Sunday, January 11, 2009

Making the Crossing

The holidays are more officially over now at my house. Right after the New Year we had to focus on the next event, Operation Surprise Shannon, a belated birthday party to bring Shannon together with all those folks who couldn't make it to Vegas (and the one person who did) to watch him turn 40. Donny and Marie couldn't get in because of the weather, but plenty of folks turned out, and he is still surprised.

Putting together the evening was tons of fun and no small feat with the guest of honor occasionally throwing us for a loop. We, in turn, managed to throw him off the trail with a fake invitation asking him to join the Yarn Slut for her birthday (which was in fact on Friday and so thanks are due to her for allowing us to hijack it for this occasion). Donny and Marie were with us in spirit, and my sister joined us from Nashville late night for a truly whirlwind literal 8 hour visit (you'd be surprised at how many people are at the Cleveland Airport at 5:30 on a Sunday morning -- I was!).

Of course, yesterday was also the brunt of one of the worst storms we've had in a while. Suffice it to say that added a layer of excitement to the Day of Adventure. We nonetheless all forged ahead. As I drove across the Turnpike to the party destination, this very appropriate tune came on, one of Tim O'Brien's most famous fiddle tracks, "The Crossing."

This weekend really does mark movement solidly in the new year. Despite the lack of sleep, I felt today that I was back on track. Our friend Shadow/J starts teaching tomorrow, we start a new contract at work, and my house is starting to look and feel like home again (with a few lingering Yankee Candles and festive lights on the mantlepiece for comfort). Daughter started up her ski lessons again last Sunday so is back in her element there. Yarn Slut is planning her wedding, yet another big day to look forward to. The economy is still railing and the world has much work to do as do we all, but life goes on and we must go with it.

Speaking of moving on, I would be remiss not to mention the crossing over of mandolin virtuoso Butch Baldassari, who lost his battle with brain cancer this weekend. He was 56, and probably would have had a few good rolls left in him.

So I'm just wishing you all one more time a truly happy, satisfying, engaging, give-it-your-best-shot New Year. You never know when it will be your last. Hold on to what you still have to lose, let go of the crap that isn't working, and reach into untapped resources you may have forgotten you had. As the saying goes, the best way to predict the future is to create it.

Happy Crossing into 2009 -- And Oh, Hey!! Come see Tim O'Brien 8 p.m. next Friday, Jan. 16 at -- where else?! -- The Kent Stage. We can't wait. What better way to kick off the inaugural weekend?! Maybe he'll play us this one to welcome in the new year, new administration, new deal.

The Crossing

Title track from the 1999 release.


At January 12, 2009 11:22 AM, Blogger Shameless Agitator said...

Hey Mando, here's wishing you a great year as well. This is definitely the year to clean out our lives, eh?

At January 12, 2009 7:55 PM, Anonymous Fearless said...

And after Tim plays the Kent Stage, he goes to Dayton to play a gig with Dan Tyminski and Band.

Started my radio show today. I'm planning to tape and interview with Tim while he's at Kent.

At January 12, 2009 8:48 PM, Blogger Mando Mama said...

Happy New Year to both of you!

Shameless, it's true, time to clean out. A lot has happened in this decade and we should be ready for 2010. Getting back into a routine, I realize how much I missed it! Working out, eating food at reasonable intervals, lol....we need to get together sometime before the year is too much older.

Fearless (ha! Fearless, Shameless....I need more friends with powerful monikers) I am going to miss your show tomorrow but if you run that URL by me one more time I'll pimp the show for those fortunate enough to have a day. Will it be archived??
Yes, the kids and I will be having a Tim night on Friday. It couldn't come at a better time....well, for me, anytime is a good time to sit quietly while Tim does his thing. The kids missed out on a lot this past weekend so we all could use a little Tim-pathy. Looking forward to it and to seeing you in a big way. Is Anita coming?

And hey people, you all could use some Tim time too so come up up/down/over and bring the souls you don't think you have.


At January 13, 2009 10:16 AM, Blogger Blueberry said...

Very sad news about Butch. have fun at the Tim show, hope you aren't snowed in.

At January 13, 2009 10:33 AM, Blogger Mando Mama said...

Hey Blue, we may not be snowed in but it's fixin' to get awful cold here soon. We may take a pass on Tim, sadly; tickets are much more than usual and for all of us to go would be quite a luxury. I'd hate to leave the kids behind, not only because we all love him but because then talking about the sacrifices we have to make is a harder sell. The good news is that Son of Mando has a band trip to NYC coming up (he wasn't in band last semester so we just found out about this expense) which will make missing one Tim show a sacrifice worthy of the cause. If all goes well, my kid will see a Broadway show before I do!

At January 13, 2009 10:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi, taking a chance here, on Dec 17(?), 2006 you made a post called (I think), He's not over idiot.

If you would be so kind, could you email me

I am trying to figure out the reason for a breakup and your post may be my missing link.

I hope to hear from you.

At January 14, 2009 11:18 AM, Blogger Ipsissimus said...

Oh god yes - let's give it one more shot. The years can't keep getting worse, can they? Here's to you Mando - wishing you a great year with a better job and new carpeting! Here's wishing me some good productive writing time and a new chair to replace the couch Bart destroyed during his kidney infection.

Passed on the Tim O'Brien concert to my brother and his wife who are considering going - thanks for the tip!

At January 15, 2009 11:08 AM, Blogger Mando Mama said...

Yes, Ips, here's to us all! I hope your sis can hit the Tim show as it looks more and more like we won't be going. I'm sad but it just feels like a bad time to spend $100 on something the kids and I can't eat. :-( How long before we're out of the woods? Good thing I don't mind the woods.

Hope to see you before the New Year gets too old!!

At January 15, 2009 9:33 PM, Anonymous Fearless Heart said...

Just what the world needs, another blog...

At January 15, 2009 9:49 PM, Blogger Mando Mama said...

Awesome...and about time! There's always room for more blogs on good Irish music! Would you believe, the kids were ALREADY ASKING about the Festival? Helloooooo it's SEVEN MONTHS AWAY!!! LOL...They are good little English children but O! how they love Irish music....


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