Memories of a Storyteller

Memories of a Storyteller

A Story by Jared Fellows

My origin of becoming a storyteller.

My father is a practical man who likes to accomplish tasks in an efficient, but well-paced manner. He is also fluent in the language of sarcasm and uses it effectively, which causes a great deal of laughs. He is one of the most responsible people on the face of the planet, taking a lot of the blame for people’s actions. I am in no way adept at sarcasm, efficiency, nor very responsible. I am the dying voice inside him, yearning for a youthful thrill ride one more time into the deep, dark cauldron of blues, country, sex, alcohol, and drugs that produces the always charming world of rock n’ roll.
    Bach, Beethoven, and Brahms appealed my father’s ears. He was a pianist too, and a fair one I might add. Rock n’ roll was never introduced to him so he never had a chance to hear it until the cowbell on “Honky Tonk Woman” cruised through the radio speakers in his sophomore year in high school. My whole life suddenly changed in three minutes because of The Rolling Stones.
    He dropped the piano and took up air guitar. He would gather a bunch of friends, blast the radio, and air guitar, drum, or sing for hours. He always told me that it was a riot. They would order hundreds of dollars worth of pizza and sodas so they could jam. Grandma always complained about the noise they caused. When a Stones song came on he would jump up on the table and start playing their solos. They always closed with “Honky Tonk Woman”, and it was their best performance. Everyone would play the drums clapping their hands and stomping their feet. They would appoint a singer and everyone else would yell out the melody of the guitar.
    “It was one of the neatest things you could ever see in your life, I can promise you that,” he’d say. My father held the most important job: the cowbell. With that cowbell, he drove the whole song forward to the very end. With the end of the song, everyone dispersed and my father was left alone to his own thoughts.
    After a while, my father stopped hosting these “air sessions”. I always wondered what he thought of when he looked around the barren basement where they all jumped about in the air while their music was produced for them by the radio. I always wondered what happened to that cowbell.
    Thirty years later, he’s driving me to my drum lessons. At the time, I also had an ear for classical music. I loved the deep resonating tone of the cellos and the high pitches of the violin. I absolutely hated drumming. It was an ugly, in-your-face, pounding that was uncontrollable. I was an uncoordinated 6 year old who could barely hold the sticks around my hand. I had no sense of rhythm, dynamics, anything that a normal human should have. Only one thing kept me playing the drums, only one thing. My father always said, “Someday you’ll say ‘Man I wish I could play that song....oh wait! I already can!’ Trust me, it’s better than strumming through air.”
    I soon listened to the song “Give Me Novocaine” by Green Day. This was a revelation to me. I instantly understood what my dad meant. I yearned to play that song so badly, but I didn’t know how to. My teacher eventually taught it to me, but when he did, it was the greatest feeling in the world. I felt like I’ve done something important for the first time as well as boosting my confidence and feeling of competence. When I performed it in front of my dad, he smiled to himself and walked away.
    Even though Green Day became one of my favorite all time, one person alone topped them: Jack White. He is my favorite musician and I try my best to emulate his style and approach to music as much as I can. When he goes on stage, he is usually dressed in red and white and sometimes black. One day, I decided I wanted a pair of red Converse, just to feel more like him. I went out, bought the Converse, and immediately loved them. I wore them around everywhere until my mother put it to a screeching halt.
    She forbade me to wear the shoes. I asked her why. “Darling, people may mistake you for a Blud.” I was blown away. Has she seen a Blud? They are covered up and down with red. I am just wearing red Converse.
    “What’s the harm?” I asked.
    She threw up her hands, rolled her eyes, and said, “You’re just like Butch.”
    My Uncle Butch is a classical musician and is a huge fan of Richard Wagner. Butch wants to become just like him since he was a little boy. Richard Wagner wears a green beret and Butch decided to wear a green beret one day to be like his hero. He started wearing it everywhere, but then my grandpa put an end to it. My Uncle Butch got so mad because he didn’t understand why. He thought that he was just representing Richard Wagner. My grandpa said, “No one out there is going to think a black male is wearing a green beret to honor Richard Wagner.” However, Butch did not listen to him. The next day, he snuck out with the green beret and was mugged two blocks away from his house. I have stopped wearing the shoes out in public more for her sake than mine, but I still learned my lesson.
    My mother also likes to tell a lot of stories. I always looked forward to a story every night. She would come in, tell me a story, and then leave. However, she never permanently leaves. She’ll come back, tell me a little more information about the story or something else and then leave, but then she’d come back again and again. I never minded her doing that, except that is also how she acts when she’s mad at me. However, the stories always fascinated me. I felt like I was experiencing everything the character went through without actually enduring the conflicts.
    I call my mother a story-teller. Story-tellers perform and sell their stories to the audience as real events. Story-tellers immerse the audience into their world where everything he or she says is fact. Story-tellers scare you, make you laugh, make you cry.
    The difference between writers and storytellers is that storytellers leave their mark for only a few decades, maybe a century, while writers leave a mark for eternity. Sometimes, storytellers are forgotten in time because the story changes and people forget eventually. Books do not. We have thousands of years old texts. So I became a writer, so that people could know my name all over the world forever.
    For a while, I surrounded myself with books. I was shy and kept my nose buried in a book at all times. I hardly had any friends and I would only talk to people who approached me. One day, my mother came along, put my book down, and said “Somethings are better left said.” She walked away and I was left staring at the front cover of my book. In big bold letters it said “a novel” and I lost all interest in the book right then and there.    At that exact moment, I became a story-teller.
    I am merely a person who bends the truth to the nth degree.

© 2009 Jared Fellows

Author's Note

Jared Fellows
There might be a few grammatical mistakes, but overall, I think it's clean. At the very end I discuss about how I became a storyteller, but this also focuses on my father and my uncle.

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Added on December 23, 2009
Last Updated on December 23, 2009


Jared Fellows
Jared Fellows

Los Angeles, CA

my name is Pockets, and I am your storyteller. Why a storyteller instead of a writer? When Satan has dragged me to his home because of my passion for the truth, I will be a writer. When logic i.. more..