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I Love The Boss

Monday, February 2, 2009

I've never been a huge Bruce Springsteen fan. Like many who came of age in the late 70's, I was overexposed to Born to Run and Clarence Clemons' nattering saxophone solos. But I always liked the line, "Wrap your legs 'round these velvet ribs/And strap your hands 'cross my engines." There was something good in those words, something more than Jersey strut. I found myself alone a lot in the mid 80's, and wound up buying Nebraska, an album whose spare, bleak imagery suited me just then. That was the only Springsteen I ever sought out. The rest just oozed in over the airwaves.

Superbowl Sunday found me in and out of the kitchen, with a bunch of friends on our couch. I was in it for the chili, the laughter; for the hoot and holler of men watching the game. The screen got my attention only at the halftime show. And there he was in all his Bruceness, stomping up and down the catwalk, all in black, like a late-period Johnny Cash or Elvis. Black is slimming, but he looked bigger than I remembered, as if, to quote a line from Gross Point Blank, he had swelled. Maybe a little stiff, too, as if his back were acting up. Well, heck, he's been at it for thirty years. I'm wearing more black these days, too, and if I drop something on the floor, I have to work out a little plan for how I'm going to get down to pick it up, figure out what I'm going to grab to get back up.

And then he did it, made a little run, dropped to his knees and started a power slide down the slick catwalk. And, this being the Superbowl, there was a camera positioned at the foot of the runway, trained on Bruce's rapidly approaching pelvis. The slide ended with a clunk as The Boss' goods connected with the lens; he'd attained quite a bit more momentum in nearly four decades of power sliding than perhaps anyone had counted on. After a brief moment of clobbered confusion, the camera pulled back to see Bruce, his arms windmilling as he worked to get up from his Z-bent position. His face split in a goofy, I-can't-believe-I'm-doing-this grin as he struggled back to his feet. And at that moment, now and forever, he won me over. I gotta say, I love The Boss.


Ditto the music, ditto the swelling, ditto the stiffness. I cheered when he did the slide and then said "that damn camera better not pan away I have got to see how he get's himself up from this". Not bad Mr. Boss though I could definitely hear the teeth gritting in the rise to vertical.

And I can use the word damn because today was National Take Your Cussing to the Office Day and I am still in the office.

Many more times these days than I care to admit--I been there.
All except for the slide, of course. Won't catch me doing then. But then, I also don't have "the goods" that I have to worry about.

Swelling or no, I thought he looked purty damn good.

I said damn because Tim said it.

I can tell you that power slides HURT. There's no padding on the shins and knees and they take the brunt of it. I have done one in performance--New Year's Eve 2008--and feel no desire to do another. Caught up in the moment, thank goodness there's no video. He's on YouTube, by the way. Search for Springsteen Power Slide.
I want to thank everyone for taking their cussing to the comments section. It's a Facebook thing, don't anybody worry about it.

I thought Cussing Day was Friday the 6th. Doesn't matter - every day is Cussing Day at my office...

Never liked The Boss. I say that knowing I always sing along on the radio with him anyway. Credit is due for a stunt he pulled off very well.

I couldn't help but think he was looking overweight and attributed his stiffness mostly to too-tight jeans and carrying those extra pounds. Maybe he should hire Madonna's trainer.

I wouldn't call myself a Springsteen fan, but I regard "Born to Run" as one of the greatest rock albums of all time. I bought the 30-year (gulp!) edition a few of years ago and wallowed in the nostalgia. I even learned the words to "Jungleland" so I could sing along: "Outside the street's on fire in a real death waltz between what's flesh and what's fantasy."

Oh, and my favorite Christmas song is Springsteen's version of "Santa Claus is Coming to Town."

I've never been a huge fan, but I thought the halftime show was great. I've been playing Springsteen on the iPod all day.

Of course, it was a good game, too.

The commercials, however, seemed lacking this year.

*Jersey strut*?



I'm so glad you posted this! I tuned in for the last couple of minutes, and had completely missed the power slide. But what I did see turned me into a fan. He throws a swell party.

If you lived in Philly in the 70s, you couldn't escape Broooooce. A local deejay, Ed Sciaky, played and talked about Springsteen (and Billy Joel) constantly. His music sounded fun, but I couldn't stand his looks at the time -- like a low rent corner-hanger with a roach clip-branded lower lip. But, as it turns out, he cleaned up real good.

I don't think he looks hefty, just in shape. One thing I have noticed since the advent of wide-screen tvs is that the lean can look mighty wide if the aspect ratio isn't adjusted; the picture will stretch out to fill the frame, making the Desperate Housewives appear contentedly well-fed.

Love my word verification: menshies
Maybe it's Yiddish for cross-dressing do-gooders.

I never liked Springsteen and like him even less after his exclusive deal with Wal-Mart.

He does have one wonderful thing going for him...Steve Van Zandt. I love watching that guy and thinking of his Sylvio role on "The Sopranos." That's why I watched the half-time show.

Nebraska was my first Springsteen album (actually cassette)too. When I moved up to Burlington VT in 1984 for grad school in a VW Rabbit full of my worldly goods, and a big gray cat under the seat, he yowled throughout the entire tape. I kinda agreed with him.

But then last year, when the Boss came to town for the Magic Tour, I finally went to see him. My SO had told me that the E Street Band is hands down the best live rock band performing now and forever; they don't play a wrong note. I decided that going to this concert was one of those things you just gotta do while you are alive - just because.
I HAD to see Springsteen live once in my life (at least). So we went, and I will tell you that it was one of the best concerts I have ever seen - maybe the best. Yes, he is pushing 60, dresses in black, and is slower, thicker, and stiffer than he was. But he sand his heart out and yes, I was - and am - from that night a huge fan.

I also LOVE the Seeger sessions and what he doing now with his huge fame and influence.

Just so you know - this is long way of saying I get your post.
Me too.

Little Steven's Underground Garage is the BEST radio music show. Check it out, if you haven't yet.

I'm a huge fan AND I thought he was damn good - and I''m not even at the office.


PS: It's "velvet rims" ...

Umm... remember what I said about The Boss being in shape. After seeing a side shot from half-time on Letterman tonight, I'm thinking -- not so much. No wonder he had a little trouble hauling it back up. But so do I.

Heck, for a man of almost 60, he was moving like nobody's business and looked HOT!! I loved seeing him too. It was so refreshing to see an icon there and not some teenybopper band who has not earned the right.

I enjoyed half-time with The Boss way more than the football game. Lots of great close-ups (ditto what Jayne said!) and I could tell he was having a darn good time too.
A couple of times I even conjured up some images of BT3 and the Swinging Orangutangs singing "Born to Run".....a strange fantasy or does the band actually perform some Springsteen numbers?

Julie, the diversity of your blog never ceases to amaze!

While I have little interest in football, watched the 1/2 time show for the entertainment it always provides. I've heard that reading Springsteen linear notes reveals the folk music aspect of his rock songs.

Jayne, I agree. However, an icon is as an icon does. Hope you missed the Rolling Stones' halftime show a couple of years ago. I love them, but gaah, it was nothing more than noise.

Ruthie, so far no Bruce in the Orangs' lineup, although stranger things have happened.

Carol, I stand corrected. Rims it is. Rats. I liked ribs.

Catbird, I am off to adjust the aspect ratio on my full-length mirror.

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