“Books are like seeds. They can lie dormant for centuries and then flower in the most unpromising soil.” (Carl Sagan); “Nothing ever dies on the Internet.” (anon.); “This is not your father’s Oldsmobile.” (Madison Ave. [m]adman). My posts amalgamate these three philosophical elements into one novel experience; they champion critical thinking, human dignity / equality, levelheaded / even-handed / liberty-based governance and solid environmental stewardship. C’mon in!
To brag in a blog? Ugh, that’s neither my style nor intent. I only risk being perceived that way to illustrate my point. That duly noted, let’s get this blog rollin’.
I’ve recently reached that contemplative stage in my life… i.e., have become keenly aware that the temporal road behind me is far longer than what lays ahead.
Lately, my mood can best be described as that “feeling of insignificance in our universe”. Well… that is until this morning when I clicked onto a thought provoking post authored by a talented, WordPress writer, whom I follow and who follows me.
To summarize her blog, she spoke of the Six Degrees of Separation… how, this past November, she had become (justifiably) thrilled by the realization she’d just met a person who had met rock ‘n’ roll legend, Paul McCartney… i.e., she’s One Degree of Separation from having met Sir Paul.
Had she blogged further on this subject, I’m certain she’d have also mentioned that, via Two, Three (and more) Degrees of Separation, she has also met the thousands of musicians and celebrities who McCartney has met ever since his early Beatles days.
This got me to thinking. Could lil’ ol’ lowly me ever make a similar claim?
Turns out I can. Eighteen long springs ago, after I had mailed a sample of my humorous writing to the NYC based, CBS TV program, Late Show with David Letterman… I wound up conversing with one of that talk show’s writers (he had actually phoned me). That means there’s One Degree of Separation from my having met Letterman… and Two Degrees of Separation from my having met the nearly 20,000 celebs and musicians who had appeared on Dave’s show during his 33 year long reign as Late Night /Late Show host.
And since 1 of Letterman’s 20,000 guests was Paul McCartney… well… this means I’ve also met my new blogging friend, whom I cannot thank enough.1 She helped remind me that, indirectly, humankind is all interconnected. Even though the saying, “What a small world” does come to mind, we are all still part of something much bigger and that does help me put my “feeling of insignificance” into a more proper perspective.
1Five Degrees of Separation… if I’ve calculated correctly.
12:52 am on May 29, 2017 Tags: Ada R. Habershon, Allman Brothers Band, Beginnings, Berry Oakley, blues ( 3 ), Butch Trucks, Charles H. Gabriel, country music ( 8 ), Dicky Betts, Duane Allman, Eat A Peach, Gregg Allman, Idlewild South, In Memory Of Elizabeth Reed, jazz ( 4 ), Johanny “Jaimoe” Johanson, Laid Back, Live At The Fillmore East, Melissa, Midnight Rider, music ( 201 ), Revival, Savannah Georgia, southern rock, Will The Circle Be Unbroken?
As stated on his official website… on Saturday, May 27, 2017, musician Gregg Allman, age 69, “passed away peacefully at his home in Savannah, Georgia.”
In 1969, Gregg and (brother) Duane Allman, along with Dicky Betts, Berry Oakley, Johanny “Jaimoe” Johanson and Butch Trucks had co-founded the Allman Brothers Band.
This ensemble’s unique sound had boasted a tasty blend of southern rock, blues, jazz and country music… the two main songwriters being G. Allman and Betts. And oh what amazing songs they had written! “Revival”, “In Memory Of Elizabeth Reed”, “Melissa” and “Midnight Rider” are just a few that instantly come to mind… that last listed tune featuring a lyrical sentiment, which every dedicated, touring musician can identify with…
“And the road goes on forever.”
Tragically, during the band’s early history, death had been no stranger to these men. Motorcycle accidents in 1971 and 1972 had claimed, respectively, the lives of both Gregg’s brother and Oakley.
Fast forwarding to the present, I spent the better part of yesterday, Sunday, giving a listen to the ABB’s considerable and durable discography, which could only confirm what I’ve known all along…
It matters not if you’re tracking through their toe tapping rock, a ballad of love lost or anything in between… these songs still sound as fresh and invigorating today as they had on their original release dates.
I also played back “Laid Back” Gregg’s 1973 solo album featuring the disc finale… his interpretation of “Will The Circle Be Unbroken?”… the 1907 Christian hymn originally penned by Ada R. Habershon and set to music by Charles H. Gabriel.
“Circle” having since lapsed into public domain, there has been no shortage of lyrical revisions… now inclusive of mine… which, of course is in memory of Gregg Allman…
Will The Circle Be Unbroken?
I was standing by my window,
On one cold and cloudy day.
When I saw that, hearse come rolling,
For to carry our brother away.
Chorus… Will the circle be unbroken?
By and by, Lord, by and by.
There’s a better, home a-waiting,
In the sky, Lord, in the sky.
I said to that undertaker,
Undertaker, please drive slow.
For this body, you are carrying.
Lord, I hate to see him go.
Oh, I followed, close behind him,
Tried to hold up, and be brave.
But I could not, hide my sorrow,
When they laid him in the grave.
I went back home, our world was lonesome,
Missed our brother, Gregg was gone.
Fans, friends, family, were all crying,
What a home so sad and lone.
We sang songs of, five past decades,
Rock and blues that made us strong.
Ones that brothers Gregg, Duane taught us,
Hear the angels sing along.
Chorus… Will the circle be unbroken
By and by, Lord, by and by.
There’s a better, home a-waiting,
In the sky, Lord, in the sky.
Perhaps our sorrow can lift just a bit? After all, in all likelihood, for Gregg Allman, “the road goes on forever” in the realm better known as eternity… he’s now reunited with loved ones and band mates who preceded him and… for we, who survive him… his vast, impressive body of work still lives on.
My outward bound, heartfelt condolences go to the family, friends and fans of Gregg Allman.
One of my fondest, most cherished moments (from my much younger days) centers on the elation I felt when I had held hands with a girl for the very first time. What had made everything so extra special was Cynthia and I had reached out to one another at the exact, same moment in time… leaving little doubt in our minds that our budding affection for one another was genuine and mutual.
Genuine and mutual. Within interpersonal relationships, it does not get much better than that. This is simply the way it is supposed to be. To bring everything up to date / up to speed, such feelings are what make the entire LGBTQ and Heterosexual world go round.
Even so, there’d appear to be a distinct deficit of genuine and mutual affection regarding one particular couple, Donald and his third wife, Melania.
While, at this juncture, I would not even hazard a guess as to what feelings she does (or does not) harbor for her husband… it is, indeed, revealing that, during their May 2017 Middle East sojourn, she has totally and repeatedly rebuffed his attempts to hold her hand in public.
Perhaps, this casts a different light upon their relationship? Might the reason for her continuing to reside in NYC rather than moving to DC transcend the official account… namely, they’re trying to prevent an interruption in their 11-year-old son Baron’s schooling?
Now, as for Donald’s feelings for his wife? First impressions would be that he has none to give and is a sexist pig, to boot. Folks, it’s not much of a stretch to say so… especially considering that infamous, 2005 Access Hollywood video, which exposed that deplorable, bus ride bull session… one where Donald boasted to Billy Bush how he abuses and objectifies women.
Only decorum prevents my providing a link to a transcript or the actual vid. But, for the benefit of the seven people out of seven billion who are still unfamiliar with the more graphic content, let’s just say that Donald’s concept of an “ideal” first contact with a woman involves touching… in his case… grabbing… which far, Far, FAR exceeds holding hands.
If such braggadocio is consistent to that control freak’s actual behavior, would it be going out on a limb to compare his concept of marriage to… oh… say… a business transaction with a “Stepford Wife” / “trophy wife”… a silent, business partner? Would we even be shocked to learn he may even be sweetening the deal, lucratively… i.e. provided wife number 3 agrees to the terms of their contract and not divorce him for another 4 to 8 years? After all, to be appealing to his Bible thumping, archconservative base, he must always appear to be a happily married, family man… right?
Under such circumstances, Melania would be living existing within a loveless, strained relationship and not wanting to hold hands with him would be a totally appropriate, consistent to her values reaction. Might there even be a few contractual terms (naturally, in fine print), which say she’s not obligated to engage in any public displays of affection?
Of course, she’d need to take other practicalities into account, too… public health safety issues for one. Look at it from her POV. Would you even want to hold his small hand when you have no idea of what, exactly, it may’ve been holding mere moments ago?