A New Year Comes

Some things will never change, yet change is inevitable.

A paradox?

Perhaps not.

Time will keep on passing. Tomorrow night is proof of that as we see another new year ushered in with celebrations, parties, and merriment. That change, the one which the passage of time causes, is inevitable.

Yet still human beings continue to hate other human beings for a myriad of reasons. Wars are continually being fought, and innocent people continue to die.

The self righteous continue to congratulate themselves on always being right, and bristle with anger if challenged on their opinions.

Those things never change, and never will as long as humanity inhabits the earth.

A new year comes. It will be here soon, and there will be many, many changes before we see the earth circle the sun again.

In the meantime, let us at least try and mitigate and minimize those bad things which are going to stay the same. Those things which hurt and dehumanize all of us.

Seeking the Light

There has been very little light lately. Short days with gray filtered sunshine. Since we humans are creatures of light just like every other living thing, it gets a little rough on the spirit. I can understand why some mammals choose to hibernate. I wish I could do the same sometimes. Winter has always affected me this way.

After Christmas and New Years are over and done, I’m ready for spring and longer days. I’m ready for green grass that smells as sweet as honey. I’m ready for some different birds than the little sparrows who camp out in the woods behind our house. I like them too, and the cardinals. But spring brings so many different species to the bird feeder.

I know I shouldn’t wish away time. There is precious little of it accorded to us as residents of the Earth. Mine grows short. We should use it all wisely, no matter the season.

As we go into New Year’s Eve tomorrow night, I know there will be a lot of “resolutions” being made. The only one I’m going to make is to resolve to seek the light, no matter where it may be, no matter if it be physical or spiritual.

Seek the light, and I believe that only good can result.

The Passing of Many Things

I told one of my friends tonight that a lot of things are passing away, and it’s not just people.

Common decency has become archaic. It almost seems like it was left behind somewhere in the late twentieth century. Honor too. How many people do you know that you’d trust to honor their word, based on a handshake. (Or an elbow bump)

Humility…it has almost perished from malnourishment, and sympathy has taken a big hit. People are becoming numb to death and sickness and their “prayers for you” and praying hand emogees ring hollow.

Every night in my mind, I walk across a long barren landscape towards an oasis of love and light. I have not reached it yet, because I fall to sleep still walking, with salvation off in the distance. Still trudging along with atonement on the horizon.

Maybe one night I’ll make it there.

Being Sinatra

I was just listening to Frank Sinatra the other night. That man could really sing.I never really listened to Sinatra a lot before September of 1968. Before that time, I was an Elvis fan first. I like some other rockers too. Jerry Lee Lewis was another. I liked a lot of the other crooners besides Sinatra earlier on in my life too. Dean Martin, Bing Crosby, Perry Como and Andy Williams. I sang “White Christmas” every year at school from 1964 through 1967. I could do “Everybody Loves Somebody” and sound just like Dean Martin, I’ll guarantee it. Paula and I went on our one and only cruise back in 2011, and I went to nightly Karaoke on the ship and sang that song. The rest of the cruise, I had people coming up to me in the dining room and saying….”There’s ol’ Dino” Yep, I do a pretty good imitation of him. But Sinatra? I could never imitate him very well. I didn’t do it in High School because I had never listened to one of his albums before. Oh, I had heard him on the radio of course. “Strangers in the Night” was a hit song during 1966. It hit number 1 on the pop charts that year. His daughter also had a hit with “These Boots Were Made for Walking” in 1966. It seems that that was a good year for the Sinatra family. But Sinatra’s album “Watertown” which came out in 1970, only sold 30,000 copies. He just sort of retired from recording new stuff after that. He got dissatisfied with the way his voice sounded and although he performed in Vegas, things were never the same.I only discovered how much I loved his earlier music in that early fall of 1968. That’s the month I started to college at West Georgia College in Carrollton. West Georgia still had a real “small college” feel back in 1968, and I’m glad I went there. Another reason I’m glad I went to was because that’s where I met my future wife. But…back to Sinatra. My “assigned” roommate in Strozier Hall at West Georgia College, whose name was also Larry, was a real record collector. He brought his record collection, and his record player to college with him. I didn’t have squat besides the clothes in my closet, so I asked Larry if I could listen to his record player while he was gone to class. He told me it was ok, but “You might not like my taste in music” At first, I had to agree. There were no rock and roll records in his collection. No Elvis, no Beatles, no Rolling Stones. There was Sinatra, Nancy Wilson and Deon Warwick. There were about 6 Sinatra records, and his record player held five albums at a time, so I took Sinatra. It was a good choice. The albums were all from the fifties and early sixties…up to that 1966 album from which “Strangers in the Night” came. There was Cole Porter songs like “I’ve Got You Under my Skin” and there were songs from movies like “Three Coins in the Fountain” There were the greats: “Come Fly with Me”, “The Days of Wine and Roses”, “Fly Me to the Moon”, “The Lady is a Tramp”, “That’s Life”, and my favorite of all of his songs “It Was a Very Good Year”. My next to favorite was the oft recorded Paul Anka song “My Way” I think he is best remembered for that song, but I liked “very good year” the best. It hit me the first time I heard it, and it still does the same to me after all of these years. He had a great hit song in the seventies with “New York, New York,” too. That was in 1979, and Sinatra is remembered best for that song, even though it came from a Liza Minelli movie. All of those records that my roommate brought with him to college changed my tastes in music. I went on to listen to just about every album he had brought. I got to like Patti Page and Doris Day. I listened to Rosemary Clooney and Eartha Kitt. I took the measure of Billy Vaughn and Burt Bacharach. If not for those albums, I’d have never loved music as completely as I do and would have missed a lot of good moments in the history of music. Larry and I were roommates for that entire year, and after that year I married my permanent roommate! I do still love Sinatra though, and I’m glad for YouTube so I can dial up the old hits from time to time. I grew to even like Nancy Wilson too. Larry said I would…..