Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Tears Are Falling - Or Not

This post has come about in a very odd way today. Thinking back to a couple of minor events in my life, I was simply reminded that how we treat others can truly affect their lives. My examples here may sound cheesy, or lacking in substance, but I think the point will come across.

It started this evening when I was listening to the Forgotten 45 at 5 on my favorite radio station, Cool 105.7 here in Waterloo. DJ Don Betts played a tune from 1985 by Kiss called Tears Are Falling. I hadn't heard that song in years! (Hence the 'forgotten' 45). By the way, if you have to ask what a 45 is, you're way too young. I'll just tell you that it won't fit into your mp3 player. Anyway I decided to check out the video on youtube, and that's when the memories started coming back.

If I can remember right, I've been to four Kiss concerts. When I was about 16 or 17, I was at one particular Kiss concert in which Bruce Kulick was the guitar player. He's also the guitar player in this particular video. I don't know what was up with me that night, but I must've appeared pretty sad. I mean, my countenance must've shown that I was not happy. Being at that awkward teenage age, it could've been due to any of a number of things.

I was pretty close to the stage, and I remember looking around, and then as I looked up to the stage I saw Bruce staring right at me. It was as if he was intentionally waiting for me to look at him. As soon as we made eye contact, he smiled at me. For a teenager, that's pretty cool for a rock star to take notice of you! But for whatever reason, I didn't smile at him. So he kept looking at me... and he put his forefinger and his thumb on the sides of his mouth and made a sad face, as if to ask, "Why are you so sad?" Then, with his finger and thumb still in place, he turned it into a smile, and then took his hand away and opened up into a huge smile. That did the trick for me, and whatever had been making me sad was now history, and I was happy for the rest of the evening! I'm sure Bruce remembers that night just as much as I do! LOL

The other minor event in my life that I remembered tonight was not such a nice memory. But it really was minor. :) This happened before a Slaughter concert (the rock band is named "Slaughter"). To the right of the stage, an area was fenced off and the fans were able to get autographs from the band over the fence. I took off my neon green baseball cap (this was the 80's!) and I handed it to lead singer Mark Slaughter for him to sign it. He signed it, and then, looking straight at me, he intentionally handed it off to my left to someone else (another fan), around the corner of the fence, and I never saw the hat again! My happy mood, when I got to interact with a rock star, was changed in an instant as I suddenly turned sad, mad, confused and disillusioned all at once! I'm sure Mark remembers that night just as much as I do! (But don't worry, I've since forgiven him...) Hehe...

Anyway... all that to say that even the "little" things - the ways in which we treat others - can make a difference in their lives, in a good way or in a bad way. Don't underestimate the power of a smile, a kind word, a kind deed, an unexpected act of grace... or the power of a word of condemnation, an act of unkindness, a scornful look.

Thank God that He has given us Himself as an example of love and grace, and also Himself as our life from which our acts of love and grace come!

The videos here aren't related in any way to the post. Just indulge me. :) The songs are a reminder of my youth, and you can see Bruce Kulick in the first one (guitar player in the red shirt) and Mark Slaughter in the second one (singer).

Kiss - Tears Are Falling
By the way, Don Betts picked this one to play on this day (January 20) because it's Paul Stanley's (lead singer) 57th birthday. Paul has had 3 hip replacement surgeries, and I wonder if it's partially a result of jumps like the one at 3:23 in the video. ;)

Slaughter - Fly To the Angels


  1. Wow. Joel, I think those are two awesome examples of "minor" events in your life. It is amazing how much the small stuff really does matter sometimes.

    BTW, didn't know you were into "death" metal. ;-)

    My wife saw Kiss in 1975 and didn't even care! She only went because she was dating a boy who's mother worked at the Omni. She also saw Aerosmith, Styx, Ted Nugent - i.e. people I would have killed to see and she was totally indifferent!

  2. I had a wave of fear went through my nervous system when you said 'Slaughter concert'...

    But I am glad you explained it: (the rock band is named "Slaughter") Aaah! :)

    Don't underestimate the power of a smile, a kind word, a kind deed, an unexpected act of grace... or the power of a word of condemnation, an act of unkindness, a scornful look.

    You are right, Joel! I am learning this to be true more and more everyday in my life...

  3. John,

    Yeah, you know me... I'm into all kinds of music! I would've killed to see Pat Boone back in the day... LOL.

    The heavy metal bands were the ones I went to see the most in my teen years. At one time I had saved all my concert tickets, and I had over 30. All of the concerts had 2 or 3 bands, so I got to see a lot of cool concerts. Motley Crue, Dokken, Firehouse, Bullet Boys, Skid Row, Judas Priest, Extreme, ZZ Top, Guns N Roses, Aerosmith.

    You mentioned Styx and Ted Nugent. I never did see Styx, though I would've loved to. They were here a year or two ago, and I was sad to have missed them again. Nugent is the one concert that I saw that I didn't appreciate enough at the time. He opened for one of the Kiss concerts and I really only knew a couple of his tunes at the time, and just wasn't into it. He's really quite an intelligent guy.


    Yeah, I think my parents weren't to happy about me seeing a Slaughter concert either. :) And not just because of the name... LOL.

    And yep... the seemingly small things in life... I'm also learning more and more that these things can mean so much.