It was a hot summer day. Scott Gore, my best friend and fellow Technikal Difficulties bandmate, was scheduled to come over for our usual Friday practice. We met in my non-air-conditioned, heat-box of a garage. The garage seems almost hotter than a sauna during the summer, and it would not be unusual for our clothes to stick to our bodies. I brought my purple metallic guitar out,along with my effect pedals for the guitar, and began hooking up all of my equipment when a shadow appeared in the door. I looked up and noticed it was Scott. He was wearing his regular day attire; Nirvana t-shirt, along with black jean shorts, Airwalk tennis shoes, and a water bottle in his hand. Scott welcomed himself into the room and got his equipment ready. In only a matter of minutes, we were already sweating, and ready to begin our practice as usual.
Scott and I were awaiting the arrival of Jeremy and Michael, the other Technikal Difficulties band members. To pass time, we played a few songs on our guitars and went over songs that we just recently wrote. After about thirty minutes of waiting, it became apparent that Jeremy and Michael weren't going to attend that day's practice. We quickly grew bored.
I took my guitar from around my body and placed it securely on my guitar rack. "What should we do today?" I asked in frustration.
Scott thought for a moment, then replied, "Well, Jeremy and Michael don't look like they are showing up today." He paused once again, rubbed his hairy chin and thought out loud, "Do you want to write a song?"
"Not a bad idea, " I replied. "I've been working on something. How does this sound for an opening?" I picked up my guitar and slowly started to strum away.
Scott nodded his head in approval; I could tell that he enjoyed it. Only one question still remained. Scott asked, "What is it going to be about?"
I scratched the side of my head and looked up at the ceiling, hoping for answers. We tossed around ideas such as girls, relationships, rejection, and other ideas. Scott then had a rather interesting idea; his eyebrows raised as he said with enthusiasm, "How about we write a song about these past few years together in Technikal Difficulties? It would be a nice way to end the Technikal Difficulties experience."
I was excited to get the song underway, but I was a little sad because it made me think about Scott leaving for college in a few short months. I thought of all the times that we shared the stage together and wrote songs. I looked over at Scott, and asked, "How about we call it 3 ½ Years? It makes sense because that is the life span of Technikal Difficulties."
Scott and I agreed that the song's title was going to be "3 ½ Years." Scott pulled out a piece of paper out of his black, soft guitar case. I handed him a pen out of my pocket. Scott and I walked over to my dad's cluttered workbench and began the writing process, like we had done so many times in the past. We each sat quietly trying to think of things to write. After a few moments, Scott wrote down, "It's been three and one half years since we first came to. It's been three and one half years and now we are finally through."
He asked what I thought about it. I moved my elbow closer to the workbench and propped my head on my hand, wiping away the sweat from my forehead. I thought it over for a moment, and then replied, "It sounds really catchy. It would be a terrific chorus."
Scott and I continued on. After we had the chorus written, the rest of the song became easier. We started to spill our emotions onto the piece of paper in front of us. Everything we had endured along with our band mates was written on that piece of paper. A mixture of happiness and sadness overwhelmed me. I knew that this would be one of the last songs we would write together, but I wanted this occasion to be very special and unforgettable.
As we continued to write the song, the first verse started off, "We've been here for a long time, but now we are breaking away. Don't know what the futures hold, we're just living for today."
The second and third verses came along easier than the first. The only obstacle in our way was the bridge. We stared at the piece of paper, hoping that the words would write themselves. Hoping that it would help, I picked up my guitar and started to play the bridge. I played it over and over, hoping it would light a spark in Scott's creative mind, and it worked. I continued to play the bridge on my guitar and I watched as Scott wrote down, "Remember all the good times we had, memories last forever. The ups and downs that we went through, I'll never forget you."
I stopped playing my guitar and sat back. Scott and I stared at the lyrics and we each had a large grin on our faces. We couldn't believe how easily the lyrics came to us, but we were each happy with the outcome because they were from our souls.
Scott and I then got ready to play the finished song. We each picked up our guitars. Scott placed the lyrics onto a music stand. We each sat down, anxious and emotionally drained, to play "3 ½ Years" for the first time ever. I started to play the beginning of the song and Scott joined in. Scott began to sing. As we got into the chorus, Scott started to play a lower, rhythmic part while he started to sing the chorus lyrics. I played more of a lead part. I gently hit notes that gave "3 ½ Years" more of a soft and relaxing feel. When we came to the bridge, we knew we had the song down. Scott and I looked at each other and smiled because we knew that this was going to work.
We continued to concentrate while we were finishing up the song, but it was hard to do. My mind started to wander, thinking of when this would all be over with and Scott would be leaving, a moment that I was dreading. I tried my best to concentrate on finishing the song. We knew that all of our hard effort and our emotions had finally accomplished something we could always be happy with. Scott and I played the verse and chorus one more time to finish up the song. We added on the chorus, and Scott sang "Three and one half, three and one half, three and one half years." As he was singing the last part of the lyrics, I played a soft gentle part to make the song more complete. We played the last few chords, and the song finally came to an end.
In the past few hours, we had summarized all our feelings, emotions, and friendship into a four and a half minute song, and we couldn't have been happier. Everything Scott and I had ever wanted to say was included in "3 ½ Years". We knew it was the end, and "3 ½ Years" helped us accept that, and we realized just how lucky we were. I knew that after Scott left, I could always play "3 ½ Years" and remember all the good times we had, especially on this magical afternoon.
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