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Living in Chicago, by way of Dayton, OH and Havertown, PA. Contact me at atozpod@gmail.com.



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Wednesday, January 23, 2008

from Giving It Back to Gold

Day 577, Session 106:
Friday January 18th - In the living room.
First song:
Giving It Back by Matthew Sweet
Last full song: Gold by Interference
Progress: 1606-1635 of 5652
Total Songs Heard: 1299

Why would a man need a version of God Bless America on his ipod? The first reason of course would be if he were a great patriot. The second reason, and the one that applies here, is if he's a Philadelphia Flyers fan. Kate Smith was an American singer and radio performer who did most of her work in the 1930s and 40s. This version of God Bless America was recorded for the 1943 movie "This Is The Army," but found its place in the hearts of Flyers fans when the team began playing it before big games. The Flyers had an unbelievable record when kicking things off with Kate Smith. The high point of this pre-game tradition came in 1974 when the Flyers were playing the Bruins in the Stanley Cup finals. Kate Smith appeared live and thus inspired, the Flyers went on to win the game and their first Stanley Cup title.

Thanks to the magic of the internet, you can actually see the performance. It's not the greatest version of the song ever, but check out the crowd reaction. The ovation the crowd gives before a note is even sung captures the true bat-shit insane electricity of the moment. I've been in the crowd for some pretty exciting moments, but I don't think anything compares to this:

Goose bump city.

The original version of the song isn't bad either:
God Bless America - Kate Smith

Warning: Stop right here if you want a avoid a big sticky pile of sap.

I kind of have issues with "home." I grew up outside of Philadelphia and since that's where I grew up, that's where I've thought of as home for most of my life. One problem though, I don't live there anymore (and neither do my parents, so I'm almost never there.) It's been almost 14 years since Philly actually was home even though it still sometimes feels that way.

Even though I've been in Chicago for almost 7 years now, the first 5 and a half of those years were spent moving from apartment to apartment, never really settling down. Now The Wife and I own a house and 18 months into that experience we're really starting to make the place ours. When I got to the Barenaked Ladies song Go Home I started thinking that maybe this place is it. This feeling has been enhanced recently by our attempts to tackle some home improvement projects. If you know me, you know I'm not exactly a handyman, so several of the projects have been much harder than they should be. This is mostly due to my ineptness. For example, yesterday I broke off a drill bit and couldn't find where the broken bit piece ended up. This leads me to believe that it may be embedded somewhere on my body (possibly in my eye because safety glasses are for suckers.) My ineptness makes me feel kind of useless, and it's hard to feel at home in a place where you feel useless.

Through a quirk in scheduling I barely saw The Wife yesterday. I got home late last night and tried to sneak my way into bed. As I slipped under the covers The Wife, still 90% asleep, rolled over and wrapped an arm around me and said "There you are."

And there I was. That was home.

Go Home - Barenaked Ladies

I am lucky to be one of the few who has found somebody who can tolerate me.

Finally, if you were wondering how many different versions of Go Your Own Way one guy needs, the answer is three (original and live version by Fleetwood Mac, cover by The Cranberries.) I bet you thought the answer was less than 1.


Michael said...

I like the redesign!

Leave the sap in the forest though. Ugh. :) Just kidding, that was sweet.

I'm nowhere close to owning a house, but I've been having similar thoughts about the definition of "home" recently. It's kind of scarily grown-up, actually.

matt said...

Thanks, I was hoping someone would notice the redesign and yes... terribly sappy. I figured out but still thought it was the best thing I could write on this occasion.

If you haven't listened to song (now that I've fixed the link) you should. It lessens the sap somewhat (funny with a Katherine the Great/Horse 'loving' reference!)

And yeah, home is tricky. I want it to still be the simple 'where I grew up' definition, but as time goes on that works less and less.