“Black Betty bam ba lam whoah Black Betty…” My sister and I have heard these lyrics our entire lives. These words have been sung with the radio and without the radio, in the car, in the shower, and while cleaning the house, by my dad. I have a difficult time believing anyone thinks their dad is as cool as Tracy and I believe our dad to be. However, if there are dads out there who are just as cool, hilarious, and twisted, then this world is a better place than I imagine.
Little ever happened in our family without a radio (or, as my dad refers to it, “The Ghetto Blaster”) blasting in the background. The house was never cleaned, the river never visited, no oil was ever changed without REO Speedwagon, Aerosmith, Joan Jett, or The Eagles serenading us. When I was in college, I worked at a Toyota dealership which was located on the same side of town where my dad worked. So, all summer long, my dad and I would hop in the Ranger and head off to work. Few words were ever exchanged on our rides to work, but our morning routine was filled with classic rock.
One thing I have rarely done in life is take things for granted. I am not sure why this is, but even as a child, I consciously thought about how lucky I was and how appreciative I was for the things I received (even the intangible). While singing in the car with my dad, attending my first Joan Jett concert at age fourteen, dancing in the driveway with my mom and sister (and giggling because we were embarrassed when Mom and Dad started slow dancing), or hearing “Mama’s got a squeeze box she wears on her chest!!!” belted from the shower at nine o’clock at night, I knew I was lucky. I knew that one day I would miss these little moments. It turns out these moments were not little, and that today is the day that I miss these big moments.
Of of the two, yes two, radio stations (public radio not included) in our area, not one is worth a darn. Songs are over played and favorite tunes from years ago are rarely heard. Unless you like new country or new pop, you will be sorely disappointed. After a few weeks of living in this so-called God’s Country, I figured out that if I altered my route to work, I could pick up two radio stations from Bismarck, ND. I never believed my life would come to this, deciding my work commute based on radio reception. I can promise you that in the city, this doesn’t happen.
This morning, while listening to Bob FM, Steve Perry’s “Oh Sherrie” caught me off guard. This is one of those songs that for no particular reason causes goosebumps to run up my arms. Through the pangs caused by a brief bout with homesickness, I thanked God for such a wonderful start to my morning. It was just what I needed.
Folks, The Displaced City Girl says, “Don’t take anything for granted!” Even something as seemingly unimportant as belting our your favorite tune on the way to work should be appreciated.
From my radio to yours, God bless you!