Wordless Wednesday…almost

field of confusion

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During my quest for a Wordless image that would speak for itself, I took a second look at this particular photo captured yesterday afternoon.

I had a moment. A title to a specific song appeared…as if in a thought bubble hanging over my head. The kind I remember from 1960s Saturday morning cartoons.

But these days I’m not laughing.

You just might find…

V.J.’s Weekly Challenge #103: theme song

Let’s have a little fun this week, discovering our current theme song. Post a video, lyrics, or write your own.

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A “theme song” – let’s call it my pandemic theme song – has been looping through my mind ever since COVID-19 erupted in the United States back in March.

The chorus from You Can’t Always Get What You Want by (who else) The Rolling Stones popped into my head almost immediately.

It also happens to be embroidered on a large 14″ x 18″ patch of denim. Which is framed and hangs on the wall next to my desk where I write every day.

Whenever I look up, there it is in glorious shades of pink and purple. A good friend of mine from high school made it for me in 1972. She was kind of a hippy back then and is now a cloistered nun. A story I touched upon last year.

abby patch2

 

I mean, seriously, it does make perfect sense.  You can’t always get what you want…most of us learn that fairly early in life if we’re lucky…and I often feel comforted by this timeless bit of wisdom. The Stones immortalized it, but it is actually true…duh.

I try to keep this nugget of humble logic in mind…as I wake up each morning…open my eyes…and remember. It’s not a dream. The world is still under siege. We are still waiting for “normal.”

The Stones did a wonderful virtual Zoom rendition of this tune on April 18th, 2020 for the “One World: Together At Home” concert in support of the World Health Organization. How fascinating that – out of all the songs they’ve recorded – this one was chosen for such a monumental moment in history. It makes perfect sense to me.

I may desperately want to see my family and friends in person…but I am still grateful I am not stuck in a long line of cars waiting for food. Or worrying I may lose my home or business. The financial impact on my family of 2 is not nearly as severe as it is for so many others.

Even though the April 18th performance doesn’t include the opening verses sung by the London Bach Choir, I highly recommend it.
(Bonus: you’ll get to see Charlie Watts playing air drums)

 

You Can’t Always Get What You Want

I saw her today at the reception
A glass of wine in her hand
I knew she was gonna meet her connection
At her feet was her footloose man

You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
But if you try sometimes, well, you might find
You get what you need

And I went down to the demonstration
To get my fair share of abuse
Singing, “We’re gonna vent our frustration
If we don’t we’re gonna blow a fifty-amp fuse”

You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
But if you try sometimes, well, you just might find
You get what you need

I went down to the Chelsea drugstore
To get your prescription filled
I was standing in line with Mr. Jimmy
And man, did he look pretty ill
We decided that we would have a soda
My favorite flavor, cherry red
I sung my song to Mr. Jimmy
Yeah, and he said one word to me, and that was “dead”
I said to him

You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
But if you try sometimes you just might find
You get what you need

You get what you need, yeah, oh baby

I saw her today at the reception
In her glass was a bleeding man
She was practiced at the art of deception
Well, I could tell by her blood-stained hands

You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
But if you try sometimes you just might find
You just might find
You get what you need

You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
But if you try sometimes you just might find
You just might find
You get what you need, oh yeah

by, Keith Richards and Mick Jagger
Released in 1969 on the album Let It Bleed

Bits and Pieces of the Past

Inspired by V.J.’s Weekly Challenge #95: bits and pieces

SixWordSaturday

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ticket stubs

 

I saved these ticket stubs…scraps of paper…bits and pieces from my past. I found them tucked in a drawer, old jewelry boxes and a business card case. Ancient rubber bands barely held some together. I smiled as I arranged them for this photo.

Allow me to share a few ramblings…

I remember…seeing Whoopi – my comedy idol – and waiting in the theater’s back parking lot afterwards hoping to see her.

There was the night we saw Bruce Hornsby and his heartfelt tribute to Jerry Garcia who had died a few weeks earlier.

A concert I never thought I’d attend had been #1 on my bucket list for years: Barbra Streisand. Tied for #1: Carole King. And there was Bonnie – could never get enough of her. And Bruuuuce…you know who I mean. Amazing.

When we took the kids to see the one-of-a-kind Harlem Globetrotters – back in the days of the basketball and Chicago Bulls craziness that consumed our family.

When You’re A Jet….a local professional theater did this fabled Broadway musical justice beyond our expectations. Again, a favorite.

And…Writers! Anna. Elizabeth. Joyce. Sonia. Atul. Inspiring and captivating…they welcomed us all into their world for an hour that went by much too fast.

I shared most of these events with family and friends. In theaters and concert halls both large and small. In New Hampshire, Maine, Massachusetts and Washington, DC. Singing, laughing and can’t-help-but-get-out-of-my-seat dancing…ain’t too proud sweet darlin….

I attended a few of the writer’s talks alone and will admit there was no singing and dancing, but laughing…yes.

Unique memories of a time gone by.

As far as I know, all of these once packed venues are closed for the foreseeable future. I hope that someday we all have another chance to collect more bits and pieces like these.

 
This song has been going through my head ever since seeing V.J.’s prompt. So in the spirit of live concerts please enjoy…

 

Whispering Wind

Inspired by V.J.’s Weekly Challenge #82: whisper

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whisper sunset

 

Whispering wind came uninvited.

This lyric popped into my head the moment I saw V.J.’s challenge topic this week. And there it remained. No matter what I did.

The first line from a song almost 50 years old.

A song I discovered as a teenager.

But should I use it for this challenge? Surely there are other more relevant options…

I could write about the behind-my-back whispering I endured as an awkward too-tall glasses-wearing 12 year old trying to fit in with the cool kids. While pretending everything was fine. And holding back the tears.

Or, at home, how whispering meant something was off…not as it should be. Somehow…tilted. One more secret to swallow. Remember. Always on alert. My stomach in knots.

Don’t tell your sister. Don’t tell your grandparents. Don’t tell your father.

Just plain don’t tell. What will people say?

Or else.

There are no witnesses to a whisper.

So…whisper…not a comfortable topic to revisit. As it led to secrets and shaming and being left out. No need to relive that.

There it was again…whispering wind

Here’s the thing…I’ve finally learned to honor the flashing signs that appear in my head.

So here goes…

The song in question was written by Carole King and is included on her 1971 album “Music” – the album that followed my all time favorite “Tapestry.”

 

Song of Long Ago
Words and Music by Carole King

Whispering wind came uninvited
Looking for somewhere else to go
Here is a lamp I’ve left unlighted
Aren’t you someone I should know?

Memory’s flame is soon ignited
Lighting my lamp with amber glow
Quietly friends are reunited
Singing a song of long ago, la la la

Cry, cry for someone
Who just can’t be happy
And be glad you can feel enough to cry

Younger than always, time descended
Bringing me brand new seeds to sow
Now that they’ve been a long time planted
What must I do to help them grow?

If it had been as I intended
I wouldn’t have the peace I know
Loving the people I’ve befriended
And singing the song of long ago, la la la

As it began, so I will end it
Singing a song of long ago
Loving the people I’ve befriended
And singing the song of long, long, long ago.

I hadn’t listened carefully to Song of Long Ago in many years…until now.

What a difference – in perspective – a lifetime can make…in the listening.

Whispering wind…as relevant as ever.

By the way…Happy Birthday to Carole King.

She will be 78 years old this Sunday, February 9th.

Nostalgic Cookie Sing-Along

Inspired by:

Lens-Artists Challenge #75: Nostalgic

…I look forward to seeing the nostalgic moments that are most special to you. Past holidays, times with family and friends, travel moments, or just something that reminds you  fondly of days gone by – it’s your call. Give us a small peek into the things you’re nostalgic about.

V.J.’s Weekly Challenge #76: Music

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Get out the red and green sprinkles!
And the tiny chocolate chips!
Cookie sheets!
Cookie cutters!
Start the music!

It’s Time!

IMG_1598

When I was raising my children – and by the time each was around 2 years old – we made Christmas cookies together as a family. Simple cream cheese sugar cookies.

We used the same aluminum cookie cutters I used when I was a child.

Our tradition? I made the dough the day before so it was easier to roll out.
My daughter – and then my son – learned how to use a rolling pin and press a tree or bell shape into the flattened dough.

1992 t
Let the decorating begin!

Creativity was serious business.

The teenage years sparked unique decorating ideas such as the occasional anatomically correct gingerbread man. Ahem. All in good fun though…

Every year we were accompanied by the Sesame Street Christmas Sing-Along album pumping through the speakers (yes, we had speakers in the kitchen!)…and the clicking of the Canon camera.

My husband, I and the “kids” continued this annual family tradition for over 25 years…always accompanied by Big Bird, Cookie Monster (of course!) and the rest of the gang.

Cookies in the making. Oven warming. Four voices singing – the muppets’ lines memorized to perfection…

It’s that time of the year
When we all want to hear
A Christmas sing-along…

Or

Count, count, count — counting the days,
Count, count, count — counting the day…
I’m counting the days, ’til Christmas day is due…

(just a sample taste of this fabulous album – released in 1984 – just in time for our family).

A bit of nostalgia I never tire of revisiting.

1995 k t cookies
Cookies!
Decorated or about to frosted!

Both in pictures and in song.

Clouds

 

I knew I was saving this photograph for a reason.

One day in June – that time in late Spring when you notice the landscape has totally changed from brown & white to color – I looked up. And paused from snapping photos of leaved out trees, budding flowers and soft no-longer-crunchy green grass. To catch this…

Waves of clouds.

Kind of like the ocean in the sky.

clouds

 

Clouds also brings to mind Joni Mitchell…and my favorite song from her album Clouds, which was released 50 years ago in 1969.

Both Sides, Now is that song…

 

Inspired by Citysonnet’s photo a day challenge. Prompt for today: Clouds

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Any Topic

Inspired by Cee’s B&W Photo Challenge: Any Topic

 

When we downsized in 2016 one of the many things eliminated was more than half of our record collection. Vinyl records…LPs and 45’s. We sold some to a local antique dealer. We sold some at a garage sale. We gave some away. Most we don’t miss. Some we do.

We saved two cabinets’ worth. No way was I parting with my collection of Carole King records or the “Three Bs” Barbra, Bonnie and Bette. Or classic Original Movie and Broadway Cast Recordings…Hello Dolly, West Side Story, Porgy and Bess, Saturday Night Fever…to name just a few. My tattered 4 record set 97 WWDJ/TOP HITS made the cut. My husband and I combined our Beatles collections via negotiating sentimental value of each. My beer stained copies of Meet the Beatles and The Beatles’ Second Album won out. My collections of The Carpenters, Herman’s Hermits and The Moody Blues did not.


Fortunately we still own our original turntable from the 1970s. My musician husband has maintained it meticulously over the years, along with the receiver and multiple wires and jacks and whatever. Including a cassette deck. And a CD player. No wireless mp3 system for us!

He also alphabetized all our music. The records are organized first by genre and then by last name or group. We have a zillion CDs alphabetized the same way. Phew.

One of the two record cabinets sits under the window in the living room area of our condo. Never mind that I flashback to dorm life.

A reminder of when rock was young…and when we were young as well.

LPs
Record Albums – Cabinet #1
(D. Ackles to B. Springsteen)

 

[We are also well aware that this collection will be the only thing our daughter and son will probably fight over when we are long gone. I doubt they’ll wish I had saved Close to You or Days of Future Passed….so I can rest easy]