Saturday, January 30, 2010

I Recommend...

Michael Perry and the Long Beds.

To backtrack a bit, I bought Warren Coop for Christmas. He'd already read Truck and Population 485 and it was all I could do to keep him out of the book store so I could "surprise" him Christmas Eve with Coop. He read it within the next 48 hours. He'd read me just enough passages and I'd snuck off with the book just enough times to know that it would definitely make its way to my "must read" list. I also discovered his blog (Thanks, B) and from a link in his sidebar found out he'd be in our neck of the woods January 29. Perfect! A book reading (my first ever) and a chance to hear the band. And only an hour away with our favorite restaurant marking the half way spot. So we lined up a babysitter which was no small feat. Try finding a babysitter willing to sit for 5 kids at the end of a dead end country road. And even harder is having enough jing to pay said babysitter for watching 5 kids for say, 7 hours. Times are different now days; I remember babysitting 3 kids for $1.00/hour, 40 hours a week all summer. Let's just say last night cost us more than I earned in a 1985 week.

So he quietly walks on stage wearing a red plaid flannel shirt and carpenter jeans. He has this well they paid for this so I might as well read something attitude and then has the crowd roaring with laughter within the first couple of sentences. This was quite easily the best performance I've seen next to anything my kids have ever done of course. One minute my cheeks hurt from smiling and laughing so hard and the next that spot under my chin where it curves into neck hurt from trying to hold back the tears. And if I'm not mistaken he even had a mist in his eyes when reading his memoir of preparing for the birth of his daughter.

Be prepared, though, if you get a chance to attend a reading you will walk away with a serious understanding of the pain and resulting heroism of passing a kidney stone. You might want chickens. You might Google M.C. Escher illusions. If you have a secret yearning to give birth at home, you'll definitely want to drink tea with Leah. And for the entrepreneurs, Timothy hay will be your next big endeavor.

Then the band played and they were all great. I've been thinking all day of stepping outside the box of classical violin and trying my hand at a little fiddle. But I cannot express how much I loved the acoustic bass guitar. Before last night I recognized two types of guitars: electric and acoustic. But the long haired bass player with the overgrown mustache-you know the kind that stores lunch's best crumbs for a mid-afternoon snack-he made the best music on that longnecked guitar. The deep bum, bum, bum hooked me right in. I'm listening right now.

Now do yourself a favor and go read some Michael Perry.