Because I was not feeling great I opted not to go out Friday night and instead stayed home in my jammies with the mutt and watched Friday night television (which sucks, by the way). While channel surfing through the crud, however, I did catch some of the Detroit Public Television broadcast of a Bruce Springsteen concert from NYC. And it was GREAT!
My parents gave me my first record player when I was about 2 years old and it was my very favourite toy ever. I carried it with me everywhere and took really good care of all my records --- carefully putting them back in the plastic sleeves before putting them in their cardboard ones, making sure the needle didn't scratch, etc. (if you are reading this and were born post 1980, go ask your parents what I am talking about)
This rather anal behaviour carried over to my teen years, though my stereo equipment improved rather significantly. I had amassed a rather large collection of vinyl by the time I was 18 and all records were kept in milk crates, in alphabetical, chronological order and I was more than aware when someone had disturbed them. In late 1986 Bruce Springsteen came out with his "Boxed Set" --- 5 albums of his greatest hits (this unfortunately started a trend of boxed sets in the music industry, but Springsteen's was the first and I think the best). Anyway, shortly before Christmas I bought the boxed set for myself, at the astronomical price of around $50.00.
It was the night of the Bal de Neiges (The Snow Ball), a Montreal traditional family ball to benefit the Montreal Association for the Blind. Of course we were going "en famille" and of course us three girls were running late l(uckily my parents always had a thing about bathrooms, so we each had our own and didn't have to fight for space). When I came out of the shower I could hear strains of Mr. Springsteen coming from below. Now I had not even cracked the seal on this album and I was (still am) a little funny about people listening to my records before I do (holds true with books, magazines and newspapers, you have been warned). I threw on my robe and ran down the stairs, fully prepared to tear a strip off of my sister, the obvious culprit, and maybe even cause her bodily harm.
It wasn't my sister.
I got down to the foyer and looked around the corner into the livingroom and there was my dad, dressed and ready to go in his tuxedo, little half-moon glasses on the end of his nose, boring legal brief on his lap, tapping his pencil in time to "Rosilita". He looked up and saw me and said:
"Katie, isn't the Boss great?" (Seriously, he is the only man alive that is actually allowed to refer to Bruce Springsteen as "The Boss" and not get smacked upside the head. )
Way to take the anger wind out of my sails, dad.
My mum bought a cd player for my dad for Christmas that year, and this back in the day when you had to pretty much take out a 3rd mortgage on the house to do so, and so I bought him his first cd --- "The River".
My mum's youngest brother, my Uncle Pete, now has all of my albums. Seeing as how I have left them in my parents' attic for 15 years or so and seeing as how he actually has an amazing turntable, he deserves them. And his daughters, a good 20 years younger than me, love the fact that they now have "vintage" Madonna, Sex Pistols, Violent Femmes and the Pretty in Pink soundtrack, not to mention my complete collection of The Who and all my import 45's. I was visiting him and his family last Christmas and we put Springsteen's boxed set on --- his live version of "Fire" still gives me chills.