Sunday, February 06, 2011

So how have you been (and John Hiatt & Lyle Lovett)

Some random recent happenings. All of which could probably be streams of thought in and of themselves. But... you know.

Last Thursday Jane and I worked a booth for her place of employment and gave away trinkets at a Mad Ants D-league basketball game. I thought it was great fun. We had a table right inside the entrance into the arena - right behind the Mad Ants Dancers - and asked people to play "Plinko." You just drop a poker chip thing into a slot and it tells you what free gift you get. Even though we gave you whichever one you wanted. I love interacting with strangers like that. Then we stuck around and watched the game - which I enjoyed too. I could be a regular at something like that.

Friday I wasn't feeling so good, so we just went out for supper and came home.

Saturday morning was the first church council meeting of the new year. I was a little anxious because we had two new council members, but it was actually a pretty good meeting. I had hoped to keep it to an hour - because we didn't really have a lot to talk about - but it went an hour and a half.

I couldn't believe how much it snowed Saturday (yesterday). They were calling for less than an inch, and I swear we had about six inches - even though they said it was only four. But obviously they don't know very much about snow.

Son Isaac came home yesterday (Saturday) and we went to Drew Carrie's for supper and to see Annabanana. On the way, Isaac's borrowed vehicle started overheating. We stopped at Arby's and left the jeep and we went to Drew Carrie's in our Buick to try to find someone to fix it. I finally called Ken and we met his cousin and gave him the key and he said they'd take care of it. I think it was the water pump. But what do I know.

We had a nice supper, and a good time playing with Anna (although she kind of just sits there still; and seems to be more attached to women than men still - I think it's the lumps - but she's pretty darn cute nonetheless. She'll get over that women thing shortly, I bet).

Then Jane and I had tickets to see Lyle Lovett and John Hiatt at the Embassy Theater. It started at 8 pm, and we arrived about 8:10 and had plenty of time to get drinks, find our seats, and get settled, before they started. We were in section J, row J, seats 10 & 11. In other words, front row of the upper balcony, right in the center of the stage. I like those seats. And it was a really nice show. It was all acoustic, and they just took turns - one would tell a story and play a song, then the other would tell a story and play a song. They actually kind of asked one another a lot of questions and bantered back and forth. Until later on, then they would often just go right into songs. It was nice seeing two mature and comfortable road warriors doing what they were obviously born to do, and seeming to have a nice good time doing it. And they seemed to be a perfect match, because they played and sang completely different, but it went together so well back and forth.

There must obviously be something seriously wrong with me though, because I sat with tears running down my face for probably half the show. I often do that... at good shows anyway. And sometimes the songs were just the silliest thing. But music seems to have a way with my soul. I think it speaks into my heart or some such thing, and just really brings the emotion out of me. I felt silly, but at least it was dark so I doubt that anybody could really tell. It was nice.

Jane and I each got a phone call that we had to take during the show: nephew Tim and Ken.

There were actually several surreal moments during the show for me. Almost like out-of-body experiences, but they were not. I remember one point - it just seemed like everything went blank except the little circle of light that Lyle and John were playing in. They were both seated, both with guitars, and mics, and a table beside each with their drinks and harmonicas and whatnot... and it reminded me of all the times I sat in Studio One and listened to guitar players play. I used to go there every Saturday, and they were some of the best times of my life. Seriously. The owner used to always want me to hear songs he'd written. Sometimes he would play them in the showroom, or else he'd have me come into his office. He was good, and I used to love listening to him play. Or one of the kids that worked there was always wanting me to hear what they were working on. Or, sometimes I would grab a guitar off the wall and play it myself. I really miss that. It also reminded me of other times when I used to hang out with guitar players - like at the old gas station. I really, really miss that. I wish I could find some people like that to hang out with again.

Then for some reason I started thinking about some old friends I had started hanging out with right before I became a Christian. I don't know what it was... I think John was singing a song... and I was swept back into another time and place. They were the first people I ever knew that actually used heroin. And I'm kinda thankful to have got mixed up with them, because that's really kinda what got me seriously thinking about my life. I had a distinct choice to make, and it was at that point that I decided maybe I should see what exactly it was my wife did at this church on Sunday mornings. Because there wouldn't be any going back if I had stayed course. That's when I started attending church services, and got involved in a Sunday School class, and pretty soon a home group, and... one day eventually decided that I wanted to be a follower of Jesus. Boy am I glad I did that. The drug life is not at all what it's cracked up to be in the movies. It is not pretty in real life. Not at all. I shudder to even think back; so I don't very often. And I still don't know what made me go there during the middle of the concert last night, but it was definitely one of those moments, and I was feeling really good for where I am now and how God has worked in my life.

So, the show was over about 10:30, and I still couldn't decide if I liked John or Lyle better. I liked them both... actually, I loved their music. Just right. We took Drew Carrie's little Neon - and let Isaac take the Buick back to Anderson - and we headed from the center of the city out to our little nook on the prairie. The roads actually weren't too bad considering the amount of snow we'd gotten, and we were glad that Yoder Road had been plowed. I think there were actually two lanes even.

Now I need to head over to the church and shovel snow and make coffee and get things ready for our Sunday gathering. I'm kind of in one of those moods. Hard to describe. Like there's a lot happening all around in my head and I'm living just sitting here. And it's not all bad. My head usually tilts to the right. Annabanana tilts hers to the left. She's a sweetie.

I don't really care about the Super Bowl today. I don't know why. I'll probably watch it. Then kiss the sky.

Peace out, my friends; and in.