shane Newbold lives life to the fullest birdwatching, fishing, boating and enjoying his family.

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