I was tagged by Daisy at Compost Happens for another random facts meme (she probably thought I'd forgotten) and I've done a few of these before:
* First, just facts about me
* Then five more things about me (this one was a little boring)
* Then I changed it to Five Childhood Memories
* Then I changed it to Seven Teen Things about Me
* Then I worked with Eight Things about My Marriage
So where to go from there? Then Sandier Pastures hit me with 8 Facts about My Mother and I knew what to do. So here are some facts about my parents (I'm expanding it a bit).
1. There may be some people reading this who know my parents, my father has the image of being rather serious but that's only because his coworkers don't see the other side of him. The one that can burp "Stars and Stripes Forever." When I was in second grade we took a trip up the Alaska-Canadian highway (the Alcan) which was days of driving through the wilds of Canada on mostly hilly unpaved roads with nothing but the Canadian wilderness for company and Dad kept us entertained with his musical prowess. Well maybe not musical. He burped until he was hoarse--is that possible??
2. Music has always been a big part of our family. In fact, my father is a die-hard rocker who, as a proper child of the 60s, introduced me to the wonders of Credence Clearwater Revival, Eric Clapton, Crosby Stills Nash and Young, the Doors, Jimmi Hendrix and of course The Beatles. You might say I was raised on Beatles and Cream. Why do you think I was named Michelle? (Lucky for me they didn't go with Prudence, Eleanor or Rita).
Mom's favorite Beatles' song is "Norwegian Wood" and she favors their earlier music such as Hard Day's Night and Dad's is "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" from the White Album. Mine? "A Day in the Life" from Sergeant Pepper's. Speaking of the White Album, Dad used to like to tweak Mom by loudly and gutturally singing "Why Don't We Do it in the Road?" just to hear her say, "MEL!" in her shocked not-in-front-of-the-kids sort of voice.
3. I remember one evening coming home with Dad and pulling into the garage with the radio cranked and him forcing me to stay in the car to finish listening to Pete Frampton's synthesized voice wailing like a guitar.
"Isn't that amazing?" Dad said, his car rocking with the beat. I smiled and nodded, happy to be enjoying good music together. Dad was convinced that the sound really was Frampton's guitar (this was the time before music videos) and it wasn't until several years later that I realized the truth but never bothered to tell him--why mess with a man's heroes, you know?
4. As I got older Dad kept his rocker roots and even today loves anything with a strong R&B riff--preferably with a sultry, slightly hoarse woman's voice. Think Bonnie Raitt, Pat Benetar, or Joan Jett or the manly ZZ Top in the 80s. As a teen, it was always pleasant to be awoken on a Saturday morning by my father's music cranked loud enough to make the walls vibrate. "Dad, could you turn down the music?"
Even today he loves rock and roll (he doesn't do ballads) and is my source for much of my music. Body Rockers, The Killers, Moby, Collective Soul, Evanescence, over the years many of my favorite bands have first been introduced to me by my Dad--though he tends to like harder stuff than I do. He'll come across songs, burn them onto CDs and bring them over, saying, "Do do you like this?" He's got pretty good taste too. My kids have the only Grandpa on the block listening to Good Charlotte and Liz Phair.
5. My mother, on the other hand, has more refined taste and gave me my first taste of opera (which I also love). Instead of waking me up with her wall-shaking tunes she was more likely to be found singing, "O What a Beautiful Morning!" in the kitchen over breakfast. I learned a lot of obscure lyrics to quite a collection of show tunes thanks to her and can now pass on the love by singing these to my own children. Who are just about as impressed as I was. Mom and I have songs for every occasion.
6. However, Dad's memory in the music department is not to be trusted and his lyrics are guaranteed to be unique--he just can't ever quite get them right. In fact, my parents (who are both BYU alumni) raised me with the BYU fight song--"Rise and shout! The cougars are out . . . " regularly sung at appropriate family occasions (rather like "Stars and Stripes Forever," right?) Only trouble is, after 18 years of hearing Dad's stirring school spirit when I finally got to BYU and attended my first football game and BYU scored that first touchdown all 55,000 fans rose to sing the fight song in unison and I was the ONLY one singing the wrong words. Thanks Dad. I was a dork.
7. Only thing is, I don't get my infusion of music from them lately now that they're living in India. Apparently Bangalore, even being the Land of the Sitar, doesn't carry quite the musical inspiration that Robert Plant and Pink Floyd do. Nowadays Mom and Dad are more likely hopping around from Delhi to Mombai to Chennai to Goa to Sri Lanka--in fact, this September Mom and Dad spent their 40th wedding anniversary in Nepal. Didn't see that coming. Do you think they sang Bob Seger's song "Katmandu"? Because I hear it whenever I think of them there.
I miss you Mom and Dad.
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