Seen and Not Heard

DAY 29 -- When I was a kid, I mowed lawns for a handful of people in my town -- mostly older folks with names like Mabel (and her husband Porter), Juanita, and Henrietta that clearly positioned them in a much different generation than my own.

My musical tastes at this time were starting to evolve as I moved from stuff like DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince to A Tribe Called Quest. Always eclectic in my musical tastes, my listening habits were peppered with some of the popular Christian artists of the time, as well. For example, I mentioned One Bad Pig last summer when I had the chance to meet them at the nearby Audiofeed festival.

During the summer between my 8th grade and freshman years, I was introduced to one of the more popular Christian bands of the time -- Petra -- through their album Beyond Belief.


One day in that summer of 1990, I bought the Beyond Belief cassette and took it with me to a mowing job. Having only heard the album once before, I couldn't wait to pop it in my Walkman and blast it into my ear holes while I mowed Porter and Mabel's yard.

And that's exactly what I did. Cruising around on their riding mower, I could hardly contain myself during tracks like Seen and Not Heard (a slight parody of Kiss' Heaven's On Fire) as I busted out a full on air drum routine.

I was mowing. I was rocking. I was bad ass.

Apparently I wasn't taking into account the fact that Porter was watching me rock out from the back window of his house. He commented on this as I finished up his yard -- "You sure looked like you were having a good time out there." I'll forever think of this when I hear that song.

. . .

This afternoon I mowed our yard. I filled the mower with gas, popped in my earbuds, and opened the music app on my phone. Unsure what to listen to, I thought I'd take a chance and just give the long list of artists a flip of the thumb and listen to whatever came up.

Petra.

Beyond Belief.

Twenty-seven summers later. You'd better believe it.

I was mowing. I was rocking. I was bad ass.

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