So today is Father’s Day… My folks are heading back home. J is packing for camp… and I am all twisted up, literally and metaphorically. I use that expression a lot… perhaps too much… But it is what it is and it says what it says and it gets the point across. I like it, especially in circumstances where something is happening to me literally, but is also the ideal way of describing my current, mental and yes, metaphorical condition.
I do not recall doing anything to throw my back out, but most recent mornings have me shifted over to one side… and trying to stretch it out and move it back is… how shall I say this gently… OOOOOOOUUUUUUUCCCCCCHHHHHHH!
I’m sure Clarence’s passing has something to do with it, as I have noticed that stress and emotional issues tend to mess with my back. I think I also need a new bed. I know I toss and turn, but waking up sore cannot be the sign of a good night’s sleep. What is most frustrating is that I have been working out at least three days a week, sometimes more… and doing a whole half hour of stretches and ab work ahead of time. The gut is still hanging on… smaller, but still there… but I can actually see stomach muscles underneath, waiting to come out and say hi… hoping someone will do their laundry on them… Okay, not quite a six-pack or a washboard, maybe two bottles and a pre-wash station.
I have been asked what I want to do today… I don’t know. I would actually like to watch the end of the US Open. Hoping McIlroy will hold on and not repeat his Master’s collapse. I might want to BBQ… And I know I want to listen to music. The thoughts of Clarence Clemons still weigh heavily on my heart, and June Gloom has a whole new meaning. I’m still waiting to find out if Max Weinberg is going to cancel tomorrow. He is speaking at the Grammy Museum and I am supposed to go. I was so looking forward to it, but I am guessing he will be traveling for the funeral, whenever that is going to be. We shall see.
In the meantime, I need something to keep me company today. I am off, alone, to the Farmers Market, so what would be something that will sit shotgun with me on that fairly short drive? I need something soothing and comforting… I need something that will wrap its arms around me and embrace me. Bruce later for sure, but for now… Hmmm… Off to the shelves… Actually it hit me before I even stepped into the room.
Neil Young – Harvest
How ironic. According to iTunes this album took him 18 months to complete because of a back injury. It was the best seller of 1972, and “Heart of Gold” would become his only #1 hit song, but the record was not a hit with the critics. After the Gold Rush is probably my favorite Young album, but this one hits me hard on songs like “Old Man” and of course the powerful and wrenching “The Needle and the Damage Done.” I love so much of his music and still love him even though he refuses to sign my C,S,N & Y So Far album… and this is with Graham Nash asking on my behalf!!! (And someone else in his inner circle, who shall remain nameless.)
I also wish people would go beyond the title of the fabulous “A Man Needs a Maid” and hear the song for what it really is… a fight between giving yourself up to love and living alone… not sexist… just real.
“It’s hard to make that change
When life and love
To give a love,
you gotta live a love.
To live a love,
you gotta be “part of”
When will I see you again?”
So this Neil is for my Dad and my brother, even though only one will listen… It’s for all of my friends who are dads… Hell, it’s for anyone who is a good dad and tries so hard to love and teach and guide and lead… and of course, it is for Clarence.
May the music take you to a better place. That is what you did for us here. And as I put on a record by the E Street Band, it is always you that I’ll hear. Peace and love.