Only living boy in New York

Obviously not, but it is one of my favorite Simon and Garfunkel songs. I was in NYC earlier this week (Saturday afternoon through Tuesday AM) and since then that song has been going through my head. Professionally, the NYC trip was okay. The concert went well (I had an excellent dancer performing on Ludwig Van Halen) and we were able to do all the adjudication for Electronic Music Midwest with a minimum of fuss and muss.

Socially, the trip excelled. I wasn’t able to see all the people I wanted to see since my time was so limited. Hanging out with the EMM crew is always a blast, though. We get along well, laugh a lot, and still manage a decent amount of productivity. This is one of the things I always enjoy about the EMM festival: it is a social event as much as it is a music event. We try to foster interpersonal connections and discussions alongside our awesome sound system and variety of programmed music (end plug here).

What was really great was hanging out with my cousin Peter McCain and his wife Kathy Lindboe. They were generous enough to let me crash at their place in Brooklyn during my stay and it was great to catch up with them. Peter and I have always gotten along well, we are rather close in age and I would spend a ton of time with him when my family would go visit our Wisconsin relatives. After we all grew up and moved away, we obviously haven’t seen much of each other. At various family functions we’d meet up and find out that we actually have a lot of stuff to talk about. Peter is an actor (as you can tell from his site and his reel) and his wife is a writer/director/producer. We have a great time talking about creativity in general and lives devoted to art. The best part is we don’t necessarily fully understand what each other does (Peter and Kathy came to the concert on Sunday, fueling even more great talks).

Peter’s dad and my dad have had longtime careers as salesmen/businessmen (Kathy’s dad sounds a lot like my dad), so we got to talk about how we sometimes feel a bit like outcasts when we are at family gatherings. Not shunned or anything, just that the world that we live in is totally foreign to the rest of our family. It was so great to “talk shop” with each other! Even though I know about as much about the acting/moviemaking industry as they do about electroacoustic music, we had a common ground of creative expression that bound us together even though our individual expressions were different. And beer.

It was a great trip and, for the first time, I saw NYC as a place that appealed to me. I was born, bred, and educated in the fly-over states. I’ve never feel either coast pulling me away from the Midwest and never felt the desire to “make it there.” Earlier this week, I think I can see why people would do it. I’m still not going to, mind you, I’m happy where I am, but I can see why so many people do it.

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