~ jousting at the to-do list

I was looking back at the novel manuscript I started when I did Nanowrimo a few years ago… it’s something I’ve written on from time to time. I’d forgotten I had some pages I’d written in 2007 and I was chuckling as I read them. I think to myself, ‘I should do something with that’… then I look at my plans for a non-fiction book, and an album, and to write & pitch music for film/tv, and the musical collaborations I’m supposed to be working on, and the students I have scheduled to teach… and I wonder if it isn’t too much for one human being to manage.

Especially when most of those things have an intrinsic value – meaning the doing of them has worth in and of itself – but those activities, at least at this moment, do nothing to help pay down the debts that haunt my cash flow or the bills that arrive at the door. I’ve budgeted myself for years, and have been working to pay down the debts… but then something always happens – like the dental work this month that’s going to cost $1,200, ha ha ha ha ha – that makes it impossible not to use credit. I have been paying things down, and I know I will pay off a couple of debts this year… but today it just feels like an immense burden to know I am paying so much now for the mismanagement of the past.

I have been working diligently on the to-do lists and trying to make headway on the things that dog my footsteps. I called the junk-hauling firm for a quote on how much it will cost to haul some old furniture and other stuff away. Not bad, maximum maybe $175 for a truck load. I’ve moved away from the ‘why can’t I clean up the kitchen in the morning so I’ll feel better all day’ dilemma by (surprise) doing the dishes before I go to bed. I worked out my budget for the month yesterday, and I started sorting receipts and paperwork in preparation for doing the books so I can do my taxes. I worked on a couple of collaborations but I wasn’t able to finish them as planned. I’m going to have to go over my Task List/Schedule and revise it with what I’ve been able to do – if I don’t do that soon, it will have no relevance and it will be just another thing collecting dust.

I am doing well on the ‘look after yourself’ front, by going to bed at a more reasonable hour, and I think the healthy eating that I’ve been focused on for the past few weeks is going to pay dividends in more energy in time. In fact, I feel a difference already.

So last week, I worked on producing a song written by Dean & Lucian, brainstormed & researched & drafted a sample of a collab with Geoff. I also have a collab with Chuck to record vocals for. I rehearsed with my friend Larrien for our gig last night, and I challenged myself to sing more originals for that gig, I think it went well. I was to begin work on the book outline on Wednesday, but I ended up going to town to get a harmonica rack and an additional mic stand for the gig, and lost my writing time.

This coming week I have to do the month end stuff like pay the rent & bills; have the dental work; work on those collaborations; start a couple of instrumental tracks & complete the recording of one of my songs. Also have to sort the music for the next gig & get that going. And write the blogs. And start painting that painting I have to start. I'm going to be interviewed by Debra Russell (Artists-Edge) later in the month, need to send her some background info.

I have no idea if it is at all interesting to read my to-do list, lol. Hang in and keep putting one foot in front of the other. Get out and walk. Stop and smell the roses. Keep breathing, and be aware of spring sprouting.

~ art is always a process

When I was a child, I drew and I painted (here's one of my early 'works'). I had a wonderful art teacher in high school. He taught me line drawing, taught me to appreciate poetry, and introduced me to "The Hobbit" and "The Lord of the Rings". I was in hospital for several weeks when I was 17, I remember having a sketch book with me and drawing all the time. Where did that go? It seemed to disappear once I left school. I was told that art and music were hobbies, agreeable pastimes on days off, but that one needed to do something 'serious' to make a living.

Then, in 2002, I was working through 'The Artist's Way' with a girlfriend. I was out on an 'artist date' with myself, window shopping and poking in antique stores along Fort Street. I walked by this art supply store named 'Island Blue'. In the window was a set of watercolour paints like the ones we used to have in school. It was on sale.

I said to myself, "I've always wanted to do that!"

So I went in and bought the set, an extra brush, and some watercolour paper. I came home and set myself up in the kitchen, and just started to paint. I had no idea what I was doing, really, but I found myself drawn to it. Painting seemed to take me to a place I hadn't been before. It calmed me, helped me to focus my scattered mind, and expressed something within me, all at the same time.

I asked my sister (who had already been painting, had taken classes & workshops, won ribbons at shows & often sold her work) if she was interested in going to life drawing with me.

We went to our first drop-in session. I was scared and excited. As the class progressed and the poses changed, became longer, I found myself frustrated with the little sketch pad I'd brought with me. When I went back the next time, I brought a huge pad of construction-style paper (like you use for finger painting), and then I was happy as a clam. I liked "big". I liked letting my hand move with less constriction. Then I began to paint my life drawings, using those same watercolours.

I joined an group of female painters, again with my sister. Someone made the comment that the watercolours I was using were not permanent. That comment, unfortunately, made me stop painting. The group disbanded after a few months, but funnily enough, the watercolours I painted in 2002 and 2003 still are bright and unfaded with the passage of time.

Finally, I asked my sister about changing to acrylics. I managed to save up and bought a couple of canvases, a box of acrylic paints, a few brushes. I began to try out this new medium. I found I liked it. The colours were brighter, you could create texture, the canvas didn't fray if you painted over something - and you could paint over something. I continued to explore acrylics but went back to watercolours occasionally to paint birds. I sold all my original watercolours of birds, and sometimes the odd small acrylic. I didn't paint steadily though. I would have a flash of activity in the summer, and paint every day... and then it would die away in the fall.

Recently I joined another local painting group. I'm hoping that having the opportunity to meet other artists, to see their work, to workshop mediums, set goals, and have the opportunity to have my work in shows... will help me to stay motivated to paint.

At my first evening meeting with the group, we all said we'd begin working on an abstract to bring to the next monthly meeting, in April. I remembered that I have an abstract watercolour sketch. I'm thinking of basing an acrylic on it. I like how it flows. I bought a couple of 'portable easels' last summer so it's easy enough for me to set one of those up, pull out an empty canvas, dig out the paints, and start to work. At least it seems easy to think about, but there is always reluctance. I think that's a natural part of the creative process. The trick is, not to give into that resistance. The trick is, to remind myself it doesn't have to be 'good'. Experiment, follow the brush, see where it takes me.

~ finding your own voice

We hear that phrase all over the place. It says that you need to speak or write as an individual, reach within and bring out what’s inside. But what if your voice has been silenced, hidden away, suppressed?

What if you don’t even know what ‘your voice’ has to say? You speak, but is it really you speaking? You write, but where do those words come from?

Our self-esteem, our self-identity is tied up with our voice, whether it’s as a writer, singer, or speaker. You could probably extend that to artists, actors, and others who use their eyes, hands and media to communicate something. Stepping out and speaking up, expressing our own thoughts and opinions may seem simple to some. For the rest of us, it’s a tall order.

Eckhart Tolle talks about us ‘being the awareness behind our thoughts’ and I think this is crucial to the advancement of our ability to use our voice to express ourselves.

In singing, over time, as we work, we learn to ‘hear’ what we are thinking, and we learn to change it. Our awareness is the first step, then, to growth. Awareness is a non-emotional, non-judgemental consciousness of what we are doing in the moment. It’s a real time assessment. Our experiences, over time, lead us to habits and repetitive thinking, some of which is useful and healthy, and some of which is not. Being ‘awake’ is the only way to see the difference and make choices.

It’s not always easy, and Tolle talks about this as well. We may recognize what we are doing, but we may be unable to change it in the moment. If we stay the course, and practice being aware, sometimes we will be able to change our reactions mid-stream. If we continue, we will be able to recognize the thought when it happens and react in the new way. Eventually, the old thought will simply disappear.

I know from the practice of singing that we just can’t erase old programming, though. We really have to put new programming in its place. In singing, technique helps us with this. As we apply the elements of craft to what we are doing, the combination of awareness and technical application begins to free the voice. In addition, as we sing the different vowels, we are resonating. We feel good, hopefully, as we practice. Each sound that we sing, on various scales, is associated with healing, with energy, and in a sense is meditative.

I believe that any art form requires this approach. To be a great actor, you need to know all facets of the Self so you can bring one or more out as needed when performing, but you have to know where your light is. As a visual artist, you need to trust your instincts, and your hands to express, while understanding how to mix colours. As a writer you put things down on paper in a certain way, a way that reflects your thoughts and your dreams, but you have to know how to string words together so they make sense.

People say that being ‘commercial’ in the writing of music (or other artistic endeavors) is limiting. They say that when you produce commercial work that it is homogenized, cookie cutter, less valuable than non-commercial work. I say they both have their place. Non-commercial may be ‘uncrafted’, but its rawness can appeal. Commercial music can be too ‘mechanical’, but its textures can be interesting.

I hear the same non-commercial vs commercial discussion in singing. The raw, untrained voice is liked because of its earthiness but is sometimes limited in range. The trained, crafted voice is liked because of its strength and consistency, but may lack presence.

In my opinion the true voice reveals itself through an equal application of technique and authenticity. Being ‘yourself’ but striving to master your instrument of choice so the sounds or shapes or colours express meaning but can still be understood.

Your own voice is… inspiration, perspiration and craft practiced together ~

~ treading water

Sick with a cold, I have no energy and feel like doing nothing (but I am keeping up with the dishes). I’ve made some to-do lists for upcoming projects. I’ve cancelled my teaching. I have vocals to record but can’t even croak out a tune. I’m a little sorry for myself. But I’ll be right as rain in a day or two. I’ve sketched out a basic arrangement for the bedtrack of an original song I want to get laid down. I took a little time to update my mailing list and change it over to a new server. I’d like to send out a monthly newsletter – I had nearly 500 people on my list – but it always seemed to be on the back burner, especially since I’m already writing blogs. I recorded American Idol this week and did a fairly thorough review of the singing of each contestant & posted that as well. I have more things to do but I think I’m just going to go lie down. Maybe I find some energy tomorrow. Good thing is the Vancouver Canucks are playing the St Louis Blues tonight. I’ll croak “go Canucks!!” at the tv, and try not to yell "shoot, shoot, SHHOOT!"

~ the past runs circles around the future

"The best day of your life is the one on which you decide your life is your own. No apologies or excuses. No one to lean on, rely on, or blame. The gift is yours - it is an amazing journey - and you alone are responsible for the quality of it.

This is the day your life really begins.”
~ Bob Moawad

Ha. I spend a few minutes looking for quotes to inspire a blog. I picked this one. But my mind is blank. Let’s see…..

It’s a hard moment, realizing that your life belongs to you. That you can no longer blame your parents for your choices. That you can choose how to think and what to do. It’s so easy to say “your life is your own”, but is it?

The truth is that human beings are extremely complex. Why I think what I think when I think it, is based on a whole host of factors. Things I remember, things I do not. Survival mechanisms. Patterns. Programming. A ‘wanting to do the ‘right’ thing’. A way of being.

We are programmed as we grow, we receive messages from those around us, and we filter those messages through our own perceptions. It’s like we are built on precedent. That person smiled at me but then talked behind my back. Maybe the next person who smiles at me will do the same. So we get suspicious. We’re told over and over again that we are unworthy, that we are lazy and stupid, that we aren’t good enough… we start to act that way. We limit our socializing, we don’t go after promotions at work, we remain single or we get into unhealthy relationships. We give up on ourselves because what’s the point of trying, we’re never going to ‘get’ it anyway. We just don’t have ‘it’.

We talk about change, but it’s pretty obvious that it isn’t easy to achieve. Finding more creativity in our lives. Quitting smoking. Cutting down on coffee. Getting organized, eating healthy. Getting out of bad relationships and finding good ones. Making ourselves over, becoming the vision we have for ourselves…. These things are very very easy to say… but extremely hard to accomplish.

Change is hard because there is something in us that has a vested interested in us staying the same.

I know this because, as far as I have progressed on this journey of mine, there are still patterns of behavior that seem to defeat me. My tendency to stay up too late, which sabotages my energy & my work on the following day. Thereby directly affecting my success. My procrastination, which uses up energy in guilt & frustration. My scatteredness, which means that at any one time I am doing a multitude of things but probably not the thing that really needs to get done. My dislike of talking on the phone, which directly affects relationships with friends, family and business clients. The nasty way I sometimes talk to myself in this regard. That internal editor is very good at hitting all the right buttons.

I’ve noticed things like…. I have this plan that I will get up in the morning, and while the kettle is boiling, I’ll do the dishes & tidy the kitchen. I know that when the kitchen is tidy I feel… lighter, better. I like walking into my kitchen and seeing an empty sink and clean counters, a steamer that’s been washed out and is ready to go. So I’ll get up in the morning and go into the kitchen, fill the kettle. I’ll start sorting out the dishes… and this incredible lassitude will sweep over me. ‘I don’t feel like doing this’ I’ll think to myself, wilting by the sink. If I listen to that voice, the kitchen stays unsorted and then… that same voice happily tells me how lazy I am for the rest of the day. I know the only way to ‘win’ is to actually do the dishes. Then the strategy of the voice is defeated.

Another is… planning some time off to rest, relax, but also organize some things around the house. Bedroom needs some work, office drawers / paperwork needs sorting. A few hours of concentrated effort, and everything will be in its place. ‘Tomorrow’, I tell myself. Then I’ll stay up til midnight, think about going to bed… and the little voice in my head will say, ‘oh, let’s check out….’, and the next thing you know it’s 4 am and I’m playing games on the computer. Then I sleep in til noon, wake up exhausted, and don’t feel like doing anything. Oh, the voice in my head has a field day with that.

The good thing about all of this is that I am aware of these things. I know. I see myself doing these behaviours. I try not to judge, I try to ask myself why. What is it that I achieve by continuing to do (or not do) things in this way?

Answer: I don’t move forward. I stay stuck. The bedroom stays untidy, the office stays unorganized, I feel tired. These things keep me from being in the flow, from finishing projects, from being where I want to be. I distract myself from my purpose. Perhaps also, this not moving forward is meant to satisfy the voices of my youth, that told me I was useless, unworthy, and unlovable. I know these things aren’t true. On a very deep level. At last. But the old behaviours are still there, weighing me down.

My first task is to forgive myself for being unable to change this programming. Yet. My next task is to think of how I can rewrite it. Be progressive. Say “yes I can.”

Really, the answer is simple. As my maestro used to say "it's so simple it's hard." The answer is to do. Change comes from action, however small. Change comes from repeated doing. Change comes from recognizing the old pattern and taking steps to do something different.

Last night, I did the dishes before I went to bed. Got up to a clean kitchen. Last night, I made a start on the bedroom, sorted out some clothes, put old newspapers and magazines in recycle, put the Christmas wrapping away in the Christmas box. I went to bed at a reasonable time, fell asleep with the light on and a book in my hand. I got up at a reasonable hour and am now writing during the time I've set aside for writing.

Action, butterfly. Slow, repeated steps in the direction you wish to go. Change will come in its time. If you do the work.

I am undone.

Deciding to write a novel, I set myself the goal of putting words down on paper. At least 500 words a day. It doesn’t sound like a lot, but it’s reasonable, given time and given the limited ability of my hands to type for long periods. So I’d get up in the morning, and make myself the wonderful treat of freshly ground French roast coffee. I’d sit down with the keyboard, or notebook, and look at the blank page in front of me. A few words might come. Feeling blocked, I’d read what I wrote the day before, out loud, enjoying my coffee. I’d struggle to get a sentence or two down. And then these thoughts would start intruding.

I’d see an image of my dresser in my mind. The dresser whose drawers barely open because they are stuffed with clothes, receipts, books, bags, belts, socks, gifts I bought for Christmas that I forgot about, empty film canisters, buttons, probably even a battery or two. The dresser I don’t even use because it’s full of stuff, and I don’t remember what stuff is in there, and whatever it is, I’m not planning to wear it anytime soon.

As I try to focus on writing, the dresser becomes something I should urgently do something about. Really, how am I expected to write, be in the flow, when there is junk piling up around me? Perhaps it’s time I sorted the closet. Or washed the kitchen floor.

Now these are all agreeable things. I suppose. Things that should be done, so that we can actually move through the house and perhaps even find things when we want them. If we can remember we have them.

But I cheerfully and thoroughly ignore these things all the time. They only enter my conscious when I am seeking some errant bit of stuff that I know I have somewhere in this house, damn it. Or perhaps when I’m fantasizing about getting organized.

So why do they decide to jump up and demand attention when I’m busy trying to pull something from thin air and shape it into bookly form?

How easily I am distracted by from my purpose. Things that I haven’t done and should do intrude when I’m attempting to be creative. Or, things that I shouldn’t be doing because they have no purpose start to take up my time. Like checking my email, or Facebook, or Twittering, or playing computer games.

Indeed. I look objectively at the time wasting and energy absorbing non-productive things that I seem to do, and shake my head at myself. Where is the fulfillment in passively participating? Not that it isn’t good to be the consumer of art, theatre, books, music, nature. But when our consumption is a way of not being present, a way of avoiding the doing, then I would suppose it to be unhealthy. And perhaps a way of sabotaging success.

So, haunted by the things that are undone, I play cards. Attempting to create something, I am distracted by other responsibilities I normally could care less about.

Seems to me if I could harness the energy I put into guilt, procrastination, passive participation in useless activity, and obsessively checking my email… I might actually write my 500 words, or more, easily. I might actually set aside an afternoon and sort out the dresser. Or mop the kitchen floor. But I’m not sure about the closet. If I went in there to tidy up, who knows what might happen. I’d be buried under debris, unable to move. For hours. With nothing to do. Then I’d probably come up with some great ideas for the book. Hope I can find a pen.

living awkwardly

Deficiency motivation doesn't work. It will lead to a life-long pursuit of try to fix “me”. Learn to appreciate what you have & where and who you are.” ~ Wayne Dyer

Had coffee with a good friend this morning. We talk about such interesting things. Like sustainabililty. We discuss what that means when we make our personal choices, and when we manage our business lives. We talk about emancipation as it relates to our inner voice and our inner vision. About recognizing our programming and striving to grow beyond it. We talk about ideas that will connect us to other people, about being authentic and human as we reach out to share our experience with others… hoping that they might find some value in the story of our life to this point. That’s a big conversation for an early Saturday morning when you haven’t had a lot of sleep because you were up late working on a creative project that lights your fire. I’m surprised I can remember it, lol.

I think my journey of growth started years ago when I read a series of books by Dr. Wayne Dyer, in particular, “The Errogenous Zone” and “The Sky’s the Limit”. Dyer helped me grow the first little bit of awareness about my own programming. How I got into modes of communication with my parents and family and people at work… how my responses were habits based on the ways I thought about myself and how I related to the world. He made me think about the idea that, if I changed my response to something… perhaps the other person might change their behavior too – because we were both locked into our communicative rut. And he phrased it well, too.

You were to remove judgement and emotion from your response, and just say your truth with dignity. You were to forgive yourself if a situation happened and you responded in the usual way. You’d take note, and perhaps the next time you’d be able to recognize an old behavior pattern before you went too far down that road.

Thinking back, I can see that much of my way of relating to the world was based on fear, self-protection, anger… and the sense that I was being always judged, found wanting, not good enough. I always, always, tried to read beneath the lines of what people said and did, and how they looked when they said and did it. By assessing all these signals I would make assumptions… and those assumptions were always filtered through my extreme self-consciousness and egocentric thinking.

I hated going into the coffee room at work on Monday’s. I knew someone would ask ‘how was your weekend.’ It always felt like any sort of question about my life was an intrusion of some kind. I couldn’t have a conversation in the coffee room without literally stammering an embarrassed reply no matter what the subject. At the moment attention was on me and I was expected to respond with a casual chit-catty reply, everything in me tensed up. My breath would stop. I’d raise my shoulders, stretch my neck, lift my chin up as my eyes went up & to the side, my eyelids fluttered, my tongue stuck to the roof of my mouth, and I hated myself in that moment for feeling so awkward and stupid. In an odd way, it was like having a seizure.

Such a small thing, asking someone ‘how are you?’ It’s not like they were asking me to end world hunger, or to give a talk on brain surgery. If I couldn’t answer the question ‘how was your weekend’ without falling apart, how could I have the skills to be a supervisor at work, or be an actor on the stage? If I thought so little of myself, focused on my flaws, thought that I was boring and stupid, how could I ever believe I was someone worthy of marriage, or someone capable of being a good mother?

When I think of the easy way I chat to people now, it still absolutely astounds me that I found a path, a way, an awakening… that slowly, over time, allowed me to become who I am today. I’m writing this blog to share that journey with you… I hope that some of what I say resonates with my readers and helps them feel inspired to keep working on themselves, and their art (because creativity IS the path out), and stay the course.

I felt so alone in those days. Surrounded by people, but lost in space. Not any more. I am grateful we have this technology that allows us to reach out and share with each other. I am thankful that -- most of the time -- I don’t stammer any more.

I think therefore I procrastinate...

What did I do today? I worked. I had a quick lunch with my mom. I had a massage to help with the tension in my neck & shoulders and put my hips back into alignment. I walked home from downtown, taking pictures along the way. I thought of writing a book (I often do). I posted a blog, answered emails, worked on an instrumental, watched some Hugh Grant movies… still one on right now, but the tv is on mute because I was working on music.

I am trying to think of something interesting and profound to say in this blog, which I am determined to write now because I made up a little schedule of things I have to do on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis, and this is my last weekly thingy. On that same to-do list is odd things like… update my website, which I did yesterday, and organize my receipts and start doing my books (bletch). Sounds really fancy but it’s really just adding up all those pieces of paper to see what my expenses were (a lot) and add up the income I noted in my diary, and then do my taxes. (Sigh.)

This week I tried to cut down on the time I spend on-line to focus more on writing music… I admit, I tend to spend a little too much time on songwriting forums, reading updates on Facebook & Twitter, checking my email, surfing. I am easily distracted, lol.

I got an email about “Script Frenzy,” which is another personal writing challenge, this time… to write a 100 page script in the month of April. I tried it out last year and wrote about 10 or 15 pages. Had fun, though, casting my film with Viggo Mortensen & trying to work out character development and plot. If I do it, I’ll probably just continue with the film I started last year.

I’m way behind on my personal challenge of writing 50 tracks for film/tv this year. By now I should have written at least 6 or 7, I’ve done 3. I will see if I can catch up a bit this month.

Also been thinking of trying to organize this house of mine. I’m aware that these thoughts, about organizing my papers & receipts, doing my books & taxes, getting rid of junk & tidying the house… these thoughts come to visit me often. I agree doing those things would be nice. Well, not doing them, but the end result of doing them. I have set aside some time and will try to actually achieve something and not get defeated before I start. I admit I often start but seldom finish these chores. Like laundry & housework, they do not excite me at all.

~ songwriters should be writing (lots of) songs

It's funny, because, whenever I tell people that FAWM means challenging yourself to write at least 14 songs in 28 days, in most cases the first response is either "I couldn't do that" or "I don't have time for that".

"February is Album Writing Month" deals directly with the "I couldn't do that" by giving you the licence to be mediocre, silly/stupid, to just run with it and write songs about anything and everything. I sometimes feel embarrassed by what I upload but I tell myself - that's the point. To let go of the end result, and push yourself to create.

The first time I did FAWM I wrote 3 songs. The next year I wrote 15. Last year I did 23. This year, 32. Most of them are just exercises in creativity, or sketches of ideas I think have merit. The point of doing FAWM is to do it.

But FAWM can't deal with "I don't have time for that." That's an issue that has greater significance than just during the month of February. If we are calling ourselves songwriters, then IMHO we need to be writing songs. Just like the person who wants to be a novelist gets up an hour early every day to write pages for their book, IMHO songwriters need to be scribbling something everyday. FAWM taught me how to find ideas. It taught me to think outside the lines. Being part of the FAWM community I am always in awe of the creativity and energy of the most active participants. Yet I think every one of them would say - they only push for the extreme numbers during FAWM.

What we are really doing in February is sketching out ideas or drafts to be re-written in March & April... and exercising our creative muscles.

As to quality versus quantity. I'm real believer in quality. But I think we can spend too much time with one song - get too attached to it, think too much of it, to the point where we can't see its flaws. In 2007 FAWM I carefully crafted each song and went over and over them again and again as the clock ticked down. After a week and 3 songs I realized I didn't have time to do that. FAWM helped me to let go and move on, trusting I could come back later. And, with the added advantage that when I come back, my eyes are fresh.

FAWM encourages us to create first, craft later. Therefore it supports both quantity and quality.

I could never back to the time when I wrote a song every few months. Now I write all the time. Even though FAWM is done, I got up this morning and starting drafting a new action instrumental.

It's just my personal practice, but I try to write something every day. It doesn't have to be a complete song, although sometimes it is. Sometimes it's the beats for a bedtrack. Sometimes it's adding to something I did yesterday. Sometimes it's starting a lyric.

I already said this but I'll say it again - one of the best things FAWM does for me, other than pushing me to create, is it makes me look for ideas in all kinds of places. Writer's block? Never.

I read a post somewhere over the last couple years that suggested we give ourselves structure by organizing our work something like this: e.g. February - writing; March - rewriting; April - recording. I think this might work for some folks. I'm always doing a jumble of all three, lol.