Sunday, October 16, 2005

Cowboy Up

Pictured above, from left to right: me, Steve Sellers (North Carolina), Parker Stephen, one of my roommates (Florida), Tony LeRud (Minnesota, attended Tabor in Hillsboro, KS), and Matt Esswein (SoCal).

Friday evening we rounded up the lasses and had ourselves a good ol' time at the Fall 2005 Barn Dance. We line danced. We swing danced. We even square danced. A wonderful time was had by all. We even had a square dance caller. That was a good thing, because I was pretty sure that I wasn't going to fully recall everything from my yearly square dancing unit from grade school physical education. All my fellow QH schoolmates - you know what I'm talkin' 'bout. Is it possible to dedicate a dance to someone after you do it? Well, I'd like to dedicate Friday evening's square dance to Mrs. Alber, without whose instruction all those years ago I would have approached Friday evening's festivities with much fear and trepidation. Instead, I was able to grab my partner, spin her 'round an' 'round, and even do the right-to-left grand, knowing in my heart that I was hip to be a square dancer. Mrs. Alber, to you I say, "Props."

I've been growing out my beard all semester long. It was fun while it lasted. I decided, against my better judgment, to fashion my man-whiskers into a combination of chops, a soul patch, and a fu manchu. My facial hair stylings were warmly received. Actually, I think people just felt sorry for me because I looked so ridiculous. But I'm glad I did it. You only live once, right? I hope there are barn dances in heaven.

Well, before I ski'daddle on off to bed, I'd like to recite, from memory, the words from the best half-cowboy/half-sentimental New Englander song I know. It's a gem by James Taylor, entitled "Sweet Baby James":

(not including the sentimental New Englander half of the song)

There is a young cowboy, who lives on the range
His horse and his cattle are his only companions
He works in the saddle and he sleeps in the canyons
Waiting for summer, his pastures to change

And as the moon rises he sits by his fire
Thinkin' about women and glasses of beer
And closin' his eyes as the doggies retire
He sings out a song which is soft, but it's clear
As if maybe someone could hear...

Goodnight, ya moonlight ladies
Rock-a-bye sweet baby James
Deep greens and blues are the colors I choose
Won't ya let me go down in my dreams
An' rock-a-bye sweet baby James


The Bearded said...

Square dancing, eh? Might have to give it a shot one of these days. I'm planning on taking some swing dance lessons in the near future (they start Friday). I've wanted to learn for some time now and finally have the time to do so.

Today was the annual fall picnic. You were missed. I think we had AN undergrad show. Otherwise nothing but grad students and professors. Not sure why we can never get undergrads to show. Are we really that intimidating?

I have a mid-term tomorrow that I'm a bit nervous about. Aren't you glad you're done with that for the time being?

jenni said...

yes, props to Mrs. Alber! the square dance unit was always a good time! :) i think you had the best cowboy get-up in the picture. you went all out with the facial hair! i'm proud. :) i bet you had so much fun swing dancing, huh? i'm sure they were all impressed with your amazing skills. three cheers for barn dances in heaven! :) props to YOU on the quotation of james taylor's lyrics. you've gotta stay true to your roots. :) i must go now. much love, my brother!

ps - sam said he enjoys talking to you on the phone, because he kind of feels like he's talking to himself. ha! :)

Manda said...

The barn dance has to be one of my most favorite FOFI memories. my jealousy level just went up exponentially. I'm so glad you're having a blast.
You're loved! Manda

ashley said...

Matthew - Kudos to you for beginning Sweet Baby James - and to finish off one the greatest songs ever...

Now the first of December was covered with snow
So was the turnpike from Stockridge to Boston.
And the berkshears seemed dreamlike on acconut of that frostin'
With 10 miles behind me, and 10,000 more to go.

So goodnight, you moonlight ladies
Rock-a-bye sweet baby James.
Deep greens and blues are the colors I choose
Won't ya let me go down in my dreams,
And rock-a-bye sweet baby James.

Manda said...

i believe it is our favorite cowboy's birthday...or was, or will be shortly... Happy Birthday!

Manda said...

Matthew- I can't remember if graduation is this week or next... and in any case everything is a blur and you want to spend time loving on these new lifelong friends, but I just wanted to let you know I'm still thinking and praying for your time and your friends. I hope you spent your time in the relational end of things. You'll walk away, but the Institute never really leaves you. You're loved, friend. Manda

The Bearded said...

Merry Christmas!

Tomorrow, I take my last final EVER! Good feeling, really.

Hope the semester went well and have fun over the holidays.

The Bearded

ps--do you plan on writing ever again?

Baidgeegirl said...

I had such a nice time at our Barn dance. You did good with the blog and totally country-ing it out! It's really cool! I didn't feel bad for your beard! It looked cool! And I mean that ! Anyways...have a good one. Love always, Laura