Thursday, June 14, 2018

Capitals Fan Chris

In light of hockey fever, I feel compelled to remember my irracible and ever loyal friend Chris who was a Washington native and, literally, a die hard Capitals fan. His sons grew up breathing hockey with a goal perennially set up in their front yard in Silver Spring.

Chris and his wife Adele religiously attended the boys' games, and months would go by in which the entire family was consumed by all things hockey. Practices. Hockey at school. Hockey on TV. I would text Chris to come to a rock show, and his one word answer would be "game." Even after the boys stopped playing and moved onto college and other things, the family stayed in touch, cheering and screaming through every Capitals season that came to a not so happy ending.

In April of 2015, Chris died suddenly while watching a game on TV, at home in his own living room. This is why I couldn't help but think of him all through the playoffs. And when the team finally declared a long sought victory for Washington, I know Adele and his sons couldn't have been happier except for that enormous hole in their lives that only Chris could fill.

Now that I've thoroughly bummed you all out, let me go on to say that Chris was also a huge music fan and a total gear head.  He left behind a massive vinyl and CD collection which reflected his eclectic and inclusive taste, and he was a booster for local rock. He would have loved the whole idea of Rhizome - that crazy place on the hill in Takoma Park for events outside the box. This Saturday look for another installment of Seventh Stanine, an all ages music festival with bands starting at 2 and rolling through 11 o' clock in the evening. Here's a link to the schedule. Elsewhere JV is jam packed with music all day and night, too,  including Patty Reese with Dave Chappell rocking away the afternoon and The Thrillbillys throwing it down at night.

Friday night  Ruthie and the Wranglers will be honky-tonking at Pearl Street Warehouse. Valentine Slim is mixing things up at the Takoma VFW, and The Nighthawks rock JV.

Thursday, June 7, 2018

No More Pencils No More Books

I started school again in September of 1995, and even though I was ready, with all the supplies and a cute little outfit picked out, it was still kind of scary. My daughter was four years old, and I was supposed to leave her there all day. ALL day.  This seemed very strange to me. I grew up when kindergarten was the starting line, and we only went until lunchtime.

 At first it was a relief to have her socked away in school, but then all the old anxiety triggers came rushing back. Homework. Especially math homework. Deadlines. Boring textbooks.  And don't get me started on the horrors of science projects.

When Zoe started school, I didn't stop to think about just how long I was going to be involved with DCPS which oftentimes felt like Mr Toad's Wild Ride.  Turns out it was from 1995 until this upcoming weekend, when my son will graduate from Wilson High as long as he has turned in all of his textbooks (as of today one is still missing) and if he hasn't been classified as a truant. (That might be a close one, too, with all the new restrictions. If you miss a class- you miss the day.)

I was pretty dang organized back in the Pre- K era, but this year... let's just say little things fell between the cracks. Like teacher conferences and ordering a yearbook. And getting the boy into college. Right about now I am grateful to hear Doris Day singing in my head. You know the one.

Speaking of music here's a few "school's out for summer" parties for those of you counting the days. All are good choices, and all land on Friday night because that's just the way life is. Old school prog rockers should check out The Messthetics opening for Ted Leo and the Pharmacists at the Black Cat. Or kickback to the 80s at JV's with Pile of Rocks, a Nick Lowe/ Dave Edmunds tribute kind of band with The Yachtsmen on board to warm things up first set.

And for anyone in a Cajun frame of mind, Little Red and the Renegades will throw it down at Haydees in Mount Pleasant.