Monday, January 31, 2005

The Ten Tenors

Stephanie and I were blessed with two tickets to see The Ten Tenors at the Majestic Theatre in downtown Dallas last night. If you are not familiar with The Ten Tenors, they are ten Australian, classically trained tenors who perform everything from classical opera "with the boring bits taken out" to Australian folk music to the Bee-Gee's and the Beach Boys to my personal favorite of the evening, Queen's Bohemian Rhapsody. I have to be honest here, these were $50 tickets that were given to us. I'm not sure I thought the show was worth $50 per ticket. However, it only cost us $5 for parking and another $7 for post-show Starbucks and it was certainly worth that.

After the show we were discussing our favorite parts and participating in some Starbucks induced dreaming about life in general when Stephanie said something about how much fun those boys looked like they were having up there on stage and how that was so infectious. It's true. They did goofy dances and joked with the audience and with each other and we all had a fun time together. They were not forcing it or faking it, they were genuinely having a good time and the audience did too. In fact, I'd probably pay more than $5 to see them again.

Then I thought, what if The Ten Tenors came onstage and instead of doing their show, they stood before the audience and tried to describe the show and tried to convince the audience of how much fun it was and how beautiful their voices are. What if they said in a boring tone, "We sing and dance and joke and it's wonderful. Is anyone having fun yet?" And then they proceeded to just sit there and there was no other interaction with each other or with the audience. Or worse, what if they began to seriously argue with each other about how they should sit on stage or about Sponge Bob's sexuality and began to hate one another based on their individual opinions about meaningless things? How uncomfortable would that be for the audience? Who would pay $5 for parking to see that? Who would even show up if it was free?

But, I digress. That would never happen, right? That's just plain ridiculous. Check out The Ten Tenors at

Friday, January 28, 2005

Annoying Parents

A very wise and sometimes wiley woman I love reminded me that as a father, one good reason to blog is simply to create something your children can look back on and get to know a part of you they might not otherwise remember. Thank you Miss Judy. Another reason is to write things down about your children so you don't forget them.

Just after the New Year Stephanie and I took Rainey to Six Flags for Holiday in the Park. Here's a tip: Do not attend Holiday in the Park at Six Flags Over Texas on the last day it's open. None of the shows were running, the 4-D Sponge Bob experience was shown in 2-D and the employees were tolerating the guests at best. Never the less, Rainey had a wonderful time and on the way home declared that she would like some ice cream. Allow me to set the scene for you. I'm in the drivers seat, Steph is the co-pilot and Rainey is in her car seat in the middle of the back seat.

Rainey: I want some ice cream.
Stephanie: Well, if you eat a good supper when we get home you can have some.
Rainey: No, I just want the ice cream!
Stephanie: Well, if you can't behave maybe you can't have any ice cream at all.
Rainey: You're annoying.
Stephanie: What did you say?
Rainey: You are annoying.
Stephanie: Do you know what that means?
Rainey: It means nobody wants to be around you. Everybody is writing about it. It's in all the papers.
Stephanie (hurt): That is not a very nice thing to say and it hurt my feelings.
Stephen (stifling a laugh): Rainey, if you can't be nice maybe you should just be quiet for the rest of the trip home.
Rainey (under her breath): I guess you're annoying too.

I related to my daughter in that moment. I empathized with her. It is annoying when you don't get your way and can't understand why. When your ice cream dreams are crushed by authorities with no good explanation of why they should not be pursued. Which brings me to this elders meeting I attended last week at my church...but that's for another time.

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Why I Write

When I was in college, I took an English class in which we studied a book called Eight Modern Essayists. I loved the class and remember reading an essay by Joan Didion called Why I Write. She encouraged the reader to say those words out loud, why...I...write. When you say them aloud the sound you hear is I...I...I. Why I Write. I, I, I. How conceded of us to think that anyone else would have any interest whatsoever in what we have to say. And yet here I am, marching into the land of the blog. I will not blog daily as I have not the fortitude for it, but I hope those of you who see this will at least have to wonder about me, possibly re-evaluate me and at best get to know me pretty well.

I like to laugh, I cry at Hallmark commercials, I love musical theatre AND sports, I have been married to the same woman for nearly nine years, we have a 3 year old daughter, and try as they might, my parents did not ruin my life. In fact, I have a fairly healthy relationship with them to this day. That may not make me sound unique, but read it again in the context of our current culture and I think you'll find out that I am freakish.

Happy blogging! I look forward to future weirdness and truth.