Saturday, June 13, 2009


It was bound to happen. Sooner or later. Better later than never. After nearly three years of working the field in Buenos Aires, swinging with a succession of players -- some great, some not-so-great, none quite right -- something, make that someone, has gotten hold of my heart.

I first noticed something was off when those sad songs that normally say so much to me started to say less and less. No more somebody done somebody wrong songs. All I wanted to hear was the gooey, sappy stuff. Hey, Mr. DJ. Put a record on. I wanna think about my baby. "The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face." "Ive Fallen In Love With You." "All Is Full Of Love." Oh, this crazy little thing called love.

To be honest, it's all slightly disconcerting. Suddenly, my head is no longer clear. Someone has moved in, dominating my thoughts. He's far from being an unwanted visitor -- he can stay as long as he'd like -- but he keeps me up at night. And when I fall asleep, there he goes again, invading my dreams. I wake up, he's back again. Other thoughts come, other thoughts go. He sticks around.

He showed up a few days after my birthday. We'd spoken before, sporadically, then he just kind of disappeared. It's like I woke up one day, and there he was again, the biggest best birthday present ever. I fell fast and hard, and to my delight and surprise, the feelings were mutual. There was none of the game playing that I'd come to expect from guys in Buenos Aires. This one laid his feelings out on the line from day one, and let me know that I could do the same.

Unfortunately, physical logistics are not on our side. He lives 30 minutes away by car, and he has a life. But for now, that might be a good thing. It forces us to take things slowly. When romance is first in bloom, we're all tempted to spend every waking moment with the object of our affection. But that's neither healthy nor is it a recipe for longevity. Anyway, I need my space, my alone time, and I've been around long enough to know that nothing worth having ever comes without a little effort -- and a little waiting.

A little waiting. I'm not sure how Hollywood stars do it. Spending months apart, cramming in together time every now and then. What's the point? The whole idea of being with someone is spending time with them. Modern technology allows us to be in contact with the ones we love as often as we want to be, but nothing beats face to face. No wonder A-list marriages rarely last for long. Something, someone's got to give. One career has to be back burnered. Absence makes the heart grow fonder, but out of sight, out of mind. As the late great country singer Sammi Smith once sang, "Cheating comes so easy to the woman who spends all her time alone." Of course, the lonely lady in "Cheating's A Two-Way Street" was only giving as good as she got.

I'm not convinced that love had anything to do with it. Here and now, though, love is all around. In the music I play. In the thoughts running through my head. Falling was the easy part (despite spending a good two years out of love). Now how do we keep the music playing? I'm so out of practice. I'm not accustomed to thinking for two. But love or something like it's got a hold of me, making this one challenge that I'm totally up for.
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