The Sheila Divine @ Harvard Square Mayfair 5.3.2015

Sometimes you hang out in Harvard Square on a beautiful day and watch bands with your 8-year-old son. Sometimes that boy gets tired. Sometimes you strike a deal with him* to hang out for just two songs from one of your favorite bands. Sometimes, as you’re walking to the T with your little buddy after those two songs, he decides he wants to stick around a little longer and you end up getting to watch a good chunk of The Sheila Divine’s set before everyone goes home happy. Sometimes you have really good days.

* Bribe him with pizza.

OldJack @ Make Music Harvard Square 6.18.2011

June 18th, 2011 was a good day.

This particular Saturday started with a party for my Big Little One, who recently turned (I can’t believe how time flies) five years old. That afternoon, with some help from my wife, I convinced the boy to hop on the train with me to go see OldJack as part of Make Music Harvard Square…

We take the red line a few stops and arrive about 5 minutes before OldJack are scheduled to perform. Looks like things are running behind schedule. That’s not a good sign when you’re with a potentially overtired boy and dinner time is rapidly approaching. We say hi to Dan Nicklin. Big Little One seems bothered by the noise from the other bands playing. Look! A candy shop! Let’s go get a lollipop.

We walk out with a blue raspberry Dum Dum* and a fresh start. Across the street there’s a little less commotion. That’s where Big Little One gets a couple of licks in before dropping the lollipop in a puddle. Back over to Hidden Sweets we go. This time we emerge with a bubble gum flavored Dum Dum.** Big Little One tells me he’s going to wait until we get home before he eats this one.

The boy is pretty antsy by the time OldJack kicks into “Love Me Or?”. Initially he’s put off by the volume (he’s wearing earplugs and covering his ears, so there’s no real danger), but he settles in by my side as the band plays on. He’s focused. Big Little One is taking it all in. He’s sitting on my knee, now. Content.

OldJack doesn’t seem as intense in the bright of day. It’s a nice change of pace. There’s an ease about them in the afternoon sunshine. The weight they often carry into the wee hours of the morning is lifted. The band, and those watching, are left to enjoy the moment.

I feel a tugging on my leg. Big Little One wants to go. It’s only a few songs into the set, but he’s hungry. And tired. We head back toward the train.

“Dad, when we get in the car can we listen to that band on a CD? I want to hear that song.”

“Which song?” I ask.

“The first one. I want to hear that song.”

“Sure thing, buddy.”

*The lollipop cost 12 cents. The cashier at Hidden Sweets tells me that’s the minimum amount charged on by-the-pound candy. This information is going to come in handy in a bit.

**The bubble gum Dum Dum would also end up getting dropped. The boy was very tired. Thankfully, we had a spare at home.