I inherited my sense of play from my father. He always had his nose deep in the innards of old televisions, autos, cameras, or any technical gizmo he could find. Spread out nearby were the appropriate technical manuals and specialized tools needed for the job. He was a Merchant Marine engineer, but he and his brother had inherited their sense of play from their father. I guess it’s a family thing.
The example of my father influenced me, but my interests mostly followed personal preference. For me, play focused first around guitar and music, then woodcarving and videography. Years after my father died, the topic of this sort of entertainment came up in a conversation with my uncle Lenny: “Louis, you notice that Carreras’ always wind up making money on their hobbies and play interests, don’t you?” As I added up the various side businesses my father, my uncle, and I had had, I saw that he was right. But, it wasn’t as though we set out to do it that way. Somebody would eventually ask us to do something or make something, and wham – business.
Uncle Lenny said that it was the Spanish and Catalan blood. “You know there is a word in Spanish for it “aprovecharse” – to make good use of or to take advantage of what you have.” It’s what we’ve always done.
My oldest son was named for my father and my youngest after me. When something mechanical needs fixing, or assembly I call upon them. Those are not my strong suit. Our sense of play is like a waveform propagating through the generations.
A bit of advice if you are like the Carreras’: If your play is your business, you have to take care that the fun remains in the mix – or you might find yourself doing something you hate.