I didn't grow up in Kansas, but living there from 2000-2003 was a very special part of my life. I met my wife there (Olathe), turned 21 (Stanley), graduated college (Lawrence), visited a honky-tonk the size of a K-Mart (Topeka) and won my first professional awards (Eudora).
I've been thinking that there isn't a better month to be in Kansas, or the Kansas City metropolitan area, for that matter.
Garth Brooks is doing some concerts at the brand new Sprint Center arena, his first live shows in close to a decade, I think. Instead, I'll probably have to settle for watching one of them in a California movie theater.
The University of Kansas football team is undefeated and ranked No. 5 in the nation (No. 4 in the Bowl Championship Series). Can we get Granger Smith to write a song about the 9-0 Jayhawks. The last time they were 9-0 was 1909, the same year my great-grandfather had his Bar Mitzvah.
Will Kansas compete for the national championship? No. My dad's alma mater, Boston College, was No. 2 in the BCS rankings, and I asked him after their loss to Florida State on Saturday, did you think they'd actually win the national title, and he said 'no, but the fact that they get ranked that high gets you thinking that they might'.
Even though I know they won't win it all, I wish I could be in Arrowhead Stadium on Nov. 24 to watch Kansas and Missouri play. I'll have to settle for watching it on TV.
Even if I did, it still wouldn't top the show I saw there in spring 2001 - George Strait, Alan Jackson, Lonestar, Sara Evans, Lee Ann Womack and Asleep at the Wheel.
Coming back from a good/great concert is always a great feeling. You just feel like you're on Cloud 9, listening to great music and driving home, thinking about how great the show was. It doesn't hit you until the next morning that you have to go to work or do chores/errands, etc. That's how I felt last month after I saw Eric Church outside Sacramento.
I wish Craig Morgan would come back to California for a concert. I love his new song "International Harvester", and the video reminds me of driving on the gravel roads on the outskirts of Kansas City. Whenever a car or truck passes you out there, people always wave to you. I remember once sliding into a snow bank there, and right next to it was a Buffalo farm. Kind of a scary experience. Maybe I can write a song about it. Well, I doubt it would be as good as Morgan's latest hit.
Unfortunately, I fall into that category of the obnoxious people honking on their horns, not the farmer. I remember getting stuck behind farmers on tractors up in Washington state and Oregon, too.