Day 634: How lame is that?

Last night, I facilitated a therapy group where people focused on the cognitive distortion of labeling (a/k/a name-calling):

Labeling or Name-calling.
We generate negative global judgments based on little evidence. Instead of accepting errors as inevitable, we attach an unhealthy label to ourselves or others. For example, you make a mistake and call yourself a “loser,” a “failure”, or an “idiot.” Labels are not only self-defeating, they are irrational, simplistic, and untrue. Human beings are complex and fallible, and in truth cannot be reduced to a label. Consider this: we all breathe, but would it make sense to refer to ourselves as “Breathers”?

The group did some great work letting go of negative, unhelpful labels.

I was so inspired by the group that, when I got home, I decided to let go my own labeling and name-calling, took a deep breath, and created another video of me singing.

This time,  I really went all out, indulging a long-standing fantasy:

Singing along to a favorite Pat Metheny tune.

Here’s that video, posted on YouTube:

Now, some people (including me, at other times) might call that video lame. Why? Because:

  • It’s REALLY long. That song goes on for over eight minutes.
  • The sound quality sucks. I mean, I was playing Pat Metheny’s Third Wind on my laptop’s speakers and recording the video with my phone. Granted, I did record it in the one room in our place with better acoustics, but — for people with acute hearing and a well-honed critical sense of music — it might be painful.
  • It’s recorded in the bathroom (also labeled the water closet, the loo, and many other names, in other countries). I mean, how lame is THAT?
  • The visuals are very clichéd. I mean … ANOTHER CAT VIDEO??!!! Aren’t there enough of THOSE posted on YouTube?
  • I did only one practice run-through, singing along to Armando Marcal‘s wonderful vocalizations for that fabulous, multiple time-changing tune and — believe me — I can hear how much better it could have been.
  • My hand-held camera/phone-work might make you nauseous . As a matter of fact, after I posted that on YouTube, I got this message: “We detected your video may be shaky. Would you like us to stabilize it?” Even YouTube, which probably gets a lot of lame videos, labeled MY video “shaky!”

Anyway, what other kinds of visuals and/or sounds can I offer you today?

Here are some photos I snapped recently, which might fit today’s topic, too.

IMG_9614 IMG_9625

IMG_9618  IMG_9622 IMG_9621

How lame are those things I saw in a pet store?

IMG_9636 IMG_9552

And how lame is it that the Red Sox went from winning the World Series last year to last place?

Also, here’s a version of Third Wind from YouTube  that is the opposite of lame.

What do you think about the highs and lows here today?

To end this lame and/or not-lame post, I’m going to quote the last two lines of Eric Wilbur’s Sports Blog on (which I’ve now linked to, twice, in this post) (and how lame is that?):

This time, though, it’s different.

This time, we’re still having fun.

Thanks to the people at my therapy group last night; to Pat Metheny, Armando Marcal, Pedro Aznar, and all the other amazing musicians performing on Third Wind; to Oscar the cat; to animals doing their best at pet stores; to the Red Sox; to Eric Wilbur; and to you — of course! — for letting go of any unhelpful labeling and self-judgment, today.

Categories: inspiration, personal growth | Tags: , , , , , | 29 Comments

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29 thoughts on “Day 634: How lame is that?

  1. You fascinate me! Thanks for the wisdom and the VOICE!

  2. Even the word lame is, well, lame. 🙂
    Thanks for putting your self on the line to show the highs and lows of labeling and judging.
    It’s one thing to see into someone’s self- judgement and fears, and quite something more to see a video of them in their bathroom!
    Oh, and being labeled by a machine, that’s just perfect.
    Thanks for the thoughtful post, and inspiration to notice those labeling words a little more.
    Oh, and Kudos to Oscar.

  3. You seemed to hit the right notes at the right time, which is the opposite of lame on something like this. Thinking of singing on key, I saw Pat Metheny live in the ’80s. Someone in the band had a birthday so they sang “Happy Birthday”. Pat was very off key. It really surprised me that an instrumentalist of his caliber had troubles singing such a simple tune. Getting back to videos, I’ll admit I only made it through a couple of minutes of your version, but i did listen to the whole thing in the “real” version.

    • Ooops, I see I forgot to say that Pat’s singing ability in no way diminished my appreciation for him as a musician – I didn’t judge him based on that one song.

    • I appreciate everything that you wrote here, especially that interesting news about Pat!

  4. The only critic that counts is yourself, Ann, and I know that you know that better than anybody I know.

    Shaky video hand, who cares. Growing confidence in voice, how fantastic! You are the anti- Red Sox this year, climbing to the top.

    I’m an Oscar-and-Ann fan for this Pat Metheny piece.

    (Let’s Go Mets, too, for a much-improved season, since you brought up baseball.)

  5. Stay happy! That’s a great label.

  6. What cute little hamsters! And I’m so proud of you for sharing another vocal video! Loved the pictures and videos despite all of the negative language!

  7. So…. I loved listening to your vocalizations as I read your post — you made me smile and laugh and shake my head in recognition of your courage, wonder and awesome spirit!

    Yup. Something to be proud of — and the label I’d give is not ‘shaky’ but definitely…. wonderful!

    • Well, Louise, I believe the labels we give to others can also be redirected to ourselves. So thanks for being so wonderful, lovely, courageous, awesome, and joyful, too.

  8. Say hi to Derek Jeter for me this weekend.

    • How did you know, Jeff? He’s in the on-deck circle, and will appear, in a way, in tomorrow’s post.

      • I wish I could see. No Yanks-Sox on TV here in VA. But I’m still all teary-eyed about last night’s game. That guy has meant a lot to the boy in me who still gets a thrill playing shortstop on my company softball team six months a year. Can’t wait to hear your take on #2.

      • Thanks for the touching comment, Jeff. My take on #2 isn’t much, but he’s doing a hell of an amazing job finishing his story.

  9. Why didn’t you ever show us a shot of you, Ann? I watched the entire thing, hoping you’d slip up, but you never did!!! Judy

    • I almost slipped up, Judy! Do you think that’s lame, that I don’t show myself? It’s a tradition I established when I started, and it’s taken on a life of its own, I suppose. I’m happy to see your smiling face here.

  10. Pingback: Day 635: Moving | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

  11. Too many times, a negative label leaps to mind when I think of something I have said or done. You’re right, Ann, that is a lame approach. I have to back up, regroup, and focus on the positive … so that label is not the first thing people think of when they think of me. It’s tough to rewrite your script, but Nora Ephron famously said “Above all, be the heroine in your life. Not the victim.” 😉

    Thank you for reminding us to think positive and to drop lame thoughts that only tear us down.

    • Thank you, Judy, for the gifts of this comment, including the Nora Ephron quote. I have said similar things to people. Letting go of self-judgment helps!

  12. You are a braver (wo)man than I am. I struggle to listen to my voice speaking in a recording.

    • Every time I listen to this, I struggle a little, believe me, Hilary! And my guess is that you are probably pretty brave, yourself.

  13. Wow! You really made my day! I am thrilled to have attended the Ann Koplow and Cat Concert in the Loo! This is one of the best posts ever!

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