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Posts Tagged ‘Asbury Park’

As parents of young children, we try to make every game, see every recital, soak up every bit of our child’s life while we can. We know deep down it doesn’t last long. In no time their friends will take our place; there will be sleepovers and soon some boy who looks like he’s 12 will show up at the door to drive them somewhere. If we are lucky, we may still hear about a bit of success along the way. Some children tell us of their failures, most will keep their own counsel, not wanting to worry us.

I thought it was funny this weekend when I “heard” via twitter that my son the Rocker played on the same stage as the Boss. Maybe it’s boys. Boys don’t chatter on about relationships, they don’t usually dissect their friends’ love lives. I remember reading once if you wanted to talk with your son, first engage them in something physical. You know, wash the car together, or clean up the garage. I remember long car rides to his hockey games where we did manage to talk. Back then, it seemed like his duffel bag filled to the brim with his ice hockey gear was bigger than he was.

Since my son’s band, the Parlor Mob, broke up, I only hear about bits and pieces of his working life. The Bride can always call Bob to discuss some course of medical treatment, the latest emergent intervention for stroke patients or whatever. We Facetime quite a bit with the Love Bug. But with the Rocker, I hear about his music as an aside; “I’ve got a deadline on this commercial,” or “I’m doing a PBS film about a photographer you might have heard of?” I learn what can be included in his IMDB status, and what can’t, and I know that he’s always playing guitar in one or another of his friends’ bands.

So living just a mile away from Bruce Springsteen in NJ we’d often cross paths. At the gym, at the drug store, or at the movies. But I was never formally introduced to him, he wouldn’t know me even though I wrote a weekly column about our town in the local paper. There was no picture on my byline. There was no online access. I knew people who “knew” him personally, but it just never happened. Which is kind of weird, cause like people who read my column religiously, I felt like I knew him. His music was ingrained in my soul.

This past weekend the Rocker and his friend Sam, who was the drummer from Parlor Mob, played for his friend Nicole Atkins at the Paramount Theatre in Asbury Park, NJ. I’ve talked about Nicole before, she has an incredible voice, and a new album “Slow Phaser” about to drop. http://www.pledgemusic.com/projects/nicoleatkins/updates/31296?utm_campaign=project6348&utm_medium=activity&utm_source=twitter

It was the “Light of Day” concert to benefit Parkinson’s Disease. ¬†http://www.nj.com/entertainment/music/index.ssf/2014/01/nicole_atkins_to_enliven_light_of_day_in_asbury_park.html

And the Boss was in the wings watching their set. As they were leaving, he was introduced to Bruce who shook his hand and said, “You’re a great guitarist.” Since I follow Nicole on twitter, I knew the Boss was there, so I called my son.

And now, I can die happy.

The Rocker with Uli

The Rocker with Uli

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Nothing much new today, except that little thing about the Pope. I wonder what his parachute package will look like? Will they give him a condo in the Vatican with a kitchenette; a “memory” apartment option; maybe a nice gold watch? Just watched a podcast about a Hindu holiday in India called Kumbh Mela. Everyone swims in 2 rivers and gets blessed by these naked holy men who smoke marijuana, in a nutshell. I just knew my Catholic upbringing was lacking…but for me it took a Purim festival to figure out we all have different ways to worship. To practice faith.
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This week I took a quick trip alone, back to the Jersey Shore, to my land between 2 rivers, to see the Rocker and Ms Cait in their new, post-Sandy home. After so many years of not driving in the North on their turnpikes and parkways, I was full of faith at the start. My aggressive driving techniques have faded from too many country roads where everyone goes slow and stops for everything. But I crossed the Delaware Bridge with alacrity and managed to avoid bending any fenders. The first thing I noticed was the flags, or lack thereof. The flags that flew over bridges after 9/11 were mostly gone.

Times change, and maybe that’s good. We are really no longer a nation at war, hopefully leaving Afghanistan with the tools to govern themselves.

And speaking of tools. I may have said this before, but whenever a friend’s child would go off to college I’d pack them a tool box for their dorm room – a hammer, screwdriver, some nails. And then, at some point down the road, I told my adult children that I would no longer help them move, from college to first apartment, or apartment to a home. But, I would always be happy to help them “decorate!” Their second floor walk-up in a grand pre-War building is filled with light. Ms Cait found some plants and the Rocker took me on a tour of thrift shops in the neighborhood. And after watching my son build a table for their new nest in Asbury Park, I felt a certain peace.
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Hurricane Sandy may have taken away the boardwalk, and the big time developers may have dismantled the famous painted pony carousel and sold them off for a song, but there is a fresh, new vibe in this town. Everywhere we walked, they ran into someone they knew. A friend from Deane Porter elementary school started a vegan restaurant, “Seed to Sprout,” where you can take your loved one for a delicious and healthy Valentine’s prix fixe dinner. I thoroughly enjoyed seeing Cait’s Mom again, and sharing tastes of our sweet potato sushi and kale salad, with gelato that was to die for. It made absolutely no sense that it was made without cream, because it was that yummy. You can “Like” them on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/pages/From-Seed-to-Sprout/323375011030582

Faith is a funny thing. No matter how many storms may roar through your life, in our family, there is something special about the sunshine and strong wind that eventually follows. We will never leave the beach in our hearts.
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Happy Valentine’s Day to all you lovebirds.

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