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Crystal Ann Lea, Meg MacDonald, Rene Magallon 
Elle King
"The Let Go"
Matt Berninger
"One More Second"
Bruce Spingsteen
"Letter To You"
Rhett Repko
"Can Someone Help Me Now?"
"Let Down"
Bruce Sudano
"Keep Doin' What You're Doin'"
This column was written the day before the news of Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death.  For so many of us, it’s one more devastating blow 2020 has dealt us.  I will take faith and hope that her new vantage point allows her to help heal what the surly bonds of earth wouldn’t.  We still need you, Justice.
This year has been an unprecedented time of change; change no one asked for, wanted or is enjoying.
Out west, the fires rage and it’s been reported they’re making the air quality equivalent to smoking 20 packs of cigarettes. Out east, Hurricane Sally has ravaged the Gulf coast. Peaceful protests for Black Lives Matter have been used by vigilantes as an excuse to come out of the woodwork like ticks, strapped with automatic rifles yelling about the Second Amendment. 
Sidenote: Ask them about any other amendment, literally ANY other amendment and the responses have ranged from, “We’re not in a geography class man, I’m protecting American citizens!” to “Um, Honor thy Father and Mother?” 
Covid continues to run rampant throughout the world as parents are ready to just let their kids be stupid, with so many restaurants still closed people have taken burning their own dinners to an art form and the political campaigning going on makes a Jr. High School cafeteria look like the Algonquin Roundtable.
Also……Tom Brady is now a Buccaneer.
All of this change for me comes on top of a new city, a new home, a new love and, for this summer at least, a new country.  But, the biggest adjustment personally (national catastrophes and money that looks like it was designed by Keebler elves aside) has been getting used to teeny tiny dogs.
My Emmett was 75 pounds of glorious lab snuggle.  We could spoon (don’t judge, when you get divorced any hug will do and he was great at it).  He never understood he wasn’t a lap dog, so when he sat on me, I could barely breathe but never pushed him off.  When I was sad, I’d say “Emmett can I have a hug?” He’d sit up on his hind legs, plop his gigantic paws onto my shoulders with a thud and nuzzle.
Getting used to two Dachshunds who together weigh less than Emmett’s head, has been interesting. They’re little, so they’re cold all the time and, like ninjas, they silently burrow under blankets mixed in with pre-existing lumps.  Checking before sitting is a lesson you only need to learn once.
After that, I learned to walk lightly and carry a big stick (to poke blankets before sitting down) as well as a few other nuggets about the breed:
  • Dachshunds cannot be spooned.  They’ll disappear into even the thinnest of arms, struggle to breathe and wiggle like a hooked fish in a net.
  • They eat like starved prisoners.  If you get in the way by being nice and trying to add a little water or a piece of carrot, they will see the treat and your hand as the same thing and their razor-sharp teeny tiny teeth will open a vein.  They’re basically Gremlins with long noses.
  • They are not shy about letting you know when they’re displeased. They’ll poop in the hallway, give it a lick, then kiss you.
  • Dachshunds can’t be trained to do tricks.  None.  No sitting, no fetching. Nothing. They’re the Little Lord Fauntleroy of dogs.  They train their owners to give them treats and to pick them up when they’ve decided walking is beneath them by staring up and barking.  But it’s not a real bark.  It’s the same kind of high pitched yap I let out after biting down on tinfoil stuck to a piece of gum.
  • They’re dogs bred to hunt badgers, which means they stick their long snouts into places they don’t belong.  One of our Dachshunds didn’t pay attention in badger-hunting class because he hunts, kills and eats frogs. Then licks us.
  • You constantly need to return their ears to the factory position.  They’re long and flip over.
On the upside, they don’t need walks.  A king sized bed is a football field to them.
It’s taken a little while to adjust to small pups. I’m not used to not being able to full-body hug my pet, but I do love these wiener dogs.  Every once in a while we will take them on walks. The 12-year-old in me especially loves that they’re called wiener dogs.  I laugh like an immature Beavis every time someone says with complete sincerity, “Hey, nice wiener! I have a couple myself!” 
Thirteen-year-old Rudy sits with pride in the stroller we have for him looking as regal as possible (not easy when you’re wrapped in a Snoopy blanket and an ugly Christmas sweater her mom thinks is adorable and I think feels itchy) and 8-year-old Charlee stops every 10 feet to lie on her back, throw her paws in the air as if to say, “This belly isn’t going to rub itself.”
They both know how to walk on a leash, they just choose not to. 
In spite of all of that, I love them both and continue to make the adjustment from large dog to the breed that would’ve been in Gulliver’s Travels if the Lilliputians had pets.  I’ve learned to ignore their ears always being inside out and remembering how to pet them is a work in progress.  My better half has started looking at me like I’m Lenny.
“Dogs teach us a very important lesson in life: the mailman is not to be trusted.” —Sian Ford

“Fight for the things you that you care about. But do it in a way that will lead others to join you.”  

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg (1933 – 2020)

Bruce Springsteen

"The E Street Band is his conduit toward transcendence, community, and emotional uplift. All of these things are in short supply in the present moment...the verses gesture toward the doubt, fear, and hard lessons that went into his best writing, but the chorus leans on the “you” of the title as his present-day revelation." – Pitchfork

Matt Berninger

"The song starts out as a minimal and meditative acoustic tune, but soon expands with shuffling drums, rich organ, blooming backing vocals and even a tasteful — and slightly off-kilter — piano solo. 'Give me one more second to dry my eyes,' Berninger sings, 'Give me one more day to realize/Smoke’s in our eyes or in the distance/Either way, we’re gonna miss it.’" – Rolling Stone



"These lyrics feel like quintessential angsty rock rap versions of self-care. While not all of Jay-Way’s music has this type of genre fusion this tone seems to embody everything he is." – Central Sauce

“No, I'm Not Okay (NINO), will give you optimism and assurance in a time of turmoil. You may not be okay at the moment, but Jay-Way reminds us that we will soon be.” –  Earmilk

Declan McKenna

“McKenna...has never sounded better.” – Billboard

“McKenna has made quite a name for himself” – Consequence of Sound

“McKenna’s the real deal of unfiltered, organic pop songcraft arranged with the fundamentals—and little else, because it’s all he needs.”
AV Club

Phoenix “Identical” From The Original Motion Picture "On The Rocks"

Saint Nomad Get To Know - Short Video Intro

Mt. Joy "My Vibe" CBS This Morning

Foxes "Friends In The Corner" Official Video

Wyn Starks "Circles" Official Performance

Elle King “The Let Go” Official Video
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