Small Role, Big Impact

Have you ever had one of those people who wandered in your life for a very brief moment of time, but made a humongous impact? Today, I want to reflect on a person who changed my life over one small interaction at a record store.

Four years ago I bought an electric guitar. It was this crappy $100 Fender, I just wanted something to play around with in my apartment. My life was forever changed when I broke a string on this guitar.

I was at Amoeba Records browsing around with my roommate. I noticed that near the check out counter they sold guitar strings which was perfect because I broke mine. As I went to the check out counter, the clerk started making small talk with me.

“Do you play guitar?” he asked as he rang up my strings. Dumb question, I thought. “Yes, I do” I replied. “For how long?” he continued. “About 10 years, but I’m not really all that good.” The clerk then paused and said, “well the secret to getting good at the guitar is to practice every day.” I politely thanked him and walked out of the store laughing to myself. Well, duh! I thought, of course if you want to get good at something, you have to practice. I told my roommate about the seemingly silly interaction and we both laughed at how simplistic the clerk’s advice was.

Then I got home and I started to change the strings on my guitar. To get good at guitar, you have to practice everyday. I picked up the guitar that afternoon and played. I then picked up the guitar almost every single day after that and played. The clerk was right, I started to get better at playing guitar.

After that interaction with the record store clerk, I made a lot of progress in my guitar playing and song writing. I wrote and recorded three albums of music, I got to play guitar with the lead guitarists of one of my very favorite bands, I performed in a couple of art shows, and I briefly formed my own band.

Sometimes just the smallest interaction can really make a significant difference in your life.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *