The greatest voice of the rock era- that’s a loaded topic! I am (NO surprise) a HUGE fan of classic rock. For ME, “classic rock” means from 1974-1983…give or take a year here and there! I grew up the baby of the family (I suppose that means I am STILL the baby of the family! Some people would heartily agree with that!), and so I “cut my teeth” musically on what my siblings and parents listened to. Because of that, I have an incredibly varied taste in music. My parents listened to Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass, Andy Williams, Perry Como, Julie Andrews, Jim Nabors, Frank Sinatra…like that. My siblings listened to The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Iron Butterfly, Strawberry Alarm Clock, Three Dog Night, Joni Mitchell…you get the idea. I knew the extended drum solo from In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida before I knew my ABC’s!
Today is the birthday of an angel…my wife! I have now spent 34 birthdays with this awesome woman. In fact, out FIRST date was on her 16th birthday! I was in the high school production of Oliver! and opening night was…her birthday! I had been trying to get up the nerve to ask her out, and that seemed like a rather low-risk date! (Looking back- asking a girl out on a first date to an event where she has to A. sit by herself and B. watch YOU…may NOT be the best choice…but it worked!) I sent roses to her house that afternoon, so that they had already arrived when I came to pick her up. (I know…smooth…right?!) After the show, I changed out of my costume, scrubbed off the makeup (ALSO not something you would normally flaunt to a new girl on the first date!) and we headed to the restaurant at the local Ramada Inn. I had called ahead and ordered a birthday cake. (Again…smooth…right?!) We ordered sauteed mushrooms and shared them while we listened to the musical stylings of Mike Zichovich. He had two…count them…TWO…electronic keyboards that did EVERYTHING. (You know, guitar, bass, drums, piano…all coming out of two keyboards.) He covered Billy Joel and the like, and we gazed longingly into each others eyes. (At least I did- hers might have been less about me and more about a bit of nausea over the karaoke-like music we were listening to!) After we finished our sauteed mushrooms, I had them bring the cake. As it came out, it became apparent to me, 16-year old boy that I was, that “cake” may be a bit of a misnomer! It was round, about 2″ tall, about 6″ across, and stale as the day is long!! (I know…NOT smooth…right?!) BUT…she blew out the one candle (SURELY they knew she was older than that…didn’t they?!), we had a few bites of stale cake, and the die was cast.
A few days ago, we had dinner…backwards! Dairy Queen was having a sale- buy one Blizzard and get a second one for just a few cents. I ran to pick up my youngest son from school, and as I was leaving the house, my wife suggested I pick 2 Blizzards up…that we could split between the three of us. I did…and we did. So we had tasty ice cream treats at 3:30PM, and then dinner about 6:30PM. So we did it backwards…ate the dessert and THEN the meal. (My mom would be appalled!) And may I say…my son LOVED it! (Speaking personally, the Georgia Mud Fudge Blizzard is awesome!)
A new Goodwill store opened in town recently. Well, it wasn’t so much a new store opening, as much as it was an old store relocating…but you get the picture! To be honest, we never really liked the old Goodwill store, but LOVE the local Salvation Army store. (I do all of my fine suit buying there- $7 for a suit- hard to beat!) So we decided to give the new Goodwill a try. While we were there, I though about the fact that I wanted a new lamp to sit on my desk at work. So I went to the “lamp section” and found one. Simple, relatively unassuming, and $4- hard to beat. BUT…does it work? (Once bitten, twice shy…and all that rot!) So I carried it over to an outlet and plugged it in. It did NOT come on. So…I looked for a switch (NOTHING gets past me!) to turn it on. As I was looking, my 9-year old son came over. “Whatcha doin’?” “Trying to turn this lamp on!” “What’s the problem?” “Can’t find the switch!” “Maybe it’s one of those ‘touch’ ones?!” He reached out, touched the metal shade, and VIOLA…the lamp came on! He’s a genius! (Me…not so much!) So I said, “Let ME try that!” I reached out and touched the shade…NOTHING! He touched it again, it got brighter. I touched it again…NOTHING! He touched it again, it got brighter. I touched it again…NOTHING! He touched it again, it went off. I touched it again…NOTHING! I felt frustrated, foolish…but $4 for a perfectly good lamp was hard to beat, so I went ahead and got it, thinking at least we could put it in HIS room!
When I first moved here, I was asked if I knew about Abbeyfield. Now, I AM a Beatles fan, so I knew about Abbey ROAD…but NOT Abbeyfield. Now…I do! Abbeyfield is a not-for-profit organization that is dedicated to making the lives of older people easier and more fulfilling. Abbeyfield helps people live independently by providing a range of services, all of which are linked to the local community.Each Abbeyfield society is guided by the beliefs that older people have an important role to play among their families, friends and their communities and that overcoming loneliness and insecurity can make all the difference to an older person’s quality of life. People have an essential part to play in helping older people within their community, and the Abbeyfield team of volunteers and professional staff offer practical support and companionship to residents within the comfort of their own community. Residents enjoy an assisted independent lifestyle free from the hassles of running a household and the concerns of dealing with loneliness. Abbeyfield is, in short, a residential living center for the elderly that is specifically and intentionally built to be directly linked to the community in which it exists. Folks can move from their homes into this environment, but stay IN their own community and continue to be a vital part of that community, attending their home church, shopping at their home grocery store, etc.
What do you call it when a wife or husband makes bad coffee? Grounds for divorce! What Star Wars character drinks too much coffee? Java the Hut! A man goes to the doctor, “Every time I drink my coffee, I get a stabbing pain in my right eye. What should I do?” The doctor replies, “Try taking the spoon out of the cup!”
OK, let me admit RIGHT up front- I’m 49 years old, I out of shape, and I carry a bit more weight than would be ideal for my body and age! Having said those things (grudgingly…I might add!), last Saturday I paid rather dearly for those cold, hard facts! I tried to be…you guessed it…a weekend warrior! I have been sedentary ALL winter- my only real exercise was shoveling snow…and that wasn’t all that much! So here we are- Spring has sprung…and a middle-aged man’s fancy turns to…the great outdoors!