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Pensive Person

Pensive Person
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December 05
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A quiet guy up here in the Midwest, waiting to be seen. Most of the time my days are filled with sarcasm, anger, and general malaise--so, this is my inexpensive form of therapy.

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APRIL 6, 2012 2:33AM

When love arrived at the state fair

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Sometimes you hear a song on the radio and you hunt down the band to hear more, other times someone will tell you about a song and share the music with you, and other times music shows up at a time you least expect it to matter. It is often those unexpected moments where music can change your life. This was one of those times...

People do not realize that the heat in Minnesota is often as bad as it is in Texas; the humidity causes people to wish for the ability to ring out their flesh like sponges.

At the Minnesota State Fair the heat typically is unberable; that year was no exception. In the open air theater a group was about to perform. The seating--aluminum benches that would cause skin to sizzle, and few people were brave enough to test the structural integrity of their clothing. My mother, surly, sweaty and swearing about the day and the inability to find a thirst quenching novelty on a stick; my father, reticent and hunched over, tried to pacify the latest of her legendary rants.

My sister bounded ahead and plopped down on a bench in the back row shaded by a large oak tree.  She didn't know a concert was about to start; her feet hurt.

We all followed suit, and the coolness of the shade revitalized us. People filed past, dinner time approached and many had been at the fair all day. The day guests were leaving and the younger, rambunctious night crowd was slowly filtering in, heading directly toward the midway.

My people watching was interrupted by two men and two women walking onto the stage; all four of us had forgotten the clam shell amphitheater, and then they opened their mouths and started singing a tribute to The Mamas and the Papas.

The heat of day was buffered by softness in the air, and a cool breeze started to rattle the leaves in applause. This was a group my parents knew and loved. Under that tree, they revisited memories of high school parties in the woods and driving rural roads with radio blaring, windows rolled down despite the chill in the air. Their talk floated over my head and sparkled with a life of its own in a space between the ground and sky.

Even the music became more tangible as my parents injected each song with meaning and worth. Time slowed down as we sat there almost to the point that it was turning backward, and though my parents watched the singers and ignored us, my sister and I stared at them in complete silence.

What we were witnessing was a transformation. When one of the girl singers started to sing a love ballad, my mother reached over and started to pet and gently scratch the back of my father's head. They spoke only through glances and at one point my father reached over and held my mother's hand, their hands linked together until the end of the song and even then they did not break their hold when the applause started.  

After that moment, I knew love was real....and The Mamas and the Papas have been one of my favorite bands ever since.

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Comments

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A love-ly tale, beautifully told. Damn boy! You can write some!

;-)
.
Another fine post.

I love the Mamas and the Papas too. : )
Tales are all in the telling..
This one was told craftily well...
One of those great moments and thanks for telling it the way you did...
Summer, a State Fair, and the Mamas and Papas--you took me back there with you. I sing along every time I hear one of their songs. I have California Dreamin in my head right now, although I think it should be Dedicated to the One I Love. Great post.
Agree with skypixeo. 100%.
Well done Pensive. My dad was from Minnesota, and we'd go quite a bit to visit in summer, so it brought back good memories. Also bad ones, because that is when I became a Vikings fan.
Well done Pensive. My dad was from Minnesota, and we'd go quite a bit to visit in summer, so it brought back good memories. Also bad ones, because that is when I became a Vikings fan.
Thanks for this story and for relating the fact that Minnesota heat can be as intense as Texas heat. But then the cold comes in the winter. Usually.

Just wonder if any of the Mamas or Papas had a Pronto Pup while at the fair.
words of love so, soft and tender - it's the humidity
Gosh, that was lovely.
Thanks all for stopping by... pronto pups *shiver* ewwww.... jeez, Mary, now that conjures no memory except the bad taste in my mouth hours after consuming one of those blasted things.... lol :0
Wow. This is lovely. You've made me want to write about my own state fair experience.
I've never been to a state fair, but I can relate to music showing up at a least expected time to matter, and affecting one's life. Thank you for sharing this.
R♥