Sunday, September 30, 2007

Five Important Things I've Taught My Daughter-and Other Jazz

1) Doesn’t take a Weather Man to know which way the wind blows: The black rain clouds with streaks means it’s raining “over there.”

2) How to ride a bike. Bicycling magazine had a great training article on this and I taught Hailey to ride a bike, confidently, in only 15 minutes. Then, I taught her friend successfully. Now its something that Hailey loves to do. Her bike lives up here with me. We ride together whenever we get the chance. Hopefully it will be something that will continue to be as much a passion for her as it is for me.

3) Music appreciation. Whenever Hailey’s over, I have music playing. And most other times too. My first purchase after moving into this place was a stereo. I think my 2nd was a stereo cabinet. I’m fairly eclectic in my musical tastes; so she’s been exposed to everything and everyone from Johnny Cash, to Carmina Burana, Elvis Costello to, Elvis. And lots of Third Day, of course.

While my sister and I were kids, my mom always had a record going; opera, Harry Belafonte, all kinds of Broadway musicals, and a significant range of classical. How else would I come to love Carmina Burana? Now that my sis and I are adults, we are both very eclectic---and music plays a huge part in both of our lives. My hope is that by exposing Hailey to it now, she’ll grow in appreciation of it.

4) John Lee Hooker and jazz. “Listen; hear how that riff sounds a lot like CCR? Who do you think influenced them? (just guessing here)” I’m fightin a battle on this front. Hailey’s mom always says, “I don’t like jazz.” Don’t like jazz? May as well say you don’t like breathing air. So I am constantly pointing out to Hailey that there are a thousand jazz styles. And that its influence is gigantic.

Driving in the car one time, I exposed her to John Lee Hooker. Some of his lyrics, coupled with the music, are fairly base. But I kind of figure that if Hailey knows that I’m hot for Katie Fehlinger (“Katie Flinger”) ---and not because of her weather expertise----than she can probably handle her dad singing along with John Lee.

5) The best country songs are drinking songs. There’s no contesting it. Songs like, “Tequila Makes Her Clothes Fall Off,” “Its 5 O’clock Somewhere,” and “Ten Rounds with Jose Cuervo” are the best sing along songs.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

She Does Dishes, Holds My Hand, And Brings Me My Coffee

"I want an Oompa Loompa, and I want it now!" Any kind of maid, or servant, or something to help out with the chores would be great. And what if she made you coffee too? I mean, heck, I figure I spend roughly 18 hours a year making coffee at home. And I spend too much time doing the dishes. I hate doing the dishes. I hate washing them. I hate putting them away.

But what if there were something, someone, who could do your dishes, brew your coffee, bring it to you in your home office.......Add to that some hand holding when you need it; plus artificial intelligence.....Deep discussions over a cup-a-joe....Though it borders on the Twilight Zonish, I'm running out to the store to buy me one of these......

h/t Hot Air

A Thousand Dazzling Sunsets

I like to play. Currently though, life seems full of stressors; work, more work, attorney visits, realtor calls, paying bills, washing dishes....And in between that, I'm picking Hailey up from school, dropping Hailey off at school, doing homework with Hailey, hanging out with Hailey.

The other day found me with a strong urge to escape, to go play. Go on a bike ride, go experiment with my new digital camera, go hiking---go hiking with my new digital camera.

I have some friends who are in different seasons of life than I am; and this affords them the opportunity to get away more and play more. And I found myself feeling tied work; and to Hailey.

Then I got to thinking of how much fun I have hanging out with Hailey. The kid makes me laugh; brings a deep joy to my life. And I realized that I'd trade a thousand pictures of dazzling sunsets for all the time I hang out with my daughter.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Remembrance....Rich Mullins

"After hearing yourself night after night, it's hard to imagine that anything you'd have to say would be worth listening to."

"I don't think I really understood poverty at all until I met these kids---the poverty of those who go to bed hungry and the poverty of those who sleep with indifference. Wealth can't be defined in terms of what we have, but only in terms of how free we are to give and take."
I came across this memorial post to Rich Mullins today. Mainly, I say, "Amen." While there are a number of Christian individuals and groups that I listen to and like; there are only a few artists that I think have known the heart of God, re Exodus 33, " Then Moses said, " I pray You, show me Your glory!"

The two that have most influenced me and moved me through their music are Keith Green and Rich Mullins. Oddly enough, they both died early in life; Keith in a plane crash, and Rich in a car crash.

"No wonder we love these moments and want them to linger. But for now they can't, so we must let them go. They are the flicker of some holy flame, a twinkling of an eye wherein the dead come alive again. Remember then, thank the Lord for them, but move on into the next moment and be present in it. It is God's present to you."-Rich Mullins, from his essay, Momentary Pleasures.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Tangled Up in Blue-with apologies to Bob

Sunday, Hailey and I spent another day at the ‘Alluvials.’ At this local spa we have the opportunity to soak in (from the spa’s brochure) “Crystal clear water…rich in minerals….drawn from the earth at a steaming 140F then streamed into eight hot mineral pools ranging in temperature from 70F to 140F.”

The ‘Alluvials' have a significant history in our family. We’ve been visiting them since we first came out to the desert. They were the scene of one of our biggest fights (the beginning of the Ben Franklin House battles), there we learned of our favorite BBQ place, and throughout we’ve always encountered all types of interesting folks. Sunday’s adventure did not disappoint.

Unfortunately, the main thing that we learned on Sunday was that there are a lot of good reasons for folks to wear clothes. A lot of folks should just stay covered up. Period. Or wear one-pieces; or T-Shirts, or something large that doesn’t reveal secrets that should remain hidden.

Then there’s the crowd that doesn’t cover up because they want to show off their body art. Yes, I’m talkin tattoos. This time around we saw a co-ed with what Hailey and I originally thought was a design on her stomach done by Etch-A-Sketch. Hailey did a walk-by while the girl was dozing and discovered that it was a butterfly surrounded by a bunch of flowers. Then there was a young man with his name printed in flowing script; Antonio, above a full-back-sized picture of the Virgin Mary; and below that, his Mexican Surname. In case someone somehow missed that, on his front side, above his nipples, again in flowing script, read, “Tony.”

The last time we visited, we were treated to a spectacular show of tats also. Some local guys were having a party, and the pool was full of muscular young men sporting tattoos that read, “The City Named After A Desert Tree” or that bore the initials of same. Some of the guys had seriously gorgeous art on them; for example, full-colored portraits of family: wife, daughter and sons- on each forearm.

No restaurant tips from locals this time, no birthday parties from the locals, no fights, no major excitement. Just a good time swimming, relaxing and hanging out-which takes on quite a different meaning at the ‘Alluvials’.

Some are mathematicians
Some are carpenter's wives.
Don't know how it all got started,I don't know what they're doin' with their lives.
But me, I'm still on the road
Headin' for another joint,
We always did feel the same,
We just saw it from a different point of view,
Tangled up in blue.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Quote of the Month/ Thoughts on Journalling

I came across this one in an old journal:

"I have oft said that if a man makes decisions based upon truth, if he prays-then goes; it, whatever he has put his hand to the plough to do, is not a mistake."

Additionally, in 1990 in my journals I had a daily habit of listing 3 things that I was thankful for. Don't know why I stopped doing that. Interesting to see now the things that I listed then.

Things Not To Do While Blogging

Eat a hot, freshly toasted bagel dripping with peanut butter.