When you have a sibling who is way older than you, you are forced to live with the habits and hobbies he or she is already neck deep in. In the process, you pick some too. Why do you think I became a fan of Michael Jackson in the first place? Or loved the power serves of Boom Boom Becker?
Those were the side effects of having an elder brother who junked on hard rock. No kidding. When I used to indulge in housie with the tens of dolls, he would put on high volume the Guns N’ Roses hits. The heavy metal along with the menacing lyrics would make me and the neatly turned out barbies turn their heads 360 degrees. I swear I had imagined many of them thumping their feet on the ground and playing air guitar, in my sleep. Such was the terror. Metallica used to be served in breakfast with a lull of few hours as he terrorized the school; snacks and dinner would literally put the house on fire with The Rolling Stones. What to say, we were a music loving family. After all, what choice does one have when it continuously plays in the background and blurs your foreground?
The secret, however, was that we were loved by our local chemist as we boosted his ear plug sales. The ear plugs would filter the unnecessary and we could go about our daily tasks without drilling a hole in my brother’s skull to see what screw God decided to keep with Himself while manufacturing him. But what I didn’t realize at that point was that my hands would suddenly stop moving and my ears would get trained to hear the in-between high voltage guitar piece that would come into play in almost every heavy metal gig. The ear plugs would come out and I, for a moment, would be lost in the acoustics.
The strings of the guitar and the rapidly moving fingers on it would make me look wide eyed at the guitar player in the video and wonder, “How the hell can he play such brilliant music, that too with his eyes closed?” The fingers would just automatically find the next string, the previous one and the next one again to create a cloud of trance. Every pluck, every strum would become the background music of life. It still does.
College was the perfect time to pursue this hidden desire to be the lead guitarist of my imaginary band. I tried, I really did. But could never understand more than one definition of G string. Ahem. The fingers developed blisters and in a week, I had decided that listening to guitar was more therapeutic than actually learning to play it. My attention had also shifted to something else. Actually someone else. Few months and plenty of dates later, this guy, in a weak moment, hummed a few lines, from his favorite song.
So close, no matter how far
Couldn’t be much more from the heart
Forever trusting who we are
And nothing else matters….
Never opened myself this way
Life is ours, we live it our way
All these words, I don’t just say
And nothing else matters…
A power ballad from who else but Metallica. Heavy metal had entered in my life, again, minus the ear plugs. He loved it for the guitar and I loved him for the love of it. He still enjoys it as much. Last I checked, he was making our son listen to this number.
I still yearn to learn the guitar someday, understand the major and minor of it. To play it for the boys who brainwashed me into loving it during the pillow fights and the cuddles. Till then, it’s rock and roll with the air guitar.
This post is part of the WordPress Daily Prompts : 365 Writing Prompts program where the aim is to post at least once a day based on the prompts that they have provided. Today’s prompt is, “Tell us about a talent you’d love to have…but don’t.”]
I am one of the guest authors at We Post Daily for the month of September.