Home > Uncategorized > Hello. How are you?

Hello. How are you?

I just got home and my head is spinning. I wanted to share this with somebody but it was late and I didn’t think anybody would understand. So I decided to share it with myself.

My daughter Kiera is 13 years old. She’s in 8th grade. Her grade school has a father/daughter dance every year. Tonight was our last. High school beckons. Growing up beckons. Life beckons. But she’s my baby. She’ll always be my baby. Nights like tonight are pretty special. I love her in ways that make love scary.

As a father watching my girls grow (I have two, ages 13 and 17) up has been both intensely satisfying and intensely sad. They were easier to protect as children. I still hover of course, but at a distance. They’ve begun to chart their own course, and have become extraordinary young women. I have to trust their navigational skill, and hope that me being slightly fucked up hasn’t rubbed off on them. Thus far they seem untainted.

Fathers don’t dance of course….so the night is comically misnamed. The DJ plays a handful of slow songs and the girls dutifully wander off to find Dad and drag our sorry asses onto the dance floor. It’s charming really. Watching the fathers…..I saw 100 other guys worn down like a used pencil….just like me. But with a light in our eyes when our girls were close. We stood around in pairs and and threesomes and talked about how our wives would say “no” and we’d always melt and whisper and say “yes”. Show me a man with a daughter and I’ll show you a man who can be rolled like a drunk in an alley.

It was getting late. The dance was nearly over. And then the DJ fired up Adele’s song “Hello”. That’s when the magic started.

It’s a great song, so that helps.But you’ve never heard or seen it like this. Perhaps 100 girls. Ages 6 to 13. Grouped together in a bunch….like a rugby scrum. Singing every word. Dancing to every word. Jumping and swaying and holding onto each other for dear life. Their inhibitions were gone. For 4 minutes they became a single entity. I was a wallflower for all of it, which is what I was born to be. I kept thinking…”I should video this”…..but I never did because I would have had to take my eyes off them for a few moments to do so. I wish I could show it to you but I can’t. All that’s left is my fumbling around late at night trying to describe what it was like. When I say that I can’t remember the last time music has affected me this way, I’m telling you the truth and kinda wishing that I wasn’t. Because it seems crazy. It sounds crazy. These were just kids. Singing a pop song.

But during these 4 minutes they were thinking about what they’d been through. And what was upcoming. They were thinking that things weren’t always going to be like this. Friends were going to fall in and fall out of their lives, seemingly on a whim, and moments such as these needed to be savored…..to be put in a choke hold….to be lubricated in tears born from laughter and from sadness.

Jesus H Christ. Calm down Pops!

I’ll be the first to admit that most of my fellow Dads are probably in bed now, giving no more thought to Adele’s song than they are to the fact that the dance ran out of ice for the 2 liter Pepsi bottles. Who the hell runs out of ice?

But that’s ok. Since my early 20s I’ve attacked life with not much more than a handful of chords, a beat up Gibson jumbo, and a yellow legal pad. I feel eminently qualified to wax poetic on situations that others find no poetry in.

So it’s left to me to describe how the earth tilted on its axis this evening…and how yet again music proved to me that it has more power than anything I know of. And that includes prayer. It’s the only thing I know of that is incapable of being divisive. It’s the only magic that doesn’t require an explanation. Because there isn’t one. Music pulls rabbits out of hats and everybody says…”yea…ok….makes sense.”

It’s the only thing left that leads me to believe that maybe…..just maybe….there is a higher power. And that being….whatever he or she or it may be….sits at a piano or stands with a low-strung Strat, and beckons us together.

The better angels of our nature. They are the ones who sing.

In a bit..

–tf

 

 

 

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