Summer Vacation

By JoCo June 17, 2009

My daughter just had her last day of school for the year, and I can’t understand why she’s not terribly sad about it. I’m sad about it, and I don’t even GO to preschool. There’s something about school that will always make me feel a little melancholy I guess – a school year is such a discrete thing, a big chunk of life behind you that will never come again. I can already imagine the hazy memory 08-09 will become for her, just a couple of snapshots really: that time they made macaroni necklaces, that friend she had who moved to another school, the one kid who was always peeing his pants. Obviously this is my baggage not hers, and it has a lot to do with having a child who’s growing up in front of my eyes, but I also think I’m identifying with the end of the school year because I’m taking something of a Summer vacation myself.

NO TOURING. That is the rule for the next couple of months. I really do enjoy playing for all of you, much more than I ever thought I would. But the airplanes and hotels and suitcases are a real drag, and it’s the closest thing to actual “work” I ever get in this ridiculous career. And it chops up my personal and professional life; I’m always either on a trip, getting ready for one, or recovering from one. So I’m going to defrag a little, recharge, waste some time, play guitar for no reason at all, mess around with various bits of hardware and software that I’ve purchased but never used, see what happens.

Merlin Mann gave a great talk at MaxFunCon about creativity, specifically about that pesky “getting started” part of it. It’s the thing I was trying to defeat when I started Thing a Week, and while I had it on the ropes for a while, it was just a temporary victory. I still struggle with it, and I suspect I always will. I can use the traveling as an excuse, but if it wasn’t traveling it would be groceries, or Xbox or whatever (Marble Blast Ultra, seriously, I am getting my ass kicked by a bunch of 13-year-olds, but I dig it). I can always find distractions that seem like higher priorities than making stuff. So part of my goal for this Summer is to take as much pressure off as I can and pry apart some space for doing just that. I’m not promising to write you a bunch of songs exactly, in fact I kind of have to keep my goals a little fuzzier than that in order to not frighten the muse away. I don’t know exactly where I’m going or what I’m working towards, and I forgive myself in advance for that because that’s sort of the point. I’m just hoping to have some fun making music in the privacy of my own head for a while. Maybe you can hear it when I’m done (whatever it turns out to be).

In the meantime, I am JoCo4Realz on Xbox Live and I will see you in Sprawl emmer effers!


Alex says

Thanks for being (and playing) at Maxfuncon. My wife and I had a blast.

Ray Merkler says

And I am ElLordHighBueno. Just. Saying. :)

It's been a long time since my fiancee and I saw you live. Seems like only yesterday we were manning your merch table at Milkboy. Rest up soon! Those days won't relive themselves!

Roberto says

I wish you a great summer vacation, JoCo. Rest well, exercise your creativity, and make sure you take the time to 0wn those 13-year olds. ;-)

BTW, when are you coming to Brazil? :-D

Carriep says

Have a great summer vacation! Wear lots of sunscreen (or avoid the sun), drink fruity drinks and all that jazz.

If you tweet to check in occasionally, even better. Just so we know you haven't faded away or anything like that.

ssrjazz says

Hey Joco, if you're up for some Gears of War, send me an invite on Xbox! :)

Scott says

Er. I think, while trying to search for your gamertag, I tried to add you as a friend.

I totally won't be mad at you if you ignore that. My gamertag is "sfrazer"

I'll probably be playing that stupid Magic:The Gathering game tonight. oof.

Chris says

Sent over a friend request, although I'm sure a ton of other people did as well, I'm Cmosfm.

Brett Glass says

Jon, I'd recommend that during your hiatus you take some time to go out and jam with folks. Pop into a filk convention, or a bluegrass jam, unannounced and just play. It's vital to the creative process.

Thomas says

Good luck with your break JoCo. Hopefully there'll be one or two gems that come through, but no pressure! Just make sure you beat the hell out of those 13 year olds.


Colleenky says

I can't think of anything pithy to say, so just enjoy your break. And, as Merlin said, it's OK to suck. :-)

Altruist says

No one is more deserving of a break than you! Enjoy your time off and don't rush it! I'm still enamored with Blue Sunny Day!

Darrell Maclaine says

Enjoy your break, you deserve it, little tour monkey.

And besides - Blue Sunny Day single and a live album. That's a pretty productive year for 99.9% of other musicians.

Justin says

Two (five) words: Ustream concert (from the beach).

Just sayin'.

Mike says

Ever seen BNL's Bathroom Sessions? I'm thinking a JoCo version would be awesome...... You wouldn't even have to leave the house!

Think about it.... :)

Bobby says

Sent a friend request. Bobbeh705, if you're up for some Red Faction, Halo, Team Fortress, or pretty much anything, I'm your man. :P

(And I may have to buy Marble Blast Ultra now.)

Luke M says

2 COOL 2 B 4 GOT 10

Have a great summer!

Beggargirl says

There goes my master plan of finding a way to get you to come play here in Vancouver BC on the weekend of the Zombie Walk sometime in August. :(

Have a great summer!

Tim Taylor says

Enjoy your summer holidays, but post your musings up here to keep us entertained if you will, I like all of your post Thing-a-week songs but they're very infrequent.

And come back to england in October :3c

manstraw says

This seems appropriate:


Jugglenaut says

Well if you don't mind me being a small muse to put an idea in your head, I've got two words for you: JoCo musical. Just sayin.

rozwarren says

Have fun! Play games! Goof off! Enjoy your family! Eat Doritos! Never mind us. We'll all still be here when you get back.

keebs says

I think it's safe to say we all appreciate how cool it is that you not only are taking such a break but that you explain it so beautifully and honestly. I applaud your efforts to give the muse a little spa time - she'll be able to give so much more once she's had some doritos, taken a few good naps and put cucumbers on her eyes for a while.

Jack says

Would he honestly grace us with a game or two on XBL? Like if it were our birthday, would he hypothetically rock some Halo 3 with us? I looked at his games library, not much to go from equalsign shift+D

Shane of Colchester says

VIVA VACATION! See you in September!

*scribbled in a yearbook with glitter pen*

Max says

Enjoy your summer & while I might have to skip the actual concert, I'll try to say hi at your booth at PAX.

Bob says



Brie says

Enjoy your downtime, JoCo. Hopefully the tatted and pierced denizens of Portland will get to see you in the autumn!

Dr. Perry Cox says

I have a feeling that there's going to be a Cleveland show a couple of weeks after I leave for school. Murphy's law, don't ya know.

Oh well, if there is, I'll find a way home. I'm sure the show will kick even more ass after you've had a summer of rest.

Bobby says

I saw you in Sprawl emmer effer! :D

Hope I wasn't too annoying with all the game joining, and the flamboyant rainbow ball. :P

Brand Eks says

At least I'll have my concert DVD to watch as I wait for you to come back to S.F.

Enjoy your vacation, JoCo... you deserve it. See you in the future!

Kayla Neff says

It's good that you're taking some time for yourself for the summer. Everyone deserves that every once in awhile. :)

I sent you a friend request (my GT is peeping kayla). Feel free to deny, but just think that if you do... we won't be able to shoot zombies in the head together. ;) (Actually, I don't own Left 4 Dead, so this point is sort of moot. Perhaps if you got Resident Evil 5 we could, however, haha.)

Enjoy your summer off, JoCo. You deserve it. :)

Charlie says

Wow. Your Gamer Tag... JON.... ILL SEE YOU ON THERE.... Around august :P Aint got my xbox 360 yet xD

Matt says

Dude you gamertag is All The Wontons. I wanna party with you!

Emma says

Have a great summer! Hope it's relaxing and inspiring. :)

Dan says

Have a great break! My Gamer tag is Nomad Hyena.

Ben says

I added you JoCo, and I see you have Rock Band 2. Interesting =P

In seriousness, have a great summer, I really enjoy your music and when are you coming to the UK? =P

Steve says

I am totally friending you on XBox Live. (Bukkethead)

We probably don't play the same games, but it'd still be awesome.

Enjoy your time off from touring... you've jolly well earned it!

Justin says

Sending you a request :)
name is applegoose

Danue says

Love your music; you should come to Singapore sometime.

Have a great summer!

Matthias says

That whole thing with holidays and all the pressure, espacially the part with always doing something more important like playing XBox remembert me of the talk of Jorge Cham about the power of procrastination. :) if you don't know him

Jack Sheehan says

No worries man, have a great summer and forget about touring. Though when you do return COME BACK TO IRELAND. We miss you.

Matthew Geer says

Congrats on making the front page on Wikipedia, at least via the "Portal" featured artical blurb. But hey, your there.

Kahnor Michael McLaughlin says

Its OK Jonathan, just one question though, Do you have a Steam account?

JoCo says

Kahnor: Nope, I'm on a mac.

Sherri says

So.....any new songs yet?

JoCo says

Sherri: none of your beeswax!

Adamoes says

Wow.. preschool. Holy random nostalgia, Batman. I just remembered one of the kids who would eat food off the ground even if it wasn't his. And another kid, who could actually read wicked well for his age, was picking his nose then started to bleed wildly all over everything. Preschool was a strange place.

Chad Eudy says

Nice to give us an update! I hope you enjoy the time you have with your kid and your lover over this summer! Although... I hope you go to Dragon'Con this year... just as a random jerkoff like the rest of us, that is! It'd be ashame to miss out on something so effing awesome! :D I finally pulled some money together and have plans on going as soon as I can find a car willing to take me... I hope my friends and I can pull this together.

Any who, happy summer, JoCo!

Bengt Edstam says

Have a nice summer ^^

Craig says

Couldn't you do one lil' show at J&R in lower Manhattan? I bought your concert DVD/CD there—not because it was cheaper, but because I wanted the experience of buying your CDs in a brick & mortar store. Also, Amazon couldn't deliver it for another week.

Craig says

Have a great summer!

Auburn says

Rest, be restful. Give your brain a break. Sit back, think about monkeys, and just chillll...

Let the muse breathe, and enjoy your vacation.

Mr.Nobody says

Hm. I don't have an Xbox360. I feel so left out now. :P

Xynrei says

JoCo should tell us his Steam account and in the case he doesn't have one make it and then tell us. >:D