A couple days ago I bought a $4.99 DVD called Classic Movie Musicals. In the main I am not a musical lover although I have one or two favorites.
This DVD had Fred Astaire on the cover, search or spotlights and great typography. That's what I was after for another design project.
I knew that no matter how many movies there were in that package that it would be mediocre reproduction in most likely, black and white. Not disappointed, it was. But while working I thought I would pop the first one in for background. "Stage Door Canteen " was a patriotic movie loaded with stars from stage, screen, and clubs. All entertaining stuff, decent but predictable background story (maybe not predictable that far back though). Good looking soldiers and USO types but during one of the entertainment interludes some famous guy (I couldn't understand his name, the audio was a little wonky) played Ave Maria which the troops loved, but when he did "The Flight of the Bumble Bee" they went totally bananas.
This guy "seemed" totally relaxed, and while there were no words, you could see that while he was playing his brain and fingers were on fire with perfect execution. It was the result of 10,000 hours of daily training, perfection. No need to look at sheet music for it was burned into his brain AND fingers. Every body part was doing its thing.
This is what top grandmasters are like when their game is on, which it has to be when facing another top GM. When one reads words by C.J.S. Purdy about top flight players, their practice, and their follow through let it be known this could happen to you too IF you are dedicated. Maybe you feel "over the hill" by now, but if you have kids or grand kids they aren't over the hill. Their mental reflexes are often just that, trained reflexes.
You know "thinking" doesn't really HURT the brain, it's what the brain wants, that mental exercise. "Think" about it. Promote chess.