Up and Running

By Gavin O’Neill. Gavin is the co-owner of Hello Boys also at The Idea Hatchery (aka The Row) at 1108 Woodland Street, Nashville, TN.

I’m up and running. My thoughts spin and creak as I stare back at the tracks that have passed me by, or that I’ve passed, I cannot decide yet. I sit and stare at the ideas that I’ve had, sprung to life around me. As my train of expressed thoughts and ideas tumbles and turns toward the finish line, due dates and new destination, new tracks are laid down before me. It’s unmarked land, not bruised or burdened by the mishaps or miracles constructed by my testy, tricky ideas. It’s all very serious you see. Constantly I’m badgered with questions of where all of this is going, how far do I really think I can run? In truth, somedays I’m running before I can get up, others, I’m up and never quite reach a pace to be proud enough of to call running, yet time and again it happens.

I could sit here and try to glue the leaves back on the trees but besides the sticky mess I’d have to take care of, the sky would mock me with mounds of snow, and so it goes until new buds form.

Some days I feel as though I’m asked to confess in a confidential circle my ailment, “Hi, my name is Gavin, and I’m up and running.” Others I’m the cool, collected entrepreneur, stirring my cocktail as I coyly claim my status of “up and running.” Despite both circumstances, sweat is inevitable. I’m running for God’s sake.

Ideas made into reality is a brand new experience in my twenty-two years. Some days i get the celebrate and share them with new people who praise my efforts and other days I protect and defend them like a mother in the wild. It’s the wilderness part I’m not so used to yet. I’ve never been one to camp, it seems like everyone just wakes up with bugs in their pants.

There are days my ideas are cherished and loved and seen by hundreds of people. There are also days when I sit alone and wait to see if anyone even realizes that I’m here, up and running. I’m ready … HELLLLLLO! ….? And still the marathon remains relentless.

Some days I’m here before we take off. Other days I hold up the whole show, and then there have been a few times I don’t even make the train. Yet I’m up, and ever more so, I’m running.

In the end (meaning today, not the end … does it end?), I’m proud. I come to a place where I can call the shots and make my own rules. I’m a big boy that gets up and runs the show with new ideas and dreams that I willingly (reluctantly) sign my name on. I’ve called it a train, a marathon, a burden and a blessing. I make no excuses (mostly true) for the crazy and wonderful predicament I’ve created. I want to look back and be able to say with a smile, “I got up, and I ran, no matter what.” If I strike the sweet note of success or I come out screaming, I’ll collect my lessons along the way. After all, it’s just clothes.

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