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Riffing with Otis




Let’s take a break, Otis. I’m getting older.

  Yeah? What else makes you so special?

Ha, ha, ha. No, I'm just feeling it lately.

  Huh. What happened? Did a mirror catch you?

There’s that, too. Like Bonnie said, "Those lines are pretty hard to take when they're staring back at you."

  Be glad someone's looking back in the mirror.

And I feel… small.

  You're six feet tall. Do I have to listen to this?

Come on. How long have you been my imaginary bass player, Otis?

  I don't know. About as long as you've had your imaginary talent.

Oh, that’s good. Spot on. I can’t get my fingers to work. Gives me fits.

  Say what?

I mean, I'm not a kid. Time and aptitude aren't on my side anymore.

  Anymore? Humph. Let me tell you, sister, they never were.

Hey, when you're young, your life is all in front of you. You have all the time in the world.

  Says who? Your friend Leslie? Terrie? Jim? You don't know how much time you've got. Ever. Young or old.

You're not helping.

  I’m not? Know what? You should give up.

I know that look in your eyes. Hit me.

  All right, sister, since you asked: who on this good green earth are you trying to impress? Give up the ambition, already. Do you want another career out of this? Just stay on the path. Enjoy the flowers.

Ouch. Now I remember why I keep you around.

  And just one more thing

With you, it’s never just one more thing, but go on.

  One more thing. Don't ever let me hear you feeling sorry for yourself again, or I'm gone. You've been given a lot, you hear? Friends. Two hands and a good head. Use them.

Okay, okay.

  And one more thing

Slow down, my imaginary secretary can’t keep up.

  With your hair down to your shoulders like that, in that striped shirt, you look a little like Pat Metheny.

Sometimes I don't know whether to smack you or kiss you. Do I sound like him?

  No way, Renée, not with that Virginia accent.

How ab—

  No. No, no, no. Not even when you’re tuning. Don’t blaspheme.

Just asking. Now you're all la-de-da because you skunked me in eight ball.

  I can't help it if you can't tell solids from stripes. And who loses to an imaginary opponent, anyway?

So I'm honest. I called a foul on myself. So sue me.

  Just sayin’, sister, if you're gonna shoot pool, don't quit your day job.

I'm retired. My day job is listening to you rag on the metronome to stay on the beat.

  Look who’s talking.

But I'll hand it to you. You're killing it on "I Saw the Light".

  Well, listen to you, Miss Olden Small.

Play for me, get the irony for free.

  I don't know why I put up with this. It sure ain't the pay.

Want to run through "Imaginary Lover" again? That always cheers you up.

  May as well. I got to refill my drink.

That's my drink, you twit. You're imaginary, remember?

  It was just my imagin-a-a-tion, running a-way with meeee...

Otis, you're not much to look at, but you're still a keeper.

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Diane, I always enjoy reading your blogs, trying to catch the subliminal message. Otis is right, there are more years behind us than ahead, so enjoy the moment. A wise scholar once told me that there is a reason why the car has a large windshield with a small rear view mirror. Enjoy the past but keep your priorities in front of you. You and Otis make quite a pair, making beautiful music, arm in arm heading into the future.


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