Chitchat and Tidbits

We are sitting around the lunch table at work sharing our weekend plans with one another.  I always find that practice somewhat amusing because my weekend plans are not very exciting.  Somehow buying groceries, getting gas in the car, going to church, doing laundry, and cleaning the house just don't have much cachet or exoticism.  But in the interest of building relationships through chitchat, I participate in the exercise because inevitably I learn something about my colleagues whom I truly enjoy.

Plus I don't mind turning my weekend into a story and fortunately my colleagues are really good sports about listening to my stories.  This particular weekend I am doing something that I am looking forward that is beyond the realm of the usual and is part of the ongoing celebration for a recent birthday.  What a great combination, plus it includes good friends and great food.  What could possibly be wrong with that?

The chitchat bounces around the table with everyone was sharing tidbits of their lives.  That's how we get to know one another, through the sharing of time and tidbits.  Sometimes I forget that and figure I have someone all figured out then it happens, another little tidbit slips into the chitchat and I am amazed  again.  It is my turn to ante up my weekend plans and I hesitate a moment as I wonder whether the youngsters around me will have ever heard of the singer, song-writing legend I am going to listen to on Saturday night.  Then I screw up my courage because the youngsters are largely the same age as my own grown children who were steeped in the cowboy songs of old Ian.  Surely every Alberta resident has some exposure to The Cowboy and the Coyote but apparently I am wrong.

Alas, their immediate unfiltered responses range from "My grandmother listens to him" to "Who's that?"  All of the varied reactions are carried through the air on gales of laughter to my poor old brain which is in high gear thinking well that's okay, I'm a nanna.  Then my brain flips to "ouch they are laughing at me."  The iphones come out and searches are conducted even as I continue to eat my soup and allow my brain to sort through the ensuing craziness of teasing and questions.  It isn't unkind, it is inquiring.  And it all made me wonder how it is possible that Alberta's number one cowboy, song-writer, story teller, and rancher was unknown to my colleagues.

How can you grow up in Alberta and not have heard Springtime and felt kinship with someone who could describe our landscape and weather with such razor precision?  That got me reminiscing to when our kids were young and we listened to Ian Tyson a lot.  So I did the old Google search and figured I'd use this blog to share a few of our favorites and do my part today to spread the wonder of Ian's craftsmanship.  When our daughter was little, I couldn't hear  Adelita Rose with out thinking of her, it was such a picturesque description of a parent's love and experience with their little girl.  I have one thing on my bucket list that requires Greg learning to two-step because "we haven't gone dancing in such a long time now" and old Ian as we call him in our house paints a word picture to music of my Own Heart's Delight that has spoken to my dancing feet for thirty years.

Sometime I might tell you the story of trying to get Greg to learn to ballroom dance.  But for now,  he is my own heart's delight and I'm glad that I have the privilege of celebrating another year and getting to know my colleagues through the ping-pong of chitchat over the tidbits of our lives.  Tonight for a couple of hours I will be transported through the magic of Ian's music as an eighty year old icon continues to ply his art.


  1. Thanks! Having a wonderful time playing the numbers in your piece and goofing off the Tube. Four Strong Winds I first heard 50 years or so ago and it's still my #1. Best! Pat


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