Last October, our friends at From the Hip Photo hosted a small event at Fort Greene, this cool, funky little place in Globeville, and invited The Narrators to share a few stories. The theme of the evening was “Punk’s Not Dead?”
The stage was just the corner of a little concrete-walled room with streamers on the walls. It was part dungeon, part homecoming dance. The audience was tiny compared to our regular monthly shows. The acoustics—as you’ll hear in a minute—were terrible for recording. The stories were all fantastic. That tiny crowd, with their cheers echoing off the walls, sounded enormous. The connection and camaraderie were palpable.
But after the show, I decided that the quality of the audio was too poor for the podcast, so left the file sitting in a folder on my computer.
But, you know what? Fuck quality. As my co-host Robert said to me recently, sometimes quality can be a tool of oppression. Socially imposed standards of what’s good enough or professional enough can sometimes hold back important voices from being heard—or bend those voices simply to please others. At The Narrators, we don’t screen our storytellers or edit their stories not because we want to produce a bad show, but because we believe their stories deserve to be heard in their own voice, without external pressure—and that is the benchmark of a good true story. Maybe we’re getting lucky every month, but after almost seven years and over one-thousand stories shared, it seems that our hypothesis is correct.
This is especially relevant to our current state of affairs, because there are a lot of folks taking action right now, and it’s disheartening to see good people arguing about the right way to protest, the right way to make a difference, the best way to effect change. If you’re a people-pleaser, it’s paralyzing, and can make you sick worrying about what’s good enough. Just get out there, and do something. Tell your story, share your heart, and stop worrying about going big, about changing the entire world in a day. Do a little something, then do a little something more. You are good enough, in your own tiny way.
Today’s story comes from Jim Norris. Jim is a longstanding member of the Denver music scene, founder of 3 Kings Tavern, and owner of Mutiny Information Cafe, one of Denver’s most important cultural institutions disguised as a used bookstore.
We still have a few screenprint posters left but they’re going quickly, so stop by one of our live shows to get one of your own. And, if you’re a fan of this podcast but live outside of Denver or San Diego, please email us if you’d like to buy a poster too—we’ll find a way to get it to you. We have a handful of special shows in the works and our 7th anniversary in Denver is next month, so please visit our Facebook page or here on our website to stay up to date.