She (1,188)

June 25th, 2011

She showed up at the Jesus House in Cincinnati. It was a large apartment complex that was owned, I think, by Cincinnati Bible Seminary, and was the lodging for some young male students who decided to start a Friday night coffee house, partially to have fellowship with young humans in the area, but mostly as a ploy to meet cute girls. Snacks were laid out, which consisted of everything with preservatives, sugar and flour that should not be inserted into the human body but still feels pretty good sliding down.

Our group, Soul Purpose, was young, hungry and desperate for gigs, so we were thrilled when we found out about the Jesus House, and scheduled it about once a month, making the 108-mile trek from our home, spending $6.25 of 1975 gas round trip, usually garnering an offering off of the poor students of about fourteen or fifteen dollars—thus doubling our profit.

She was there one Friday night when we performed. I immediately loved her because she was a big fan and thought we were the greatest. It’s really difficult to be critical of people who adore you. We often succeed in doing it with family members and even our lovers and spouses, but it really takes a lot of nerve, effort and gall.

She talked a lot. I didn’t notice so much the first night because we had just met and you figure that nervousness causes people to be overly verbose. But we saw her again a month later and she was still talking as if the conversation had never ended. Maybe, in her world, it hadn’t.

Shortly after that second meeting, one of the young ladies in our group decided to pursue the path of matrimony instead of music, so we had an opening. We didn’t know she could sing, but when we came to the Jesus House that particular Friday night, we audaciously decided to hold auditions after the concert, and she volunteered, sang for us and pretty well knocked us on our asses. We hired her on the spot.

She was a free spirit, so she had absolutely no problem with abandoning her home and moving up I-71 to where we lived, and co-habitating with us as we tried to find ways to make enough money to eat on and maybe give a token representation towards paying our rent.

We started to travel—not because we had gigs—more because we heard that’s what groups do, and it was a great way for us to escape our landlord, who for some reason, did not seem satisfied with our token payments. There is one thing about the road when you don’t have money—innovation is not an action of cleverness, but rather, a means of survival.

So we started to write. We learned how to book gigs so we could actually make enough money to buy a bag of pretzels with our baloney sandwich. In the process of doing these engagements, we got better. For let me tell you—the notion that talent exists as pure and dynamic, without pressure being placed upon it, is utterly ridiculous. We not only thought we were getting better, other people told us we were.

She was with me when the Rambos signed my song. She was with me when we recorded a demo tape for Heartwarming Records. She was with me when we appeared on the PTL Club with Jim and Tammy Baker. She was with me when the airport limousine we were traveling in caught fire in the middle of the night in South Carolina. She was with me when we met Marijohn Wilkin and recorded our album at the House of Cash. She was with me when we stepped on the stage at the Grand Ole’ Opry. She was with me when I wrote my Broadway show based on the Sermon on the Mount—Mountain. She was with me when the songs off our album began to chart on the gospel radio stations.

She stayed with me for about four years before she settled back into Cincinnati and resumed her life as a young woman, looking for some form of domestication. She wasn’t very good at it. It happens, you know. I have discovered over the years that the main weakness I see in the female of our species is normally male-oriented. Women are just not very good at finding men who are as smart, motivated and hard-working as they are. She has found a couple of these lesser fellows that have turned her life into a struggle instead of a festival. She has maintained her belief in God, although honestly, she hasn’t matured it beyond its kindergarten origins, to help her graduate to deeper faith.

I love her dearly and only wish that she loved herself enough to abandon the futility of mothering a fully-grown man into maturity. Women must understand—if one lady was not able to do it, having the power of diapers, water, food and shelter over him, they probably will not be able to achieve much better, with just their cute personalities.

She and I have met up over the years and it has always been a great time of reunion, with an embrace and sadness in my soul as she departed, and I knew that she was not content with her life. You know why I hate poverty? Mainly because it makes people believe that they deserve to be poor. That sucks. She has lived in that kind of poverty most of her life—and it makes me sad.

She and I had great fun, great arguments, great moments, great misunderstandings, great music, great corrections and great opportunities.

I am supposed to see her again tonight. I will be looking deep into her eyes for that young girl who attended the Jesus House so many years ago, believing that everything was possible. What will I see?

Yes. What will I see?

Published in: on June 25, 2011 at 2:15 pm  Leave a Comment  
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