10,000 Hours of Something Else

Many, many years ago, before a time when the Toronto Blue Jays were back-to-back World Series champions, I spent a remarkable amount of time playing a tenor saxophone. The instrument was borrowed from the school I attended and, as one would expect, I played in the brass band with 49 fellow students. The saxophone was a wonderful horn with an attractive sound when one learned how to effectively play a reed instrument, and it was something that I wanted to excel at. There was band practice three times a week and, when there wasn't, the sax would be carried home or to a friend's place where it could be put to use for an hour or two before dinner.

There were no illusions of being the next Kenny G, though. While the act of playing music was incredibly enjoyable, it wasn't going to be a career. The last time I had a sax to my lips was in 1991, playing in the band for the graduating class of that year.

While I'm not keen on picking up the saxophone at this point in time, I have been seriously thinking about trying my hand at the acoustic guitar. This is thanks in part to Spotify, which has a seemingly endless supply of playlists dedicated to the instrument.

Classical Gas Sheet Music

A lot of the hobbies that I've invested time into lately have all involved using a computer at some point, be it photography, exoplanet exploration, podcasting1, reading, writing, chatting, sketching, learning, or coding. Everything seems to revolve around a screen and Qwerty keyboard at some point to accomplish a goal2. It would be really nice to do something else for a while, though. Ideally something that will take me away from the computer.

An acoustic guitar would certainly do this3. Just as with the sax, there would be no illusions of a career in music. The purpose would be to play some of my favourite songs and maybe jam with the family from time to time as they play one of the other instruments in our house. We currently have a piano, a violin, and a trumpet; all of which would sound nice with an accompanying guitar.

The only real challenge that I see is dedicating the time. Everything else can be solved with practice and perserverence.


  1. I'm still recording every so often, but rarely ever publishing.

  2. Baking is probably one of the few pastimes where I am not sitting in front of a computer at some point.

  3. As would a lot of other musical instruments, of course.