At the end of what was already a very long Sunday, we all piled into the car to grab some pizza and eat it in a park, enjoying what I am certain is the last sun we will see for months (I can’t help but see each sunny day as the last of it’s kind, but can you blame me?). The first five minutes of any car ride are loud – someone doesn’t want to come with us at all, someone is sitting in the worst seat ever, someone needs help buckling into her seat, and someone else refuses to help her, or “accidentally” pinches her while helping.
As soon as the car quieted down I closed my eyes. Peace.
And then I heard the first few notes of the piano intro to “Jungleland.” Could it be that while sorting through the endless titles of shitty music I download for the kids my iPod actually had the audacity to play one of my songs? I breath slowly, as if to actually inhale that delicious piano solo, which then gives way to that wonderful voice. Man, I love Springsteen.
And then I hear this from Efram:
“Wow. Who’s this? This guy has a terrible voice. This is awful.”
M cannot but chime in, in a low mumble: “I’ve been saying that for years.”
There is fire and pain in my voice. THIS IS BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN, WHICH SOME OF YOU ALREADY KNEW (M). YOU GUYS CAN SAY WHATEVER THE HELL YOU WANT ABOUT EACH OTHER, OR ME FOR THAT MATTER, BUT LEAVE BRUCE ALONE.
Which was the dumbest thing I could have possible said. Because now they all know I care. A lot. All sorts of nasty things are said about the first man I loved. The man who got married on my birthday, and made me fast on a day when I should have been eating cake (come on, you do things like that when you’re about 14.) M wouldn’t let me name any of the children Bruce, or even use it as a middle name, and they’ve all told me that any dog we get one day in the distant future will never be called Springsteen, but do they really need to knock him? On a Sunday night? When I’m already barely holding it together with gummy cola bottles and a series of deep breaths?
We picked up pizza. We went to the park. But I couldn’t look at any of them. When I saw that Bennett, who understands hero worship or at least should, sneaked onto my phone and posted a picture of Peyton Manning to this blog, I had to be physically removed from the house for their safety.
Come on people, some things are sacred. Aren’t they? Turns out that I had forgotten (forgive me Bruce, but it was a Sunday), but the Boss turned 63 yesterday. Wherever you are, wherever you may be, happy birthday Bruce. And don’t listen to Efram. His idea of a good time is a Ninjago marathon and an unlimited supply of dried mango.
Some people have no taste.