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Part of me thought this day would never come! We ripped out our old kitchen during the last week of June, and we are nearing the end of October, so it has been a LONG process! I am so thrilled with the way everything came out, though, and I cant wait to share allllll of the details with you. Because it was scary.
And if your children saw it they would run away screaming. I could not even handle the faux laminate wood for one single minute, so one of the first things we did was paint the cabinets white and change out the hardware.
By that time, the paint on the cabinets was chipping, some of the drawers were saggy and broken, and if I had to look at one more piece of fruit on that backsplash, I was going to pull my hair out! I now get a big silly grin on my face every time I walk in the kitchen rather than cringing at the ugliness that was our old kitchen! When we started making plans for the new space, I knew I wanted it to be light and bright! One day I pushed it in front of the window to get it out of my way, and when I stepped back and looked at it, I realized it fit absolutely perfectly!
I gave it a little paint job and some new knobs, and it settled nicely into its new home. This hymn is one of my favorites, and I love having a permanent place for it in our home as a constant reminder. Terry works in a rock and roll band looking for that million dollar sound.
The Genius of Gossip Girl
Got a job down in Darlington. Some nights I go to the drive in. Some night I stay home. It was about a decade ago. The song had been around for a long time before I first heard it — Bruce Springsteen would say it was the first song he wrote after Born To Run made him a rock and roll star in It figures that this was the first. Born to Run, the whole album, was about longing, open highway, the amusement park rising bold and stark, the poets who write nothing at all, the ghosts in the eyes of all the boys Mary sent away.
And The Promise is about the every day numbing of those dreams.
This version is stripped down to almost nothing, just Springsteen and a piano. And the weirdest thing happened, something I can never remember happening before or since when I listened to a song. I felt myself crying.
Drove my Challenger down Route 9 through the dead ends and all the bad scenes. He mildly bumps the bed with his knee.
It is summertime, but rain pours, so it is still dark, a harsh gray. My father walks out of the room without saying a word. There is nothing to say.
It is time to get up. There are no morning showers. We have timed our morning to the minute so that we can get as much sleep as possible … or, more to the point, so I can get as much sleep as possible. I meet my father downstairs. He is already there — he is always there first, dressed, ready to go. He is always waiting on me. He wakes up long before 6 a. His lunch is packed in a brown paper sack.
It is probably a salami sandwich. It is usually a salami sandwich. We trudge out to the car, a declining Pontiac T that I hope to buy at the end of the summer. We ride in silence for a few minutes.
Then we start to talk about small things. We stop at Popeyes for a breakfast biscuit. The morning gains light slowly, like an old television picture tube coming to life.
The ride is 30 minutes or so. There is little traffic this early in the morning. And then, we get out … and go into the factory. Alisa is the name of the place. It is a knitting factory. We make sweaters, I guess, though I never actually see any sweaters. It is hard to breathe because of the heat and the humidity and the dust and the cardboard boxes and because the yarn chokes the air.
I feel sure that a sweater is being knitted in my lungs.
He unclogs jams, quiets the guttural sounds, tightens bolts that break free, loosens bolts that choke the machine.
His hands are unnaturally strong; I have known this since I was a boy. Now I see that he uses his fingers to loosen bolts that are wedged tight. There is no time to find a wrench. Sometimes, when the machines run smoothly, I see him drawing Xs on graph paper as he works out a sweater color design.
When kids in school used to ask me what my father did for a living, I would tell them he designs sweaters. That was how I saw him.
My job is to stay in the warehouse and move boxes of yarn in and out, and, one day a week, Thursday, unload barrels of dye from a truck.
I am doing this to raise enough money buy that old car, that Pontiac. I am an accounting major at college though even the most basic accounting concepts baffle me. Everything feels out of reach. My job there was to set up a payment schedule. I was too young to know what it meant.
I got threatened a lot. But I needed money and so I sold it. But I got drunk one night and I told it.
People who follow the Springsteen story know that the time when he wrote The Promise, that time after Born To Run made him a star and before Darkness made him an adult, that time was strange for him.
He was locked in a searing legal battle with his manager Mike Appel over creative freedom — the thing Springsteen called his musical soul — and he was struggling with what it meant to be a huge success for the first time in his life.
He hated success and loved it and hated himself for loving it. And the music poured out of him like sweat. He was 27 and hungry, still hungry, but he was not entirely sure for what. He was listening to punk music.
The Mystery of Ode to Billie Joe
He was listening to Hank Williams. But at least with Born To Run, there was a clear vision everyone could understand. That was what year-old musicians did. The kid had ambition.
But nobody quite knew what Springsteen was trying to do with Darkness, maybe not even Springsteen himself. The band learned song after song after song. Some of the songs sounded like hits, but Springsteen seemed uninterested in those. Because he would have been one of the great pop songwriters of all time. He did not want hits, not then.