You are currently browsing the monthly archive for December 2009.

One post. That’s all that you get 2009. You chewed us up, spit us out and we are piecing ourselves back together again hoping our souls have regenerative capabilities so we can feel whole again. I didn’t really post this year. Ever. Beyond brief moments of 140 character epiphanies (or drunken nuggets of clarity), 2009 left me, well, uninspired.

I can’t point to any one thing. There were a few painful significant events (the passing of our family matriarch), and a bunch of smaller items (my fantasy team won one game) that all just added up to … blah.

Don’t get me wrong, the year wasn’t a complete failure. I traveled to some amazing places. I experienced great success at work. I have great family. Great friends. There were many shiny moments, but none of them were redeeming enough to elevate 2009 to be polished for the mantel to sit next to 1996 or 2003. I will box this one up and store it away in the crawl space to float away the next time our basement floods.

I suppose this sense of melancholy can be attributed to the macro environment and general mood of the human race this year. But regardless, I am hereby moving on.

Where’s the box tape and the packing peanuts? I’ve got a New Year to celebrate.

Obviously I have a thing for goats. It all started on a trip to Jamaica in college. Our hotel had a mascot named Rasta Man Villa. He was a goat with dreadlocks in his beard. I spent several sunny days walking the shy little guy up and down the beach and sharing red stripe.
Immediately I returned to my college roommates (there were 7 of them) to hold a vote on whether we would adopt a pet goat. Goat lost out 4/3 but ever since I’ve had this strange bond with the goofy creatures.

Cut to 14 years later. I move to Texas and wouldn’t ya know it, there are goat farms everywhere if you venture outside the city a ways. As if that wasn’t enough, most of these goat farms have miniature donkeys to protect the goat herds from coyotes. I find these animals cute, pleasantly bitter and HI-larious all at the same time.
I had a dream fulfilled and got to visit one such farm with some friends this weekend. This may be sad, but it could very well have been the highlight of my 2009 (sorry bad date #7).
How can you not love a bearded goat and a wee donkey???

Billy

Jimmy (Wee Donkey)

I was enjoying a Christmas beer with my friend Jane and her husband, chatting about fun times to be had in 2010 and reminiscing about our Facebook-rekindled friendship when Jane whipped out this doozie…

“Now, this may just be the booze talking… but, Jen, I really want to tell you right now… that I love…booze.”

Well put, my friend, well put.

My song of the day is Calling Elvis by Dire Straits. Why? Because it reminds me of the best father in the world.

I was reading an old interview with Britt Daniel of Spoon about what his early musical influences were and it inspired me to reach back to my younger years to identify what it was that ignited my obsession with all things music.

I think I was seven the first time my father taught me to use the turntable. I found myself sitting on our family room floor surrounded by vinyl for four days. I resume that position every time I visit my parents now.

There are also specific songs that immediately thrust me into a trip down memory lane.  Fleetwood Mac’s Second Hand News, Steve Miller’s Abracadabra and anything from Sly and the Family Stone all had significant air time in the Cadmus house, by request of me and my sister. As I grew older I came to appreciate the entire library stored beneath the stereo in our wood paneled great room.

Then there was the day that dad brought home the speakers.

It was a perk that came with working for a record label. These speakers were taller than me. State of the art. It was my first introduction to what a sub woofer was. Mom hated them of course. They were not necessarily something easily blended in with the family room decor. But wow, when dad cranked it up, the house shook and I became acutely aware of my chest cavity.

Dad tends to go through phases of obsession with certain songs (I tend to take after him) and we quickly learned that Pam Tillis’ Put Yourself in My Place and Dire Straits’ Callin Elvis took advantage of everything those speakers had to offer. Hence, they were on repeat for a least a few weeks.

I must admit… Dad had a nasty habit of blaring those songs out at ungodly early hours (ok, it wasn’t that early, but I was a teen. I slept a lot.) I’d often roll down the stairs, disheveled and grumpy, prepared to gripe at my pops for literally blasting me out of bed (believe me, with these speakers even Pam Tillis could “blast” people). But the pure joy I could see on his face, sitting in his favorite spot on our 1983 sectional, perfectly situated within the musical cone the speakers created would stop me from doing anything to dampen his moment.

The speakers have gone to the graveyard of memories past, AKA my sister’s basement. Hell, now days a couple of 2 inch Bose puppies can recreate the magic. But I get it now. Life is stressful, crazy and sometimes maddening. Nothing let’s me remove myself for a moment like cranking it up to obnoxious levels, sitting in the middle of my couch and staring ahead imagining those hideous speakers in front of me while I think of nothing but the pounding in my chest and the peaceful smile on my father’s face.

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