The Thrill

By ManWithHat

Picture me, if you are able, at about six or seven years old.

Picture my family, if you are able, driving around in our Plymouth Voyager, with my father selecting the radio station: Garth Brooks or oldies. No disrespect.

Picture my sisters, if you can imagine, plowing through albums by Salt N Peppa, Boyz 2 Men, En Vogue.

And then picture me, again, at five years old, alone in the house. I sit before my parents' turntable, and leaf through the vinyl selection, past the Tickle Toon Typhoon, past the Tim Noah, past John Denver's glowing face, and watch, watch as my hands find that silver lining, that black cover, that black man, that white suit, that orange tiger, that Thrill. How many of those things are left?

I slip it from the cover, I slip it on the machine, I carefully place the needle down like so few of my fellows know how to do.

Feel with me as the bass drum meets the kick in my heart, and the bassline drums my brains down my spine, and the rhythm makes me rock like an awkward suburban white Jew on the West Coast and that's what I am, rocking to the songs of a man now buried beneath madness and dirt. The most recognizable bassline in the world. I slide on the brown shag carpet in my socks and in my jeans, not knowing what dancing is but feeling its undead ocean in my heart.

Play through. Long play, play through. Past a living Beatle, past a dead Vincent, feeling the rhythm the rhyme the relocation of my spine as I'm shuffling and sliding and jumping and bouncing and being as white as I am able. But I'm the only one.

Now watch as I sense someone coming. Interference with no clearance, so I drop to the couch and pretend I am the white that is expected, calmly listening to an album that should be rocked and rolled within a reeling soul.

I'm just that smooth.

No way could I let them know. Dancing wildly without expectations or steps or positions? That's not what I'm taught. I'm not taught to wildly feel in my body, but to tightly and closely feel in my heart. Keep it hidden. Keep it secret, keep it safe.

But there's that longing. That longing. That longing to let loose and lose control.

Heart on my sleeve, heart in my knees, heart on the floor, rolling.

And that's the Thrill for me. LP.

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The Thrill

Created: Jan 19, 2010

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