I commute. I do so relunctantly and under silent protest and, on good evenings, I can block out Sting howling the song Synchronicity II that plays on a loop in my head sometimes during the drive.
“Another working day has ended
Only the rush hour hell to face
Packed like lemmings into shiny metal boxes
Contestants in a suicidal race”
The morning trek, though, is typically Zen – no interstate and the bulk of the map, once I get a few miles from home, threads through semi-rural, wooded areas. There are deer, a fox, and an old woman in bright red boots who is always walking her dog in her yard.
As the only people up when Paloma and arise are us, the kid that drowsily mans the counter at the convenience store down the block, and our crack head neighbor who probably never sleeps anyhow (which is good as she needs to devote plenty of time searching for her pet ferret which she loses on a weekly basis), there is little traffic.
Today, I was mere minutes behind schedule, resulting in me crossing paths with the #2 bus. As I grew frustrated at not having open road to cruise as usual, with impunity, as though I was on the autobahn, a confusing thought came to mind…
…I don’t want to go to work, so why am I rushing to get there?
I set the controls for the heart of the sun (part of the drive, depending on the time of year, is directly into the rising sun on the horizon) and I set the iPod to shuffle, seeing what might restore the calm – Jimi Hendrix’ Machine Gun.
Jimi, you were a genius, but it’s too early.
I had to scroll forward a number of times, but I managed to find more suitable fare…
(of course, I did find myself distracted much of the morning, pondering where the #2 bus goes)
World Party – Put The Message In The Box
I haven’t heard anything Karl Wallinger’s done in years, but I loved the early World Party records. Put The Message In The Box is breezy.
I met Wallinger once. He was a small, elfin-like fellow with round, Lennon shades. He seemed like a lovely person.
Texas – Insane
Texas always reminds me of my first trip to England with two friends. Their White On Blonde album was out and, at every pub, you were guaranteed to hear several songs from it playing from the jukebox.
There are several songs I preferred, but the entire album is pretty consistent and Insane is a good sample of Texas’ frothy, blue-eyed soul.
Paul McCartney – Heart Of The Country
I don’t really know Wings aside from the hits (most of which I love), so I wasn’t familiar with this song when it popped up from the compilation Wingspan. It is an engaging little song, though. Apparently it was on Ram, which I thought was a McCartney solo record.
Little Steven & The Disciples Of Soul – Balance
I liked Little Steven’s albums with his band The Disciples Of Soul in the ‘80s. Though the execution sometimes did not match the ambition, the stuff had heart.
Balance appeared on a two-disc compilation called Greenpeace: Rainbow Warriors which gathered acts like Simple Minds, Lou Reed, and Terence Trent D’arby for the benefit of the titular organization. If I recall, I snagged it for a few dollars as a cut-out.
While Balance is a bit more forceful than the other tracks for which I opted, it arrived near the end of the drive as it was time to prepare for the office. The production screams mid-’80s which, I suppose, is probably like nails on a chalkboard to folks who didn’t come of age during that period. That aside, Balance has a nifty little groove to it.