Friday, November 19, 2010

To LBK: Car rides


Now is a precious, fleeting time when we do everything together. We eat, shop, watch TV, work, exercise, commute. I find myself looking forward to the commute time together the most. The 40-minute ride to work doesn’t bother me so much because I’m not commuting alone anymore. We talk, we sing, we enjoy each other’s company.

We’ll talk about the day that’s waiting for us at the office, the people we’ll meet with, the projects we’ll work on. I wonder if the people stuck in traffic next to us think that I’m talking on my cell phone using the world’s smallest earpiece. Otherwise, they think I’m the crazy lady in the car talking to herself. They don’t know that you and I are talking about our Christmas lists and making plans for daddy, or that we’re discussing how to arrange your new furniture in the nursery.

On the satellite radio, we listen to mommy’s music from high school on 90’s on 9 and Backspin. I know someday you will hate this music. You’ll roll your eyes and put on your headphones in the backseat. Maybe we’ll argue over the radio station because I won’t understand your music either. But for now, we sing along together. From SWV to Guns-N-Roses, to Alanis, to old school Mary J. We belt out the lyrics to the whole eclectic mix, and we sound great together, as long as it’s just us in the car. I even have a playlist of songs I want to sing to you when you get here, and we practice those together, too. Hopefully you won’t notice until you’re older that mommy can’t sing.

I remember riding in the car with my mom, your Grandma Lori, when I was a little girl. We’d listen to 70’s classic rock, her high school soundtrack, and we’d crank up the volume when our favorites came on. We’d rock out to Journey, Sly and the Family Stone, Steppenwolf and many others.

We had a John Cougar cassette tape (you won’t know who he is or what cassettes are). My favorite song was “Ain’t Even Done With the Night.” I thought it was so cool that, A) we even had a cassette player in the car, and B) that cassette player had extra rewind and forward buttons that would go to the beginning of the previous or next song. How did we find the song we wanted without these buttons, you ask? Well, back then we had to hold the rewind and fast-forward buttons down for a little while, and then hit play and hope that we were somewhere near the beginning of the song we wanted. Rewind a little more. Fast-forward a little more. There was a lot of back and forth, and a lot of ruined cassette tapes. But this super amazing rewind button in the car allowed Grandma Lori and me to play our favorite John Cougar song over and over and over with ease. Now you and I sing it together when it comes on my iPod.

Even though I “can’t carry a tune in a bucket,” as your Great-Grandma Betty would say, music has always been a big part of my life. It’s one of the first things your daddy and I realized we had in common. I wonder if you will like music as much as we do. Over the few years we’ve been together, daddy and I have traded over 40 mixed playlists, introducing each other to new music we’ve found, or reminiscing over “old” music that’s just too good to forget. They started out as CD’s we’d burn for each other, and now we just share the playlists on our networked computers. We’ve come a long way since ruined cassette tapes.

In the short car ride to the store today, you and I discovered two new songs that we want to put on daddy’s next playlist. We didn’t commute to the office, though, because we had a doctor’s appointment this morning. Now, we have a new picture of you for the refrigerator, and I must say, you’re looking awfully cute already. Daddy and I could’ve found out if you are a boy or girl today, but we decided to wait until you get here for that big reveal.  The Roots said it best, “it don’t matter the sex, we’re gonna name it Rock-n-Roll.” Don’t worry, we won’t really name you Rock-n-Roll. But that does make me think that mommy and daddy will need to start downloading edited versions of songs …

I love you,