For those of us who have been Tapping in TSTO for more than half a decade, the concept of living in a “Tap Free Zone” is unthinkable! And yet, when it comes to other forms of tapping, there are those of us who have spent a lifetime seeking places to tap…away from those who despise the sound.
When I was growing up, I knew who these harbingers of “Anti-Tapping” were, and did my best to avoid them. But it was hard…
I grew up tapping…and banging…and pounding…and for someone who has “tapping in their soul,” avoiding the anti-tappers was far more difficult than it may seem.
As it turns out, “Anti-Tappers” may in fact be clinically incapable of liking tapping. And while I just thought my Mom, most of my teachers, and several friends and relatives simply hated my constant tapping, it turns out they may have actually had ” a condition.”
It wasn’t until the year 2000 (shortly after the madness of Y2k), that the condition (some would call it a disease) was proposed. And goodness…if it is deemed a true Psychiatric Condition…we HAVE to give the Anti-Tappers a bit of leeway in life. Right?
Or are we just enabling Anti-Tapping behavior? Don’t ask my wife… she claims to be a bona-fied sufferer of Misopohonia, the dread “Anti-Tapping” disease.
Don’t believe it’s real? Read on…
Here is the WIKI info on this horrible disease. (horrible for both the sufferer and the tapper) In short, it is described as “Misophonia, literally “hatred of sound”, and was proposed in 2000 as a condition in which negative emotions, thoughts, and physical reactions are triggered by specific sounds.”
Which sounds does my wife hate?
The list is long…but, the two main offenders in a life of 38 years of coping with me include, whistling, or tapping.
The whistling thing is no big deal. I can keep my whistling to when I am alone in the car. But, tapping alone in the car can get you arrested in some states.
The fact is, as a musician, who plays a wide variety of instruments, including drums and all sorts of other percussion instruments, I hear rhythm in almost everything. I have long ago realized that tapping on the steering wheel when a great song comes on is something that I can’t control. In almost any vehicle I drive, I figure out immediately what tones can be had from different parts of the wheel, and the casing around the wheel. And learning to “chair dance” while driving was a talent I honed over my almost 50 years of driving (much to the amusement of my children, and disdain of my wife).
But, it simply can’t happen for long, when Mrs. Miller is in the car.
She explains that as a grade school teacher, she hears noises, sounds, taps, and squeaks all day long. When she is on her own, she wants a “Tap Free Zone.” I get it. I really do. And, I do my best to appease her.
After all, I have seen how she gets when the neighbor uses the leaf blower, or even worse his chain saw. I have watched her hunt down a random rattle from the washing machine, or dryer, or close every window in the house when any road work is taking place within miles.
It’s just something that I have learned to live with.
So, when I met a “Professional Tapper” (Chafic Saad) at the wedding of my niece, and told him that I lived with an “Anti-Tapper” in a “Tap Free Zone,” he was appalled. He did that look that dogs do when you make a humming/whistling noise while holding your hand up. His head cocked…his eyes winced…and his body froze. The concept of a “No Tap Zone” was clearly inconceivable to him.
Once I found out that he and his beautiful and talented soul-mate, Kris, were both former members of the touring company of “STOMP!” I was like a street meth-maker meeting Walter White for the first time. (If you aren’t familiar with “Breaking Bad” look it up).
I turned into a complete “fan boy” trying to get the secrets of Stomp clapping out of him, or trying to lure him into an impromptu Stomp mini-clinic.
It didn’t take much.
As we were loading items into the car to be hauled up the mountain (the wedding was in Alaska at a ski lodge, on a former missile site, up 6 miles of dusty road), I started tapping jars as we were carrying them out. In True Tapper Form, he grabbed a few random items, and started Tapping…
As it turns out, he met his “Co-Tapper In Life” Krista Lee, while touring with “STOMP” and after receiving a “Stomp-Ending Injury” (due to over-zealous feet-strapped-to-garbage-cans-stomping), he and Krista moved to Austin, and formed a few ventures, including a video production company and another performing/teaching company that focuses on education through rhythm and motion. They make music, art, videos, and all sorts of other amazing creative things together.
Where can tapping take you besides world tours with “Stomp?” Apparently on trans-world journeys, shooting video for companies like Google, or producing “first time ever” co-mingling, cross-cultural, award-winning videos in Bali.
What drives these types of people? The need to create. In fact, they self-labeled their particular brand of humans, “Creatives.” And I admit to finally, after more than 60+ years, finding a label that made sense for myself. Creatives create…because they have to. Just like tappers.
As these folks have shown, when it comes to being creative, it’s not about the money or other tangible rewards, it’s the mere act of doing. Creating comes in so many forms, that it is important to understand that like every great piece of music, no part can be ruled out as less important than another.
Poly-rhythm is built with layer upon layer of seemingly disparate rhythms…that when put together, create a whole, far more amazing, complex and beautiful than the singular parts.
This older vid shows how many ways you can “play with your body” in public, and not get arrested!
I implore all of you “anti-tappers” out there (including you, Mrs. Miller), to do your best to put up with at least a degree of tapping noise in the world. There is no way to know if the tapper you are scolding, may be creating the next beat that makes it onto the stage, or as a backtrack to a viral video, or hit record.
Yes. You may have an affliction that can be labeled as a disease. But, I strongly believe that part of your “healing process” may be in learning to tap. How can you hate tapping, if YOU are doing the tapping???
Let’s face it. When it comes to tapping…the rhythm of the soul comes from a variety of places. But in the end…we are more than tappers…we are people. And without “creatives” and tappers, the world would be a far more boring place to be.