Disclaimer: I know everyone (myself included) may not be a fan of this guy, but DO NOT turn this political. It has nothing to do with politics and everything to do with inspiration. I know this is treading very close to the line, so if the mods decide it needs to be nuked, so be it. But we can keep it clear of the no-fly zone!
Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas just gave a speech at the college my son attends. He didn't go to the speech (that would have taken time away from his Yugio cards...), but it was covered in the papers, and there was a quote that I found really cool. He said...
"You do well to do good."
I thought it was a really cool and important message to send to a younger generation. I took it to mean that the impetus shouldn't be greed, but to get into a position where you can do something beneficial.
It also made me think about what I'd like to do at some point in the future - I'd like to work somewhere where I can help bring joy and beauty into the world. Not necessarily just make one more buck for somebody. It's one of the reasons I'm envious of everyone who works at PRS - yeah, it's a business, and yeah, you have to make money. But the end product is really joy, whether the consumer is creating it or receiving it. There are a lot worse things someone can do.
It also reminded me of something that really kickstarted that line of thinking in me - when my wife was laid off, she interviewed at a place that makes breathing apparatus for people with sleep apnea and other conditions (can't remember the details). She was really impressed and said to one of the people she talked to, "You guys must feel really good about what you do." This woman told her, "It's an incredible feeling to have someone come in and thank you for helping keep them or a loved one alive." Which reminded me about Paul's comment about guitars being legal Oxycontin. It must feel great to see someone using an instrument you had some part - however big or small - in creating to do something like Davy Knowles' solo in "Imagine" at Experience a couple years ago, or David Grissom's songs or the incredibleness Tony McManus creates.
I mean, sure, they probably have to take some of the blame for what I do, too...