“Rescue You and Rescue Me”

“Rescue You and Rescue Me”
Copyright Bootie Cothran

Sometimes I lie awake at night, wondering the same thing as you
What if this world’s just a dream that I’m having, or what if I’m dreaming that, too? Maybe the answer is out there, somewhere after this dance
Or maybe… it’s right here in front of our eyes?

What if we saw, what if we heard
What if our lives were as loud as our words
What if we loved and what if we tried to be?
Could we rescue you and rescue me?

If we were adrift on the ocean, do you think we could make it alive?
If we can’t steer together in the worst weather, how can we ever survive?
And if we sailed to the edge of the earth, threatening to swallow our craft
Couldn’t we find a good reason to turn it around?

What if we saw, what if we heard
What if our lives were as loud as our words
What if we loved and what if we tried to be?
Could we rescue you and rescue me?

Ohhh-oh, open our eyes, this is the Light!
Ohhh-oh, what a world it could be!

If only we saw, if only we heard
If only our lives are as loud as our words
If only we love, if only we try to be
Can we rescue you and rescue me?

Don’t Let Go

This song came out of my recent American Ninja Warrior adventure in Orlando. My favorite songs are the ones that end up writing themselves – they just sort of come out on their own, from somewhere inside, and this one was no different. I wasn’t trying to write a song at the time, I was just picking on my guitar one day in early summer and this groove started coming out, and then these lyrics started coming out, so I followed where it took me and this is what I ended up with.

It’s titled “Don’t Let Go”, and it offers a glimpse into what was going on in my mind as I was running the course, but it’s about more than just that. It’s about not letting go of our goals and dreams, being unafraid to fail, using those failures as motivation to overcome our obstacles, and about hanging onto whatever figurative “rope” you’re hanging onto in life for just a little longer.

100% of the proceeds of this song will go directly to support my ninja friend Kenneth Niemitalo and his wife, whose new baby girl is dealing with some expensive health issues, so please share this post, spend an easy dollar and let’s help a brother out!

This song is dedicated to the entire ninja community, and everyone out there who is reaching for their goal or hanging onto their rope. Don’t let go!


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Guitars, Bass, Vocals, Güira:  Bootie Cothran
Drums, Bongos:  Ryan Harper
Sound asst:  Will Dodson
Camera:  Peyton Mills, Richard Saad
Mt. Midoriyama Stage 4 Photo:  Jimmy Bogle
Additional video:  NBC

Better Yourself

Nature inspires me.  It is Life in action.  It is always striving, growing, and reaching, trying to do more.

There is a stand of mature white oaks and red oaks near my home, all growing tall and straight.  They grow like that because they are competing with each other for the sunlight, reaching to get through the shade of the other trees.  It is an obstacle they must overcome, or they won’t survive.  Some don’t.  But, interestingly, the very same acorn that produces that tall and straight tree, if it had taken root alone in an open field with no other trees around it, would not grow tall and straight.  It would grow shorter and rounder, spreading out to gather as much sun as it can.  It adapts to its environment and makes itself better.

When growing close together, the trees are in competition for the sunlight, and they must push and reach to get to the light.  Somehow they have that capacity to strive and try.  Somehow, they are able to change themselves, physically, to adapt to their obstacle.  However it happens, they are able to strive and make themselves better, and Nature, as a whole, is better off because of it.  It’s happening outside our doors and windows all the time, and we are a part of it, too.  All of Nature is striving and reaching right now, bettering itself.  Trees reaching for sunlight, vines reaching for a stronghold, animals pushing through adversity, grass creeping into the flower beds, callouses forming to protect against the struggle.  Life, facing constant obstacles and opportunities, grows, and betters itself through its struggles.  That’s pretty powerful, pretty creative, pretty miraculous.

What can I learn from that?  If Nature betters itself, and if I am a part of Nature, then it makes sense that I should strive to better myself, too.  I should reach for more than I think I can.  I should stretch just a little further than I did before.  I should strive to improve myself.  I should embrace the struggle of any obstacle, knowing that I grow better and stronger because of it.

Season 7 of American Ninja Warrior is coming up next summer, and I’ve just finished submitting my application.  I love what it represents:  Competition, relationships, fitness, the “bettering” of ourselves.   I could’ve given up, sat on the couch and resigned myself to being too old anymore, and no one would’ve blamed me.  Or I could try to do something more.  I could reach, strive, push, and better myself.
2014 Ropes_sm
Whatever your obstacle, do what Nature does.  The solution is to push, to strive, to reach and to try, to dig deep, to hang on just a little bit more, even though it’s a struggle, and know that you will grow stronger from that struggle.  Find something about yourself you can improve, and work toward it.  Grow, learn, teach yourself something new.  Better yourself!