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Anything but Heavy Metal or Country
Ooh look out you rock and rollers
This FGF, I’m extremely excited to introduce another member of the TND extended family, this time Hen’s brother-in-law, Andy! In spite of — or perhaps because of? — my needling, Hen came in off the top rope a la Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka and converted yet another member of his family from TND fan to TND contributor! How fortunate we are to have such strong writers in our TND family; as I said to Hen recently, our featured guests are eating our lunch in terms of the quality of posts, and I couldn’t be happier!
I have never liked country music. When asked what type of music I listen to, my well-practiced answer has always been “anything but heavy metal or country.” I pronounce this as though stating an unabiding fact of the universe; it had always been the case and always would be. But a nap can be a powerful thing.
On a friend’s recent 40th birthday trip to “sleepaway camp for adults,” I found myself in need of a nap between afternoon and evening activities. An Adirondack chair on the bunk porch beckoned. I grabbed a Bluetooth speaker (someone should write a post on napping with music)1 and arranged myself comfortably. The rustic setting led me to choose a station based on Luke Combs’s current cover of Fast Car.2 I maintain that this initial selection was in keeping with my lifelong aversion to country music; the song was written and popularized by Tracy Chapman (folk/blues/rock) and Combs’s cover is currently in heavy rotation on Top 40 pop stations everywhere.
As I drifted into a light, but restorative sleep, and the station’s (country, it turns out!) playlist unfolded, the music worked a change in me. Chris Stapleton’s Tennessee Whiskey appealed to my interest in mixology. The sad sense of inevitability in Morgan Wallen’s Last Night pulled at my heartstrings and connected me to the all-too-human experience of lost romance. Then Jordan Davis’s Next Thing You Know (kind of a modern take on Harry Chapin’s Cat’s in the Cradle) gave me a moment of appreciation for life and all the important stuff.
When I woke from the nap, I was focused on this powerful memento mori, conscious of my own mortality – and my ability to change. But don’t get me started on heavy metal.
Ed.: Interesting grammatical choice here: consistent with the stated preferences in the Chicago Manual of Style, sure, but not with my preferences. As Hen will tell you, I’m the sheriff in these parts when it comes to grammar; having said that, I’ve always liked you and really enjoyed watching our daughters play together at a recent family function, so I’ll let you off with a warning…this time!