Running With The Devil

If you ever want to quote or attribute anything to my name, use this:

Screw cleanliness. Self awareness is next to Godliness.

Love is a lot of things. One thing it is, that people rarely talk about, is compromising your principles for harmony. I’m coming up on four years with the loves of my life, my wife, the Bobina, and my two of my three daughters,, 16-year-old Tay, and 7-year-old Goose. Before they came along, my middle daughter, now 8-year-old Bug, and I had an odd bi-weekly habit. I’d take her to, what I call the main ring of Hell, the Mall of Georgia. I’d let her “ride the ponies” (carousel) and play on the playground. Then we’d buy a couple of cookies (oatmeal raisin for me, whatever she wanted for her) and call it a good 2 hours. I did it for her. I loved her so much that I sucked up my disgust for crass consumerism and unnecssary crowds. I’d pop a couple of  extra pills and we’d have a good time.

I know my faults. There are many. Mostly, I have a low tolerance for nonsense. As opened-minded as I think I am, I have serious deals with music and other forms of pop culture snobbery. When I first met my wife, my myspace (remember that social media before it became a crack den?) “handle” was “Lance, Music Snob”. I made fun of other people’s music. Thinking back, I wanted to punch me too.

Saturday, I found my version of The Holy Grail. In the mall of georgia courtyard is a small store called The Rock Shop. Inside are vintage t-shirts, posters, and DVDs of some of my favorite punk and rock bands like The Ramones, The Misfits, Alice in Chains, Iron Maiden, The Clash, and many more. While I contemplated spending 20 bucks I didn’t really have on getting a 1992 Alice in Chains concert tee, the proprieter, a well tattooed dude about my age, chatted up a weird guy who was thumbing through Van Halen merchandise. My hands were on the t-shirt, I felt my debit card in my ripped blue jeans pocket when the bomb dropped.

Shop owner: ” you know, Van Halen is back on tour and has a new CD coming out. I can pre-order it for you.”

Weird guy: “Yeah, I’m excited but I’m also disappointed. Sammy Hagar’s not involved. I mean I like David Lee Roth but the band was so much tighter with Sammy.”

My fists clenched and my temples throbbed. Diamond Dave is Van Halen, you giant jackass! ….I said it under my breath.

I realized that I really had changed. My wife and kids have mellowed me and given me perspective. Four years ago, I would have yelled at the weird guy, gotten thrown out of a great new place, and wasted an opportunity to look forward to the mall with the women I love. My wife called me at the exact moment the conversation happened inside the rock shop. It was like she knew something was going down. I walked out and started breathing normally again.

Yesterday, for the sake of this blog, I compromised another principle. I suppressed my deep dislike for The Facebook and re-opened my idle account after two years burning up the internets with twitter and this blog. &!/pages/My-Blog-Can-Beat-Up-Your-Blog/339720439382777?sk=wall 

I’m enjoying the new avenues to talk to friends, family, and fellow writers. If I see Nickelback or Van Hagar mentioned positively in a status or post I’ll ignore it or maybe go to the gym and hit a speed bag.

I’ve dealt with my Devil. Now, like Diamond Dave’s Van Halen, in 1978, I’m just running with it.