A Christmas Kick To The Badonkadonk

Throw another log on the fire and gather the young ‘uns..I’d like to tell y’all a story of the night a modern day Scrooge was slayed by the country music star.

It all started back in October when I received a series of excited texts from Joe..”I won tickets to a concert!”  He had never heard of the singer, and neither had I…but he was going to the concert, by gosh, because in his 50 years of life this was the first contest he had ever won and he was going to see “Trace” whatever his name is, and sweetly said we could have a real date night, just us two.  Yee-haw.

A quick “Trace Adkins” google  revealed that ..get ready..he was touring a Christmas concert.  A Christmas concert in November.  Have I mentioned lately that Christmas music before December 24th generally makes me anxious and depending on my level of holiday preparedness could provoke any number of personality disorders that are lying dormant in a charred part of my soul?  A quick survey of friends and strangers revealed that everyone in the universe has heard of Trace Adkins, the man who is famous for singing about that “Honky Tonk Badonkadonk”..a song that is dedicated to the adoration of the firm fannies of country gals in teeny- tiny shorts.  Now, imagining a concert of epic hillbilly proportions,  I encouraged Joe to give the tickets to someone who loved the man..what a nice gesture it would be..a thoughtful surprise for a deserving friend.  Nope..he was going.  Sell the tickets, I urged..to the highest bidder!  He flinched, but ultimately didn’t budge.  Dang it, looked like my badonkadonk was headed to the big show.

We arrived to the grand old Lyric Opera House in Baltimore City and were immediately struck by the sight of Trace’s humongous tour buses taking up two blocks. Just pull over boys.. like they were at a road-side bar.  I was already chuckling and preparing myself for a yuk-yuk fest.

The yuk-yuk was on me, apparently.  When I took my seat in the balcony overlooking the stage and under a beautiful, harp carrying angel I began to have a stirring of emotion that I now recognize as a good sign.  Something good was happening…I could feel it.lyric angel

A string quartet, four gorgeous young women opened for Trace, combining amazingly beautiful music with humor and warmth, and explained the Celtic twist to the Christmas music that would be played in the show.  Have I mentioned that Saint Patrick’s Day is my favorite holiday and we start playing Irish music on December 26th around here?  When Alyth McCormack, a singer from Ireland, who performs with The Chieftains came out and floored us with her traditional Celtic songs, I’m fairly certain that was when my mouth fell open for the remainder of the show.

By the time the six-foot-six, hunka burning love Trace Adkins, who I had no idea existed a week earlier but was now a God to me, strolled onto the stage,I was floating outside my body feeling more in tune with the topless angel above me. Perhaps, I thought, the angel had already seen his show, and had thrown her bra at him, as I’m sure he is not unaccustomed to such behavior, Christmas or not.   But, seriously, when he started singing in his impossibly deep, reverent and beautiful voice, and telling the ancient stories that accompany the carols that we all know so well..the tears began to fall.

It was a beautiful thing to be reminded of the Christmas Truce of 1914..when German and British soldiers during WWI, who had been killing each other all day , began singing “Silent Night” or “Stille Nacht” in their trenches, and joined together in song, meeting each other in the middle, shared personal items and goodwill, and then went back to battle the next day.  I wept and squeezed Joe’s hand, he leaned over and whispered “you’re glad you came, aren’t you?”  He had no idea.  trace adkins

I had no idea, until today, Black Friday, how glad I was that I went to a Christmas show in November against my will.  I had to go out..I actually needed to go out.  I never, ever go shopping on Black Friday..but there I was..in a store with Christmas music blaring.  Look, I won’t lie..I almost lost it during what seemed like a twenty minute version of Mariah Carey’s “All I Want For Christmas Is You”.  Torture.  All I want for Christmas is for YOU TO SHUT UP, was all I was thinking.  But, some Christmas decorations caught my eye, a sparkly  pillow that said “Joy” and some glittery candles..and I didn’t turn away..I actually purchased them. Wow..you just don’t know.  When I returned to my car, shiny, happy items in hand, and the radio was playing  Pachelbel Canon in D by the Trans Siberian Orchestra..I turned it up, not off.  Who am I?

I’m ready to put a tree up.

My family is confused.

Beau uncertain about my new found Christmas Spirit.

Beau uncertain about my new found Christmas Spirit.

The Thin Mint…The Right Cookie At The Right Time.

I will be honest with you, my fellow Americans… and let me be perfectly clear..this election season saw my patriotism and faith in my country’s political process at an all time low.

Frankly, Scarlett..I didn’t give a rat’s ass.

I used to eat and sleep the news, and relished watching people blather and foam at the mouth, while having political shouting matches that chased my family from the TV room, leaving me alone in my caffeine-fueled, psycho world.  It doesn’t get any better than election year for a cable news junkie.

That was the old me.  Cable news watching, newspaper toting girl tore up her Republican voter ID, and re-registered Independent.  It was my way of sending a message to our leaders..I’m sure they all lost several seconds of sleep over my exodus. See, in my fantasy world, everyone in America abandons the “Left” and the “Right”, forcing everyone to the “Center”.  I sure do love the “Center” and all it’s glorious gray areas.  Heck, even the word “gray” is gray..’cause sometimes it’s “grey”..we gray folks don’t care how you spell it.  Like my Dad always said..there’s two sides to every story kiddo.

Truthfully, I nearly missed voting.  It required some serious extra effort on my part to make it the polls and my apathy was about to win out, until my son asked me if I was going to vote.  I thought about lying to him for a second, or just telling him that I was fed up with the whole shooting match..but I stopped short.  I didn’t want to buzz-kill a thirteen year old’s awakening to the process..and I want him to learn to think for himself..not repeat his mother’s jaded views, as so many children will do. Anyway, I have already convinced them to hate the New York Yankees..my work is done.

So, I voted…and I am so glad I did.

When I arrived to the polls, there was the usual assortment of politicians and  their supporters, shaking hands and shoving their pamphlets into my hands.  I like to brush past them, tossing remarks like “well, if I haven’t decided who I am voting for yet, I probably shouldn’t even be here”… smug stuff like that. I have to have some fun.  Pushing past the faithful, I came upon a loud, giggling band of Girl Scouts who were set up at a table, selling their delicious, evil little cookies which I am powerless at resisting.  All of them talking at once..excitedly asking me to vote for my favorite cookie while they kept a running tally on their poster board.

No one tried to pressure me or bad mouth any of the cookies.  A sweet girl with glasses and a serious expression waited patiently, marker poised at her poster, to record my vote.  When I exclaimed “Thin Mint!”, she beamed and made her slash mark and then reaching up to my shoulder, placed her hand there, looked me dead in the eyes, and said “thank you”.  I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry.  What  a joy these Girl Scouts were..and even something more important…faith restorers.

The Girl Scouts reminded why I should vote.  Their excitement about the process was contagious, I went into the booth smiling, voting proudly.

I’m so glad I voted.  Now, that half a box of cookies I had for breakfast..not so much…sigh.

girl scoutsgirl scouts cookie box