Monday, November 12, 2007

Roger Miller, my father, and my weekend.

The tagline "Where have all the average people gone" is from a Roger Miller song. The lyrics talk about how people from other perspectives think of him as an outsider, and he is simply just being who he is. It is one of my personal favorites, and one that I identify with a lot.
This past weekend my father was in town for the weekend with his wife, and they are nice folks and I love them, but we have very little in common. This makes spending time with them exhausting. There was an effort every minute to find some common ground, something to talk about. Sometimes that makes me feel disenfranchised from my own past. Like I have no history, no ground under my feet.
To make a point, to get the benefit of the doubt, or occasionally for the amusement of other people, I play up my Missouri roots. My redneck background, but that's not really who I am. I love Hank and Haggard, I have had a job since I was 11 years old, I drive an old ford pick-up, but I also have a degree in world literature. I like Kafka and Henry Miller as much as David Allen Coe and Roger Miller. In short, I am complicated.
Some days I feel like I'm isolated, a man without a country. Fortunately I have great friends and a wife who even if they don't understand where I've come from exactly, we're headed in the same direction. If I think of that abstractly it's easy to lose sight of what a powerful statement someone makes when they choose to be your friend, lover, wife, husband. It's easy for some people to take that for granted, I try never to be one of those people.
It's funny I don't fit, where have all the average people gone?

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