Improvising Around the Flaked Notes

The brilliance of Miles Davis's playing wasn't that he was an amazing trumpet player (he was) but that he understood a fundamental principle of improvisation: if you flake a note, repeat that flake two more times and it becomes a choice rather than a mistake.

Life IS improvisation. Sure, we all have our scripts we adopt, our routines and our specific grinds of the day but we're all just making shit up as we go along. Like the cast of The Walking Dead without the zombies in our lives actually eating us.

Some flaked notes are Big Ones and it would be stupid to repeat. A failed attempt at Russian Roulette. That time you drank away your pain. Moving in with her after she punched you in the face. These are not the stumbles I'm talking about.

MOST flaked notes are just that—stumbles. Trips. A momentary moment of awkwardness. Slipping on some water at a dinner party and falling on your ass. Being a little too over the top with a romantic pursuit. Saying "fuck" at a Board Meeting. You know, flaked notes.

First, don't sweat these things. Anyone who claims to not make these sort of boner mistakes is lying to you and goes home and sits in his room in shame that he is a fraud.

Second, make it part of The Dance. Embrace it. Own it. Claim it. And incorporate it.

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