Archive for July 14th, 2010

Missing

Raoser last posted that she missed my blog.  That made me feel nice.  The truth is, I miss it too.  I have thought of at least a half dozen blog posts over the last week, but have not posted any of them.  By the time the idea (usually thought of on the bike ride to work or as I’m trying to fall asleep at night) came to my fingertips at the computer, it didn’t seem so relevant or interesting (I know, I set a low bar for this, so consider how bad the ideas must have been).  And today is probably no different but I feel like posting.  Interest be damned.

Music.  I grew up with my music.  I thought my house growing up was grand and extravagant, but I realize now that it was just nice and of pretty average size for an upper middle class family in Madison.  Maybe even undersized for that family.  Though it never felt small for me.  It had no garage, but it had a “music room.”  Actually, I always thought of it as a Music Room.  In the unfinished basement, my dad had crafted a semi-finished room that housed his serious stereo equipment (including four floor speakers), bookshelfs full of records, bookshelfs full of books and lots of stuff in lots of places.  It had an unused fireplace and an unfinished, but beamed-in, ceiling.  I can picture it as if I’m sitting here today.  It was my dad’s sanctuary.

My dad listens to music like it’s medicine.  Or, more specifially, like it’s Oxygen.  I’ve always had some admiration for that.  I realized recently that my interest in music waxes and wanes.  I rarely, if ever, come home and want to listen to music.  I’d rather watch television or read.  I don’t do well listening to music at work — lyrical or classical — because it distracts me.  I have trouble not thinking about the music, which makes it hard to concentrate on the task at hand. 

There have been times when I’ve been really into music.  I can point to certain times when I couldn’t get enough: (1) the Footloose soundtrack in fourth grade; (2) the Beatles in general in 8th grade; (3) everything Buddy Holly-like in high school; (4) the Dead/Phish/Dave Matthews in early college; (5) the Neil Young/Eric Clapton/Bob Dylan college years; (6) all things Tom Petty for decades; (7) Cowboy Junkies for a lifetime; (8) Neko Case forever.   When I hear a song I know and love, or a new (to me) song that catches me offguard, I’m right back there.  I’m interested, captivated and — frankly — nearly paralyzed by the sounds I hear.  Right now, I find myself missing that because I’m, well, waning at the moment.  When I listen to music I like, I become seriously emotionally involved.  Tears, laughter and involvement are the norm.  So, right now, when I feel like I’m juggling a bit too much, I’m not totally interested in involving myself in the emotional work that is music.

Is that bad?  Is it ok?  I don’t know.  I just know that that’s how I am.  I think that if I had an actual “commute” of any sort, I might return to music and I might be able to separate myself a bit more.  Or if I went back to running.  I might, then, be able to separate music from total emotional investment or, maybe even better, enjoy some music that doesn’t involve such a commitment.  But I don’t know. 

I know right now, though, that I miss music.  If that makes any sense. 


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