Posts Tagged With: Hard Eights

Day 663: Hard Eights

Yesterday, when I was walking to work, one of my favorite tunes in the wide, wide, wide, wide, wide, wide, wide, wide world showed up in my earphones: “Hard Eights” by Lyle Mays (who, I think, plays “88s” like no other).

See!!!!!!!!! It is NOT going to be hard for me to incorporate 8’s into this blog post.  Already, I’ve used the word “wide” eight times, I’ve used “88s” as a slang term for the piano, AND I’ve used eight exclamation points in the beginning of this paragraph.

What IS going to be hard for me to do, unfortunately, is share Lyle Mays playing this amazing tune — which I’ve been loving for over 18 years. I’ve searched everywhere in the wide wide wide wide wide wide wide wide web, and I can NOT find a video of Lyle playing this incredibly hard and wonderful piece of music.

I did find less than eight YouTube videos of DIFF’RENT people performing “Hard Eights,” and it’s taken me about eight minutes, this morning, to decide which one to show you.

ade ishs Trio performance found here; other brave people playing this hard tune can be found here, here, here, and here.

I wonder if more than eight people will check out all those versions of “Hard Eights” on YouTube?  If you do, note that

  • Takayuki Sasahara & Reiko Sasahara do a nice job with “Hard Eights,” even though it can be hard to play something like that without an audience.*
  • the last YouTube video of that song is Out of the Norm, because it gives credit for “Hard Eights” away from Lyle, to the WRONG people. I find that hard, when people don’t get credit for their creativity.

While I was searching for “Hard Eights” as incomparably performed by Lyle Mays (a search I started over eight hours ago), I found this, instead:

According to that YouTube video description:

TEDxCaltech – Lyle Mays and Friends

Lyle Mays and friends explore music based on physics equations, Feynman’s speech patterns and more, using improvisation, algorithmic composition, live video mixing, and a custom designed linked laptop network.

At about 13:18 in that video, Lyle starts playing some other music very familiar to — and loved by —  me.

I shall now show you eight pictures I easily took, yesterday, inspired by “Hard Eights.”

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I wonder what the iPhone 8 is going to be like?  I wonder if it will actually be able to understand me when I’m friggin’ trying to call somebody by speaking aloud the approximately eight digits in a phone number??!!??!!

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I found this in my mailbox at work. It was a chocolate reward, from my supervisors, for exceeding productivity expectations for how many people I saw for therapy last month (almost the eighth month of the year, but not quite). I can’t help but notice that there are no eights in the number of people I saw during the month of September, at a large hospital-based primary care practice,  in individual therapy and in therapy groups. I thought I might make some sort of 8-times show-off-y comment about that unexpectedly large number (using, say, base 2 numbers) but ……… forget it.

I’m really pushing it, aren’t I, trying to get eights into this post?  Maybe I should just move on to the next photo:

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This is an inside look at the candy reward I got, which was in approximately eight pieces. Anybody want to guess how many minutes went by before I 8 this?

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This shows me copying some materials for my sold-out presentation about the Koplow Method for group therapy, coming up in less than 28 hours.  Hey! Notice all the 8’s in that photo!

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On my way to lunch, in the hospital cafeteria, I snapped this photo of some art on the wall.  I heard a familiar voice say, “That’s a beautiful one, isn’t it?”  It was the beautiful Louise, who showed me this photo of her orchid:

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I saw almost eight blossoms on that beautiful flower.

Okay!  I have to choose two more pictures, to make this post complete.IMG_1316

I made this, yesterday, for my presentation tomorrow. A similar sign hangs in every room where I do my therapy groups. Some people think that eight-letter word is spelled incorrectly. It’s not.

I’m not sure if I’ll use that sign tomorrow. If I need it, I’ll have it.

Last photo? Eight letters I hope I hear tomorrow (and which I would say if I met, in person, all the musicians in this blog post today):

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8,888,888 thanks to all who helped me create this post today (which I’m publishing at 9:48 without proofreading) AND to anybody who-ever-reads-this-post-at-any-time (including you, you, you, you, you, you, you, and you!).


* More than eight minutes after I published this post, I heard the ending of Takayuki Sasahara & Reiko Sasahara’s performance of “Hard Eights,” and discovered they WERE performing in front of an audience. Was it hard for me to admit my mistake here?  No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no. Am I glad I did? Eight times yes.

** On December 22, 2015, more than 2 years after I published this “Hard Eights” post, I discovered that Lyle Mays playing this amazing number had finally shown up on YouTube.  I am more than eight times happy to include that, here and now:

Categories: inspiration, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , | 24 Comments

Day 170: Kicking it to work

Two days ago, I wrote about a dream I had about dancing, which included my doing some very amazing kicks.

I’ve also written posts about letting go of self-consciousness this year, as I’ve been singing out loud — and even dancing a little —  while listening to music in public. Nothing too outrageous, mind you. But it’s been freeing to realize that other people don’t notice, so much, if I  vocalize or step out a little.

Yesterday morning was a particularly beautiful day. I had some extra time for my walk to work, so I took my detour, along the banks of a little river.

Some pret-ty danceable music kept playing in my headphones on the way.  I really wanted to get into it, dancing-wise, more exuberantly than I ever had before in public —  but I still felt a little self conscious about this.  Luckily, while “It Keeps You Running” by the Doobie Brothers was playing, the coast was pretty clear in front of me (everybody was facing away):

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And nobody was there, in back of me:

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So I had no compunction, at all, in doing some dance moves.

I really started to get into it, doing some side steps, some kicks,  and even a grapevine or two. I had memories of dancing in my basement to musicals, when I was a kid.

I passed some geese, but they didn’t seem to care.

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Geese to the right of me, geese to the left of me, all indifferent to my moves.

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Then, as Michael Franks’s bouncy tune “Eggplant” started playing in my headphones, I noticed a lot of human traffic ahead.

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Oh, no! I thought. I guess I’ll have to cut back on my kicking when I get close to that heavily trafficked bridge.

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However, by the time I crossed that bridge, nobody else was on it. Also, the view from the bridge was nice enough to distract anybody away from my antics:

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Lots of beautiful distraction, everywhere:

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And when I got to the other side, the surrounding population was sparse again, making it easy to kick it, without concern.

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I had so much fun walking/dancing to “Eggplant” as I continued along.

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While there were waves of people moving by, they were  always in the distance and not looking in my direction.  They were focused on getting to work (or wherever else they were heading).

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Then, when I reached this point in my walk …

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I realized that, in order to get to work on time, I had to keep moving  forwards — deliberately, consistently, and quickly. In other words, I had to stop sashaying and really start hoofing it. One of my favorite tunes of all time, “Hard Eights” by Lyle Mays, kicked in right then. Now, THAT’s a song that always energizes and propels me.

So, I flew to work, keeping pace with the music, and with some delight on my face.  On my way, there were lots of people on the sidewalk to weave around.

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Which I did, with a modicum of grace. (At least, no collisions.) I got to work in plenty of time, too.

Thanks for steppin’ along side with me today.

And, if you want to check out “Eggplant” (perhaps for a little personal kicking),  here it is:

Categories: personal growth | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

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