Friday, February 21, 2014

Grace Slick vs Cheap Trick

Dear John,
It's a conundrum. Ordinarily I'd choose Grace Slick over Cheap Trick without a second thought. But when it comes to questions of love and widowhood, Cheap Trick has the advantage.
Let me explain. After I got off work I had to get groceries. I turned north from County Road 42 onto US 33. That was a mistake. That low-lying section of US 33 about half a mile north of 42 was under water. The road needed to be closed but wasn't, and there's nowhere to turn off or around, so all of rush-hour traffic - such as it is around here - crawled through running water at 5 mph.
That left a lot of time to listen to the radio. First I heard Cheap Trick's The Flame - "You were the first, you'll be the last." That nails my state of widowhood quite well. Grace Slick was up next, which would have been good if she'd been singing about rabbits. But she was telling me that I have to find somebody to love. And I can't agree with that.
I never could, you know. I never went looking for somebody to love. That's a recipe for disaster, because you end up picking the least-objectionable person in sight and making do. I've loved twice - you and John 1.0 - and I wasn't looking for love, in right or wrong places. I just met somebody that I fell in love with. When you and I met, we were decidedly not looking for love. I'd just been dumped by John 1.0 and didn't want anymore guys distracting me from getting through college, and you thought it wouldn't be fair to ask a woman to go through pre-med, med school, and everything else with you. None of that kept us from falling in love; it just kept us from realizing it for a couple of years.
So Cheap Trick wins the Flooded Road Love Sweepstakes. Love isn't something to be shopped for, like a new car. When it comes, it's a gift to be received. And it doesn't end. It certainly isn't at the mercy of a temporary separation like death. You were the first, you'll be the last. You're stuck with me. So there.
To come down to the mundane, the basement is recovering. Those two low areas are a bit damp, but we learned almost 20 years ago to not put anything there, so it's not a problem. There is standing water everywhere, and it's busy turning into sheets of ice. As another song says, I can't decide which is worse.
Pandora is playing Let it Be -  that's sound theology. There is still a light that shines on me. And I try my best to say, as Mary did, "Let it be to me as you have said."

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