Car Rides with Zappa
My dog loved to go for car rides with me. I would choose the music for the trip; his role was to sit on the back seat, surveying the changing landscape. The only music he couldn’t abide was Tom Waits. Something about his voice would make Zappa’s ears go flat. When the weather got slightly warmer, I would roll down the car window and he would stick his head out, ears flapping in the wind.
Sunday mornings we visited with my 91-year old father. “Okay Zappa”, I would say. “Let’s go visit Grandpa.” Two blocks away from the house, Zappa would start barking in anticipation. He loved those visits.
Zappa died on April 6, 2010. This morning as I drove to my father’s, I caught myself looking in the rearview mirror. The back seat was empty. I realized I could play Tom Waits if I wanted to. But I just didn’t feel like it.