Thursday, May 1, 2014

Rant #1,198: The Gift of Love

Let's forget about Donald Sterling right now.

He appears to be history already, even though he hasn't sold his team yet.

And I heard that Rush Limbaugh kind of agrees with me, there may have been some conspiracy involved in getting Sterling moved out of his ownership position.

Strange bedfellows ... .

Anyway, let's backtrack a little bit.

Let's talk about something happier, like my birthday.

As you know, it was on Monday, and I am very happy to be 57 years old.

But I never spoke about what I actually received as gifts for my birthday.

I got a little money from some family members, including my parents and my aunt.

I got a nice T-shirt from my wife and son, and a gift certificate, which segues right into the gift that I am going to tell you about now.

As you know, I am an avid believer that vinyl is the only recording medium through which to listen to rock and roll.

CDs are handy, music files are even handier, but if you want to get the full thrust of rock and roll, you absolutely must listen to it on vinyl.

The gift certificate that they got me was from my local record store, which sells used records, new records, and yes, CDs too, and the T-shirt I got is one that shows my love for vinyl records, proclaiming that right on the front of the shirt.

But my wife did that one better. She got me a gift that I really, really appreciate.

We were in that local record store on Record Store Day, which was on April 19, and we were hoping to get one of the specials that were offered during that day--there was such a line for those records that we never got to them.

I managed to find some things to add to my collection, some old 45s and LPs that I just had to have.

I also bought her a Judy Garland multi-disk set that was pretty good, and certainly great for the price. I talked about that one a few Rants back.

Anyway, what she bought me was something else, really something else, something that I would not have bought for myself.

She got me a pretty rare record from the era of Beatlemania, but although it is linked up with the Beatles, no Beatles are on the record.

She bought me one of the two singles released by the Beatles' producer, George Martin, and his orchestra to coincide with the release of the film "A Hard Day's Night."

These are instrumentals only, and they are are for "Ringo's Theme (This Boy)" and "And I Love Her." I do believe that both of these are featured in the film, nuggets in between the great Beatles songs that they do themselves on this wonderful soundtrack.

The sleeve is pretty wonderful also, featuring the Fab Four, in snapshots, on the back of the sleeve.

This is the least rare of the two such singles, and "Ringo's Theme (This Boy)" actually made #53, and even the B side, "And I Love Her," bubbled under the Hot 100 at #105.

Such was Beatlemania at the time, where any song even remotely related to the Liverpudlian lads could become a hit.

Anyway, we saw the record at the store, and I mentioned to her that if I had the money, I would buy it, and then I moved on to other, less costly stuff.

Well, as they say, she done did it, because she bought it for me!

I was greatly surprised, and very happy at this, because quite frankly, I don't think I had seen this record in about 50 years, and probably wouldn't see it again in my lifetime.

Sometimes, when you see something, you have to grab it, and that, basically, is what she did.

But more importantly, for our nearly 21 years of marriage, my wife has shown me nothing but love.

I really lucked out with this girl; she is everything I ever wanted for a companion, for a wife, for the mother for my son, and for the woman that sleeps next to me each and every night.

All told, this was really just a small token of the love we have for each other, but boy, what a token.

Even these few days later, I am still marveling at this gift.

Thanks, Elena, I really appreciate it.

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