Five Things I Am Into Right Now, April 2015

kids-bike-16-inchYesterday, I got to have one of those dad moments. It is so cliche, it could be used in a TV commercial (and probably has been), but there is a reason for it. It is a great feeling.

I got to teach my son how to ride a bike.

We went to our local park that has a smooth cement trail around it. After a few falls and nervousness, he was up and going, and there I was huffing and puffing to try and keep up.

Yeah, I could go on about the symbolism of the kid finally being able to race away from the dad, leaving the early years behind, but I’m not in that frame of mind. If anything this has opened a whole new world of possibility for us. I look forward to taking him on different trails in our area, finding new bike paths to explore. In other words, my summer just got a lot more interesting.

What is also interesting is that most of what I mention below is all done while sitting down. My Fitbit would probably be disappointed by my list this month, actually. But I listen to it enough, so I think it is all fine. Continue reading

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My Wife Hates Steely Dan

So often when you speak to married couples you hear of the sacrifices that they have given for the sake of the marriage. Bad habits disappear, strange heirlooms from the past go into storage.

Luckily, for me my wife really married me for who I was and didn’t expect me to change…

Oh wait…

She did want one thing.

My wife hates the music of Steely Dan.

“Reelin’ in the Years”

I grew up on the music of Steely Dan. My dad loves this band, I can’t remember a time really when Countdown to Ecstasy or Pretzel Logic wasn’t playing while he was working in the lawn or around the house.

Over a decade ago I actually got him tickets to see the band live. And when he injured his leg, I gave him copies of their entire discography to help pass the time. They have always been a go-to possibility around my dad and presents… Other than Steely Dan and the work of Kurt Vonnegut, he is difficult to shop for, to be honest. Continue reading

The Nat King Cole Inside My Head

I am obsessed with The Beatles, I adore Belle and Sebastian, I’ve seen They Might Be Giants five times in concert, and I can’t stop playing the new Fiona Apple CD… but Nat King Cole is the musical comfort food for my soul.

I have read a few biographies about him over the years, and as amazing of a life he had, it’s always hard for me to connect him to his voice. Frankly, his voice is so engrained into my own life, it is hard to think that it once even belonged to someone else, as strangely as that sounds. I don’t feel his struggles against racism in his career and his growth from jazz pianist to just a singer fronting a band in a studio, lost in the business of just singing singles hoping for a hit, when I listen to his music.

I hear my own life in his voice, in his performing, making each recording I adore something akin to a special gift. Continue reading