Tag Archive: singer


[Possible bonus points: 10]

On Monday nights, I usually play at Mr. Troll’s open mic at Poor David’s Pub. It’s the best listening room in town and Carlos Sanchez is the best sound man in town. Troll also let’s me talk about the Dallas Songwriters Association before my set. But the point is that I stop by Schlotzsky’s on the way because dinner usually isn’t ready when I leave. I go the location on Midway, just south of Spring Valley, before getting on the tollway.

I walked into Schlotzsky’s and stood back looking at the menu. The young man that has helped me out for the past several weeks (and seems like he’ll be there a while, unlike some) told the girl behind the cash register to treat me right because I was one of his best customers. She smiled, and he added that I would tell him if she didn’t treat me well. By this time, I was smiling, too.

I looked at the menu while she stood, patiently waiting. I considered having salad and perhaps soup as a pick two deal. Then I smiled and shook my head.

“I’ll just go for the same old thing. I thought about having a salad, but I have a show tonight and it’s hard to eat salad.”

“Show? What do you do?” she asked as she rang up my sandwich and chips.

“I’m a singer/songwriter.”

“Oh, really? Where do you play?”

“Well, I’m playing at an open mic at Poor David’s Pub tonight, but I play places around here quite a bit.”

While we were talking, I reached into my pocket for a business card.

“I have a friend,” she was saying, “he plays music and he moved…”

She stopped as she looked at my card. She looked at me kind of puzzled.

“Do you have a son?”

“Yes,” I answered, not bothering to add that I have three sons.

“Conner?”

“Yes, I’m Conner’s father.”

“Conner, that just moved to California?”

“Yes.”

“We’re Facebook friends. We have been since early in high school.”

“Tell him you saw me.”

“I will,” She stuck out her hand. “I’m Martha.”

“Dan.”

I waited for my sandwich, left, and headed for the tollway.

You get the 10 bonus points if you figured out that Conner was the friend she was about to tell me about when she read my card.

Peace be with you.

Dan at CUMC 3At my one man show at Christ UMC a couple of weeks ago, I played my newest song, Hello Out There, for the first time in public. Introducing the song, I explained that there were various members of church families that were on the autistic spectrum. I was not personally familiar with autism untill a few years ago. I noticed the symptoms in a few of the children, but did not know it was autism.

A college student at church was helping with the Autism center at UNT in Denton and facilitated a program at church with a director of an autism program who had autistic children. After that I began to realize how varied the autism spectrum is. If you do not know, the autistic spectrum stretches from those who are highly functioning to those who are low functioning. Those who are highly functioning need steady, but only slight, intervention by others. Those who are low functioning, on the other hand, need almost constant attention.

I have witnessed incidents at church over the years with some of the children. A few days after one particularly violent episode, I had a conversation with the child’s father. I asked him how the child was and he told me that he wished he could get inside the child’s head to know what the child was thinking. I kept thinking about that because, as a songwriter and author, that’s what I do – think about things.

I do not have any insight into an autistic person’s state of mind. But, having stuttered all my life, I know what it’s like to live in one’s own head. And that’s what led me to write the song, Hello Out There. It can be found here.

Peace be with you.

 

 

 

 

 

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