Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Great Gifts: Xmas 2009

Karst, a great guy at the park, passed by my desk on Christmas Eve morning. He was singing some words that my ears could hardly believe he would know:

They wouldn't let Jack Johnson on board
They said this ship don't haul no coal,
Sail away Titanic, sail away.

Words that I could hardly believe anyone I might come across these days would know, let alone someone walking just a couple feet away from me; for one thing, I would have thought Karst to be maybe 15 or 20 years too young to have had a chance to become familiar with the song.

"Oh my god," I said, "I heard that song on the radio just once and that was like back in 1970 ... I love that song!"

It was when I lived in Ann Arbor; it was a Saturday afternoon, and I was listening to Detroit's cool FM station.

I think Karst was was as tickled as I was that another guy knew "Legend of the U.S.S. Titanic." He said he was a DJ on his college's radio station and that he had "played the hell" out of the album the song is from: Jamie Brockett's "Remember the Wind and the Rain".

And while it's true I never did hear the 13 minutes and 28 seconds of that song again on the radio I did run right out and buy the album it was on. I still have it, and it's pictured below. But I haven't owned a turntable for about 20 years so hadn't heard it for a long long time.

I think Jamie Brockett is great. I don't know why he didn't become a big star; other songs on the album, besides "Legend of the U.S.S. Titanic" are great too; I've read that Jamie Brockett had problems with his record company. Way too bad.

When I was closing up shop on Christmas Eve there was an envelope on my desk. On it was written "George - Merry Xmas - Karst". I opened the envelope. I now owned a CD of "Remember the Wind and the Rain".

I've "played the hell" out of that CD since then. Great music ... great memories ... sweet nostalgia for an Ann Arbor Saturday afternoon.

And an even bigger appreciation for a guy named Karst. He's kind of new at the park ... I'm sure glad they hired him.

Another Christmas treat was that I got to see and have my picture taken with Melissa, Mark's niece, and one of my friends on Facebook. She's beautiful, and she fascinates me. She's wonderfully articulate and emotionally expressive, characteristics that I -- often socially clumsy and emotionally stunted -- admire and envy. I think some of the things she writes on Facebook could be worked up to become powerful poems. She doesn't imagine herself becoming a poet. I do though.


  1. Hey George this is your favourite girl Flowers. How are you doing. You look really Great.......Cute picture..

  2. You are too kind but that was nice of you to say. I think I'll stick to appreciating all the great literature there is to be enjoyed. As always when I see you, I had a wonderful time talking to you. You are quite modest but sincerely interesting!