Once upon a time in the Seventies, there was a popular singing group. A group of brothers. Bringing song to the world. Times were different then. We weren't consumed with the scandal. We didn't care to dig for what was not there. We just enjoyed the music. These brothers, man, they could sing. They burst onto the scene in the late Sixties. They had us "finger snapping" and "toe tapping". They were the Jackson Five. And they were led by their little brother, Michael.
Like many, I'll miss Michael Jackson. As much of the hoopla surrounding his death begins to wane (unfortunately, it's not over by a long shot!) I felt it a good time to comment. While I'll miss his music, I feel much the same when Lou Rawls, Isaac Hayes, or Luther Vandross died. I miss genius. Just like so many others, Michael was true genius.
When I was a kid I tried to stay out of trouble. But like most kids, trouble typically found me. I don't know what I was thinking on that hot summer day back in 1967. I was just a ten year old kid, out having fun. On that particular day, most of my friends were not around. I don't know what happened to them, but after realizing they weren't out and about, I figured I had to find ways to have fun by myself. And that, is where my troubles began.
I grew up in the small city of Massillon. Situated in Northeastern Ohio, it's claim to fame is football. Located less than 10 miles from the Pro Football Hall of Fame, the town has a long, storied history of significant gridiron greats and gridiron accomplishments. In Massillon, September to November were the greatest times to be alive. That was when it all happened. And everything, and I mean everything, revolve around our high school football team, the Massillon Washington High School Tigers, or better known as the Massillon Tigers.
The other day, I was channel surfing and ran across an airing of "The Wizard of Oz" on TBS. Whenever I watch this wonderful movie it evokes many fond memories. More than any movie I have ever seen, this one, for me, is synonymous with family. Wonderfully entertaining, it takes back to a simpler, less complicated time.
It's been going on for a number of years. In fact, since he was about nine. He fell in love with rap and hip hop. Yep, my oldest son. I did what I could to block it. I played a lot of old R&B tunes and even let him listen to top 40. But he stayed true to his music and stuck with the Rap and Hip Hop. Which wasn't so bad. At first.
\America has been stolen. At least that is what many people want us to believe. So, under the protection of the American Flag and the U.S. Constitution, they scream to whoever will listen that we need to take our country back. My question is, from who? No foreign power has invaded our country, no military coup took over our government. So, again, I ask, take back our country from who?
We used to fix things, a long time ago. We didn't throw them out. We didn't buy new ones. When they quit running, we either fixed them, or took them to someone who could. We were not a disposable society. Things had meaning. They had a purpose. And so, we didn't easily give up on our things.
My mother was an early riser. Typically, by 5:00 in the morning she was up and about, having her first cup of coffee. I use to think that my mother was a coffee addict. Each morning, without fail, she would sit at the kitchen table and sip her coffee alone, staring pensively into space. I never thought much about it while growing up. I was a kid and finding meaning in such actions really were not at the top of my agenda. Of course, had I been in tune, I would have learned a lot from her early morning vigil.
My kids wonder why I'm so attentive when I get into the car and start it up. I listen closely as the engine whines and then revs up. I'll listen to the radio., albeit turned low, as I drive. But when one of the kids reach over and try to turn it up, I stop them. You see, I'm listening. And this is all W.C.'s fault.