Do you remember how vibrant colors were when you were a kid? Blues, reds, yellows, greens, bicycles, toy cars, crayons, balloons … The colors were so deep, and rich and appealing. I would literally wake up and fall in love with colors.
The next hero in my world involved, not a blue cape and mask, but an album cover full of colors. And actually, the hero, was not a hero at all, it was a family of heroes.
I first heard The Partridge Family album “Up To Date” while up the street at a neighbor’s house. These particular neighbors were more than just neighbors, they were God’s gift to an only child living on a cul-de-sac with two older parents (as mentioned, my sister was 11 years older than I and off to college by the time I was 6).
The Fries family had eight kids and were, to this day, the coolest family I’ve ever met. They were wild, crazy and totally, amazingly fun to hang out with. They had toys--motorcycles with a dirt moto-cross track in their backyard, a jet boat, a shag carpet van driven by an unlicensed 15 year old older brother with a love of McDonalds, a house in Laguna Beach, and a ton of great music perennially cranking out of the living room stereo.
In a nut shell, the Fries family were rock and roll.
I first heard the album “Up To Date” while creating human sandwiches with couch pillows in the Fries’ living room. We were bouncing up and down on top of each other to the song I’ll Meet You Halfway. The Fries kids were telling me all about The Partridge Family television show which I had never seen before, but I was loving the music and I remember looking at the album cover and being mesmerized by the different colors and birthdates for each member of the family. It was more than my six year old mind could digest, and I instantly wanted to be a Partridge (not to mention a Fries).
This was the day, incidentally, I learned an interesting fact about my own family and its relationship to music.
The second oldest Fries brother, Tom, walked into the room, turned down the stereo and announced. “Chris’s dad signed the Beatles.”
Everybody seemed excited, all except for me. I asked, “who are the Beatles?”
I was absolutely, unequivocally ignorant.
Before I knew it, a new LP replaced the Partridge Family album. It was, “A Hard Day’s Night.”
Everybody started bopping and gyrating--all except for me. I just kept staring at the Partridge Family Album thinking, “I wish my dad had signed The Partridge Family.”
The reason I bring up “Matman” (prior story) and me wishing my dad had signed The Partridge Family instead of the Beatles, is because I want to emphasize the starting place in my life. Delusion. Why? Because, to me, delusion is the truest form of self acceptance. The moment you pretend that you’re anything less than delusional, is to me, the moment you have committed sin. To be born in the first place is a deluded, preposterous, courageous, incomprehensible act of creativity that defies all logic. To deny your own delusion, is to deny your own existence. Art is universal. Creativity is everywhere. Genius belongs to the masses.
BECAUSE, each and every person is completely unique and original and DELUDED to be here in the first place.
The ONLY obstacle I see in the world is pretention. For me, it is the separation of yourself from yourself, it IS biting the apple. And in it’s worst form, it creates Nazis.
There’s a great quote by Einstein. “For an idea that does not at first seem insane, there is no hope.”
Recognizing my own unique delusion is the ultimate respect I can pay the universe. It is why I am here. I was deluded enough to actually believe I could be born, so why wouldn’t I honor that by living a deluded life?