In Celebration of Country Music

Written by on November 7, 2013 in Celebrations - No comments
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I’ve always told my liberal, East Coast friends that if they want a better understanding of America (the red, so-called flyover states), they should watch the Country Music Awards shows.  Last night was the all-star CMA (Country Music Association) broadcast.  The songs, styles, personalities and dispositions of this American art form offers a unique window about how “regular people” think about relationships, family, community and country.  For instance the opening number, with co-hosts Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley, offered a critique of ObamaCare and nod to the uber-popular Duck Dynasty reality show.

In trying to gain a better appreciation of the country music genre, I recently downloaded Toby Keith’s “Greatest Hits” album.  Keith, a native of tornado ravaged Moore Oklahoma, has a patriotic, but bad boy image, in my estimation.  I came upon the life-affirming message in “My List,” the lyrics and video are included below.  The basic message is simple:  life is short—don’t set aside the meaningful moments of pleasure and love, in exchange for marking off another task on the never-ending to do task list we all carry, in paper form and on our mind:

“My List”

Under an old brass paperweight is my list of things to do today
Go to the bank and the hardware store, put a new lock on the cellar door
I cross ‘m off as I get ‘em done but when the sun is set
There’s still more than a few things left I haven’t got to yet

Go for a walk, say a little prayer
Take a deep breath of mountain air
Put on my glove and play some catch
It’s time that I make time for that
Wade the shore and cast a line
Look up a long lost friend of mine
Sit on the porch and give my girl a kiss
Start livin’, that’s the next thing on my list

Wouldn’t change the course of fate but cuttin’ the grass just had to wait
‘Cause I’ve got more important things like pushin’ my kid on the backyeard swing
I won’t break my back for a million bucks I can’t take to my grave
So why put off tomorrow what I could get done today.

Go for a walk, say a little prayer
Take a deep breath of mountain air
Put on my glove and play some catch
It’s time that I make time for that
Wade the shore and cast a line
Look up a long lost friend of mine
Sit on the porch and give my girl a kiss
Start livin’, that’s the next thing on my list

Raise a little hell, laugh ‘til it hurts
Put an extra five in the plate at church
Call up my folks just to chat
It’s time that I make time for that
Stay up late, then oversleep
Show her what she means to me
Catch up on all the things I’ve always missed
Just start Livin’, that’s the next thing on my list

Under an old brass paperweight
Is my list of things to do today.

About the Author

Life-Cycle Celebrant Sarah Ritchie respects all faiths. She has received diplomas from the Celebrant Foundation & Institute, USA, where she now serves as a faculty member. Sarah wants to lead the way in creating a ceremony that reflects you, your love, and all the things that you hold most dear in the world. She lives in New York City, but brings along a hospitality that she attributes to her home, Oklahoma. In addition to this work that she adores, she devotes herself to a variety of charities on issues relating to education, children, health, and the arts.

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