Tuesday, October 03, 2006


Erick and I sat on the porch of Seama's apartment. Kids slouched in tired chairs around us, a crowd gyrated and jumped to Outkast just inside the door. Downstairs, bottles were breaking, laughter, yelling. We sat, eyes bright, leaning forward, discussing his radio show in Tuscaloosa, soul music, projects, collectors. Fifteen minutes before, I had felt a bit lost walking through the hazy, loud apartment, bumping into people, Adeeba pulling me out to the center of the room to dance. I had already had my night out with Jess and Hollis and Rebecca. I was a bit tired. I was there...why was I there? To see Seama and Adeeba and Charles. To hug them. Charles sat beside me, Adeeba and Seama were shimmying and twirling a few feet away. Erick told me of his baby sister and her unusual interest in music, that at 11 she was already telling him what she really did and didn't like in different songs, her preferences in soul and classic rock.

"You'd expect her to like something like..." He scratched his chin and looked around.

"Britney Spears?" I finished his thought.

"I got her a Beatles t-shirt..I'm making her a compilation of their songs."

I smiled. I thought of that musty coat closet by the front door in my childhood home. Down under the hem of a London Fog duster, through the scent of mothballs and leather and dust, I spent many a morning, digging and shifting and pulling out a wonderland of sound. Stacks and stacks of records. I can't imagine who I'd be today with out that, without my father's record collection. I wondered as Erick talked glowingly, proudly of his little sister if she would feel the same way about his gift of music in a few years time.

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