The Pretender

Birthday week of 2017 was a doozy. Music. Sunshine. Friends. Food. Family. Frolicking. Revelry. Reminiscing. More music…and a tad bit of introspection.

We had been in Orygun less than 3 months when Jackson Browne released “The Pretender.” If I had a “ben franklin” for every time I have played the album since I bought the first vinyl copy in 1976, it woulda paid for my new Prius.
The Pretender is still on my 5-CD changer after keeping me company all week….and providing lots of fodder for both reminiscing and introspection.

Lyrics, links and a {comment} or two follow… No singer-songwriter has written more songs that make me reflect on my way of life, my directions and where I am, where I’ve been, and what I’ve done than Jackson Browne.

The Fuse
“….Whatever it is you might think you have
You have nothing to lose
Through every dead and living thing
Time runs like a fuse
And the fuse is burning…”
{Does a short fuse burn faster? It sure seems like it…}

Your Bright Baby Blues
“…Everybody’s going somewhere
Riding just as fast as they can ride
I guess they’ve got a lot to do
Before they can rest assured
Their lives are justified…”

The Only Child
“… take good care of your mother
And remember to be kind…
…And when you’ve found another soul
Who sees into your own
Take good care of each other…”
{“Three things in human life are important. The first is to be kind. The second is to be kind. And the third is to be kind.” Henry James}

Daddy’s Tune
“…Living your life day after day
Soon all your plans and changes
Either fail or fade away…”
{Never been much of “a planner.” Probably moreso now than ever. My plans: live life day after day; be kind; enjoy every sandwich; listen to lots of music; give lots of hugs; repeat.}

Sleeps Dark and Silent Gate
“…Sometimes I lie awake at night and wonder
Where the years have gone
They have all passed under
Sleep’s Dark and Silent Gate…”
{Lots of years have passed since I first had this album on repeat. I haven’t laid awake at night very often. But there has been lots of wondering…lots and lots of wondering.}

The Pretender
“…I’m gonna find myself a girl
Who can show me what laughter means
And we’ll fill in the missing colors
In each others paint by number dreams…”

{In the fall of 1976 I had absolutely no intentions of ever struggling for the legal tender. 6 years later I was starting a 14 year career with the largest accounting firm in the world…wearing wing tips, wool, silk and cotton….and “keeping score” by looking at the last line of page 1 of my Form 1040.
Several years ago my late friend and mentor John Crudele asked me if I had “taken a vow of poverty.” I told him that I was going to live rich and die poor….and that for the second time in my life I had found the girl that Jackson Browne had sung about. I have never been richer than I am in 2017.
I am a lucky guy. What more can anyone want? Friends, music, and someone to love….who loves you.
Don’t be stingy with your hugs.
Just Be.}

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