Thursday, August 27, 2015

Tramps Like Us

It was 40 years ago this week that the greatest album in the history of music was released.

TigerBlog speaks of course of "Born To Run," the third album for Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, after "Greetings From Asbury Park" and "The Wild, The Innocent and the E Street Shuffle."

Of TigerBlog's 10 favorite songs of all-time, four can be found on the album "Born to Run." Those four would be: "Thunder Road," "Backstreets," "Jungleland" and the title track, "Born to Run."

Music today, in a word, sucks. That's a little harsh. It's more like three words - pretty much sucks.

 At least TigerBlog Jr. likes the indie rock-type stuff, like Imagine Dragons and Of Monsters and Men, which is actually pretty good stuff.

TigerBlog cringes every time Miss TigerBlog turns on her music, which is almost all awful.

According to the Billboard Top 100, the top three songs in the country right now are:
1. "Cheerleader"
2. "Can't Feel My Face"
3. "Watch Me"

Sadly, because of Miss TigerBlog, TB has heard all of them more than he would have liked, which means more than once each.

Here are some lyrics from these songs:

Do the stanky leg (stank)
Do the stanky leg (stank stank)
Do the stanky leg (stank)
Do the stanky leg (stank stank)


I can't feel my face when I'm with you
But I love it, but I love it, oh

and the even more cringe-worthy:

I think that I've found myself a cheerleader
She is always right there when I need her

Then there's this:

Remember all the movies, Terry
We'd go see
Trying to learn to walk like the heroes
We thought we had to be
Well after all this time
To find we're just like all the rest
Stranded in the park
And forced to confess
To hiding on the backstreets


Outside the street's on fire
In a real death waltz
Between what's flesh and what's fantasy
And the poets down here
Don't write nothing at all
They just stand back and let it all be
And in the quick of the night
They reach for their moment
And try to make an honest stand
But they wind up wounded
Not even dead
Tonight in Jungleland


The screen door slams
Mary's dress waves
Like a vision she dances across the porch
As the radio plays
Roy Orbison singing for the lonely
Hey that's me and I want you only
Don't turn me home again
I just can't face myself alone again

and of course:

The highway's jammed with broken heroes on a last chance power drive
Everybody's out on the run tonight
but there's no place left to hide
Together Wendy we can live with the sadness
I'll love you with all the madness in my soul
Oh-oh, someday girl I don't know when
we're gonna get to that place
Where we really wanna go
and we'll walk in the sun
But till then tramps like us
baby we were born to run

Ah, TigerBlog weeps for the youth today, the ones who didn't grow up in the 1970s, who didn't go to the record store and buy these things called "albums," especially the one called "Born To Run." TigerBlog grew up not far from where Springsteen and Steven Van Zandt did, and he took his SATs at the high school Springsteen attended.

It was impossible to grow up in TB's town without being a Springsteen fan back then, but really, it didn't really matter where you lived back then. There was nobody like Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, especially, especially in concert.

The  "Born To Run" album was released on Aug. 25, 1975, so technically that would be 40 years and two days ago. It's the best album that's every been, and it's the best album that ever will be. With the stuff coming out today, the Boss has very little to worry about.

The balcony yesterday afternoon was filled with young men, large young men for the most part, who fumbled to put on shirts and ties and jackets and get their pictures taken. They were Princeton football freshmen, along with a handful of older players who wanted to get a new picture taken.

They were all born 20 years after "Born to Run" came out and, as they are the same age as TigerBlog Jr., they have lived lives deprived of quality musical selections.

They can't worry about that now. Not with today the first day of Princeton football practice.

Princeton, as it does every year, starts football practice late. Basically every other football-playing entity has already started, from Pop Warner through high school to the pros.

Now that it's here, it's a big grind.

It's three weeks of preseason, followed by 10 straight Saturdays of games.

TigerBlog has written almost since the beginning of TigerBlog that he would make some changes. At first, he was okay with the longtime Ivy rule of not going to the NCAA football playoffs, but he's changed his mind on that one.

Before he would do that, though, he'd start the preseason a week earlier (yes, there are costs involved) and then have each team in the league be off after Week 5.

This makes sense on every level, except the cost. First, the season would start a week earlier, so it wouldn't seem as late as it is. Second, that week is the perfect time for a break. Each team will have played two league games and all three of its non-league games and will have five league games left.

Then there's the idea that the 10 games, 10 weeks haul is rough on the body and mind. A week off in the middle is the perfect rest for both.

TigerBlog was in the weight room yesterday with assistant coach Andrew Aurich. Shortly after that would be the first team meeting - after the head shots.

TigerBlog is fascinated each November by the last practice of the year. It seems like the time just flies by, and it many ways it does.

But it is a 13-week - that's one quarter of the year - process, with a lot of practice and repetition for only 10 games. By the time the last practice rolls around, it's cold, it's dark, it's nearly Thanksgiving.

Yesterday in the weight room, TB was thinking about the first practice, to be held on a 90-degree summer day, before Labor Day. What do they think before it starts? What do they think in November, at the end?

Anyway, it's starting today. Opening day is Sept. 19 at Lafayette. The home opener is Sept. 26 against Lehigh. The Ivy opener is against the Al Bagnoli-led Columbia Lions a week later.

Tramps like us? Baby we were born to run.

And, hopefully, to stop the run. And born to throw. That too. With multiple quarterbacks.

Princeton football 2015. It's starting today.

1 comment:

D '82 said...

TB, two points: (1) You are correct that "Born To Run" is the best album ever.

(2) You long ago became more of a Princetonian than many of us who actually hold degrees. Unfortunately, you probably missed out on one fringe benefit of attending. In the winter of 1979, Springsteen brought the house down with a concert in your current office building. Legend has it that jumping Tiger undergraduates caused damage to the Jadwin floor. After the show, I strolled onto the stage to pick up a harmonica and guitar pick that The Boss had left behind. That's right, today I have in my possession a memento harmonica with actual Springsteen dried spit.