Monday, March 25, 2013

If I Only Had a Name

If I only had a name... this blog would be more interesting. If my name were Brad Pitt or Justin Bieber, then whatever mundane topic I decided to write about would suddenly be all the more interesting, wouldn't it? I've certainly fallen into that trap - it's easy. I adore Pete Townshend from The Who and if he said "I really enjoy listening to Justin Bieber" then I would run out and get everything I could. Why? Because Pete speaks to me in a way that few people have - and I would certainly be interested in who speaks to him.

This topic came into my head earlier as I was listening to Songza while doing guitar repairs (a side business for me). I chose "bedtime - acoustic relaxation" as my concierge choice and let the Calgon-like tones take me away. It is 11:00 pm, you know, so I have to go to sleep sometime. In the midst of acoustic music I've never heard before (and one song from the under-appreciated John Denver) came the familiar intro to "Landslide" by Stevie Nicks / Fleetwood Mac. I instantly became excited, thinking I was going to hear a live version or some rare demo track of the song. But no - it was Landslide, alright, but it sure wasn't Stevie Nicks singing it. In fact, I couldn't bear to turn away from the repair bench to see the performer's name.

See, Stevie Nicks is another special musician to me. I love her voice. I love the songs she writes. She's permanently engrained in my life: when my daughter was born, we were struggling to pick out a middle name for her. We knew her first name was going to be Bindi, (yes, after Steve Irwin's daughter) and we had basically settled on Zuzu as her middle name. Zuzu is the name of the smallest daughter of Jimmy Stewart's character George Bailey in "It's A Wonderful Life," which is my all-time favorite film. (coincidentally, Stewart is my all-time favorite actor) I always loved that little girl in the film, and my need to be slightly different demanded that I name my daughter something that was fairly certain not to be common among her peers. Of course, our families argued that "Bindi" was unique enough, and we didn't need to saddle our daughter with two "weird" names.

Which brings me to Stevie Nicks. On the way to the hospital, or on one of my trips back home to feed the dog, I heard "Rhiannon" on the radio. So we compromised and named her Bindi Rhiannon. We have, at times, had to correct people that the name is not "Rhianna" which is becoming more and more common, and I always bring up Stevie Nicks and Fleetwood Mac as proof of the name's origins.

Where is this story going? Well, here's the point: I only hope that someday I can be the influence over my child instead of whatever pop star or actress is all the rage at the time. I know that's probably wishful thinking, but my own parents were very influential on me, and I hope I can hold that same influence with Bindi - and that I use it for good.

That's why we don't listen to Justin Bieber around the house.

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