January 13th @ Free Times Café

Learning, we are often told, is a life-long endeavour, and I certainly agree. And with smart phones and Wikipedia we are able to keep learning all sorts of stuff, some of which might actually be correct.

If we want to be honest however, most of our learning, at least the important life lessons, happen when we’re younger. When we’re very young we learn things like not touching a hot stove or the converse, putting your tongue on a metal pole in the middle of winter is not a good idea (although I’m not sure why I needed to learn that one more than once – but by the third time, I got it down).

The other occasion when we learn a lot of practical life lessons is when we first leave home and live on our own for an extended period of time. I feel it necessary, in order for this missive to make any sense, to now share with you one of those life lessons. As I am a man of moderation, there is little in my past that I am particularly concerned about sharing. I am mindful however that, as the experts tell us, things you put out on email and the Internet tend to stick around for a long time and come back to bite you when you’re not expecting it. As well, these particular letters go out to a range of folks some of whom I have a professional rather than a personal relationship with, and with whom I am happy to share some aspects of my life but perhaps not others. So, given those parameters, I will share with you this true story and the lessons I derived from it.

When I was a kid I liked Fig Newton cookies (if you want to remind yourself about them here is a link – http://brands.nabisco.com/Newtons/) but we never really had them in the house. So one evening when I was at the store I bought myself a package of Fig Newtons. At the time the package had about two rows with about 20 or so cookies in each row. I went home, opened the pack and had a cookie, and then another, and then another, and in rather less time than I thought it would take, I had eaten the entire package of Fig Newtons. From this experience I derived two life lessons – one specific and one general. The specific lesson – don’t ever eat an entire package of Fig Newtons at one sitting. As this might seem to many people a self-evident lesson I will share the second, more general lesson- yes, you can have too much of a good thing.

This then takes me, as it must, to Gordon’s Acoustic Living Room. Is it possible, you might wonder, to have too much of the Living Room? Well, this month you will have an opportunity to find out. You see on Sunday January 13 (the second Sunday of the month rather than our usual third) we are having our monthly show at the Free Times Café (College and Major just west of Spadina) and as always it will start at 8 pm. there will be lots of great music, no cover and lots to eat and drink (although you have to pay for the food and drink).

And then, 12 days later, on January 25, the Living Room will return to the Free Times for our 10th!!!!! Annual Robbie Burns Day Show. In this case the show will start a bit later, probably around 9.30 (but you are advised to get there early, we get a big crowd for this), there will still be no cover, but there will be lots of bagpipes and other Scottish themed stuff, and in addition to the food and drink you can buy, there will be haggis and it will be free. (Was it only yesterday I stormed the barricades shouting “Free the haggis!” What was I thinking?)

So is that too much of a good thing. Only you can make that decision. All I know is don’t stick your tongue on a pole in the middle of winter, especially if you’re eating a Fig Newton.

Hope to see you once or twice this month.

– Jonathan

January 13th Set List
Set #1 Set #2
Mist Covered Mountains / Glasgow
Great Day
A Song For A Winter’s Night
P Stands For Paddy
Everybody Knows
The Wanderer
White Bird
Tell Her
Gringo In Belize
I’ve Been The One
Stop Stop Stop
Bus Stop / Runaway
Sooner Or Later
Tracks Of My Tears
Drifting Away
Butterfly Blues
Across The Border
Still A Part Of Me
Spanish Pipedream
I’ll Take The Blame
Volcanic Jig
Something About A Truck
My Home / Sheiling
It’s A Long Way To The Top