Either fatherhood or old age has made me soft(er). Or maybe its both. But i’ve come to this conclusion based on the fact that I now have a tolerance for country music.
Now, I’ve never really been a man’s man. I’ve never chewed tobacco, and i’ve never been in a fight. I’ve never wrestled a steer to the ground, and when it comes time to change the oil in my car, I’d rather take it to Wal-Mart than do it myself.
However, there are some “man” things i’m guilty of. I DO scratch myself. A LOT. I DO occasionally need someone to pick up after me (sorry, hon). I DO watch and play a lot of sports, and i DO only pretend to listen to my wife about 50% of the time she’s talking (sorry, hon).
But what i DONT do is get emotional about things.
I think the last time i cried was when my daughter Presley was born. Before that, I cant remember the last time. Even when my son Aevin was born, I shed no tears. Had to set an example, right? Men dont cry, boy!
Now, back to country music.
It seems to me that country music is a more emotional kind of music than I’m used to. i’m used to rocking out to classic or punk rock, or even getting my groove on to 90’s hip hop. Happy, fun, get out of your seat, energetic music.
Some country songs are like that, i guess. But most of the songs that i’ve heard are sad, with someone dying, or growing up, or getting old. Heck, you could say that they sing about “real life”. Wheres the fun in that? I used to scoff at country songs. i mean, who wants to be sad when theyre listening to music?
Aint noone got time for that!
Until i got married and had kids. NOW i can kind of relate to these songs. An example:
Stefanie (my wife) and I are in the car with the family, and Stef is driving. She puts it on KUZZ (the country station) and a song is starting.
“Awwww i LOVE this song” she says. And thats usually my cue to change the station, but this time i’m rebuked. “just listen to it, you’ll like it.” Fine. But only because youre driving.
So the singing starts and i’m rolling my eyes. Typical woe is me boohoo country song. Jeez, who cares. then the chorus starts: “there goes my life” yeah, well dude, ya shoulda thought of that before!
2nd verse starts. Hmmm. My throat is getting a little scratchy. I start getting fidgety. I start tapping my leg. Its getting to me. then the chorus again: “there goes my life”. Alright dude. I’m starting to feel you now. I get ya.
3rd verse. Uh oh. What the hell is going on with me?? I’m actually getting choked up here! Wha?? Thank God i have sunglasses on! Breathe. Woo. Woo. Look out the window, count some cows or something. Get your mind off the lyrics. And then the music slows and heres the chorus one last time: “there goes my life”. Ooooooh no. no no no no no. Stop. Get a hold of yourself, Kevin. Think about something else! Football. Work. An action movie! Saving Private Ryan! yeah, thats it! Explosions! Machine guns! Storm the beach! But isnt it sad at the end when Tom Hanks dies and hes like “dont waste it” to Ryan, and now Ryan has all this pressure on him to make something of his life since all those dudes died to save him? Well, yeah, that IS kinda……no, wait! NO, BRAIN! Its NOT sad! What are you doing to me here?? Who’s side are you on??? AHHHHHHH LA LA LA LA LA LA IM NOT LISTENING LALALALA
“Wasnt that a good song?”
I shrug. Eh. It was ok.
Apparently the country music landscape is littered with songs like this. And now that i have kids, i’m starting to actually LIKE them. I sympathize with them now. i understand these songs. I get it now.
Now, does that mean I’ll be listening to KUZZ in my car when i’m cruising by myself?
Too hard to drive when i’m bawling my dang eyes out.