On the Subject of Authenticity

In college I spent a semester on Martha's Vineyard in what was essentially a musicians' commune—an intensive program of writing, recording, rehearsing, and performing. While I was there, I did prep work in the kitchen to earn a little extra money.

The head cook was a guy named Bubbles—body like a sumo wrestler, mouth like a sailor, affable if the mood struck him, but ornery pretty much any other time. He gave everyone in the program nicknames. Mine was "Clonage." He said it was because I didn't have an authentic bone in my body.

Some days, I'm terrified he was right.

Most days, in fact.