Confessions Of A No-Talent


by Brule Eagan

If you’re a regular reader of Central Standard Time, the chances are you have some measure of artistic talent. Certainly, many of the contributors to this blog do. Some are musicians, some are photographers, some sing, some dance, some act, some paint.

I am one of those who can do none of the above.

I love my piano, and I pick out a few melodies every now and then, but although I can tap my feet and count to four just fine, I can’t make the music the way some of my friends can.

Maybe it’s because I’m undisciplined; I just get to where I convince myself that I’ll never get this, and what’s the point, anyway, and I put the interest back on the shelf for a while.

I’ve occasionally wondered if my lack of stick-to-itiveness is to blame, or if I really am untalented.

After weighing the possibilities, I’ve come to the conclusion that the answer might be the latter, but it now occurs to me that it’s irrelevant.

It ain’t just me.

There only got to be one da Vinci. There only got to be one Mozart. There only got to be one Armstrong. Only one Astaire. Only one Nureyev, one Horowitz, one Ellington. Only one Spike Jones.

I suppose there are some struggling artists who can take some solace from that along with us no-talents.

I suspect there are some unheralded virtuosos that can’t take any satisfaction from it at all. Just ask Salieri.

So, I now reconcile myself to the fact that I’m not the only one out there.

That’s why there are more people sitting in front of a stage than there are on it. There are more visitors to galleries than there are artists. There are more people buying recordings than selling them.

That said, fully realizing that I’m one of the many who would like to be good at something, but am not, I can now take to the rooftop, throw my head back and say:

“Where the hell did I put that book of Hanon exercises?”




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