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As I'm sitting at home, three days removed from the birth of my little girl, I'm mindful of the help and support that the Disc Golf Station wives have given us. My wife, Chelsea, Clint's wife, Kelly, and Wallace's wife, Jenny have all been instrumental in helping Disc Golf Station take care of the day to day shipping of orders, the restocking of inventory, and the much needed help while we are at tournaments.
My wife especially has taken a very large role in not only raising my son (and now daughter) but in making sure packages get shipped out on time each day. Disc Golf Station is truly a family owned and operated business. We're not a corporation and we don't have employees outside of family. DGS is run by the Stanleys and the Hendersons. I take pride in this!
I am looking forward to a time when my son (18 months old) can actually help with the store. Right now, he loves it when we get restocking orders because his favorite thing in the whole world is to spread as many discs out all over the place as soon as possible. On a recent tournament order, he removed and spread out over 20 discs in about 2 minutes. "Thanks for your help little buddy," I said. But honestly, I meant it. He was helping in the only way he knew how. He loves "fizz-bees" and that makes me excited.
Anyways, a big thank you to our supportive family here at Disc Golf Station, most of all to our wives that put up with the business and with us!
When playing solo rounds of disc golf, listening to music is a nice way to simultaneously relax and get pumped up to make that next great shot...or to refocus after that not-so-great toss. This is also an excuse to brag about my highly refined taste of music and tell you about some of my favorite rock albums of all time.
Here's my Top 5 Rock Albums for Disc Golf:
Disclaimer: This is my list. If yours is different as surely it will be, feel free to post yours in the comments.
Honorable Mention: De-loused in the Comatorium - The Mars Volta, The Black Album - Metallica, Rage Against the Machine (self-titled) - Rage Against the Machine
5. Between the Heart and the Synapse - The Receiving End of Sirens
This one of the original and best post-hardcore/experimental bands you'll ever listen to. The Receiving End of Sirens put together a masterpiece with "Between the Heart and the Synapse" featuring a favorite of mine, Casey Crescenzo on many of the lead vocals. (Casey also shows up in this countdown a little later.) There is not a weak track on this album but my favorites are "Planning a Prison Break," "The Evidence," and "This Armistice." Youtube this stuff people! Seriously, I can't say enough about the state of mind this album will put you in. Highly melodic and catchy but never trite, you'll be singing this poetry long after the music stops.
4. The Used (self-titled) - The Used
Wow! What a debut album from the pioneers and perfectors of the screamo-but-not-emo genre. "A Box Full of Sharp Objects" introduced me to the beautifully abrasive screaming and super high singing of lead singer Bert McCracken. Just TRY to sing along for one song. I bet you can't scream and sing back and forth like he does...but it's sure fun to try. This album is full of songs for all energy levels...especially HIGH energy. Every song is worth listening to, no need to skip around here. "Poetic Tragedy" is a must. Truly an incredible first effort from a band that is still around and still making good music. But this is probably every fan's favorite album.
3. Act II: The Meaning Of, And All Things Regarding Ms. Leading - The Dear Hunter
The lead singer/creator of The Dear Hunter is Casey Crescenzo, formerly of The Receiving End of Sirens. Casey needed an avenue to better express his creativity and explore a different story lyrically than would have fit with TREOS. The end result: pretty much everything I love about TREOS but with a concept series of albums. It's not possible to listen to this record and not get many different lyrics and melodies stuck in your head. For days. In a good way, not a Bruno Mars way. If you've never heard of the Dear Hunter, listen to "Red Hands," "Where the Road Parts," and "Black Sandy Beaches." If you don't like these songs, you probably don't understand great music and can go back to listening to Nickelback. (Sorry folks, just speaking my mind...remember you can always make your own list)
2. Sing the Sorrow - AFI
I first started listening to AFI during my freshman year of college at Sam Houston State. This became the anthem of that year and the years to follow. It's one of the most fun albums to sing along with at the top of your lungs. I have very fond memories of a car full of my best friends hollering it out to "Sing the Sorrow" driving down the highway. There are great "band" vocals on this record that make it very easy to participate in the music rather than just listening. Much of the lyrical content is dark, contemplative, and emo...but not lame. This album has one of the best opening tracks ever with Miseria Cantare (The Beginning). Davey Havok's hauntingly melodic vocals will keep you coming back for more. The was my first AFI album, their previous two albums and following two are just as good and deserve your 15 bucks.
1. Ride the Lightning - Metallica
Song for song, this is my favorite Metallica album. Picking a favorite Metallica album is like picking a favorite child though...you shouldn't do it because you love them all in their own way and for different reasons. "Ride the Lightning" deals with the topic of death, each song explores different death experiences. The standout song and fan favorite has to be "Fade to Black," a sad story about suicide that features one of my favorite guitar solos of all time. This album was written and performed by many fans' favorite lineup of Lars, James, Kirk, and Cliff. This 1984 masterpiece concludes with one of their best instrumentals "The Call of Ktulu."
Like my list? If not, comment with your own top 5! It's harder than you might think to narrow it down.
There's been a great video going around the internet for a few weeks now on disc golf sign language produced by the Deaf Disc Golf Association. This is a great way to communicate with deaf and NON-deaf disc golfers. Those that hear know how annoying it can be when someone is talking while you're throwing or otherwise trying to concentrate. If you learn a few of the signs, you can avoid being THAT guy. Most of these signs work well when trying to communicate with someone on another fairway, it's certainly better than yelling at the top of your lungs to ask your buddy a question.
Happy 4th of July weekend to everyone! Thank you to all of the troops out there that continue to keep our way of life safe. I've got a few moments with the computer at my in-laws get-together so I thought I'd share some of my thoughts on making time for my favorite game.
Disc golf is by far my favorite hobby/sport/activity but these days I'm finding it increasingly hard to make time to play. With a one year old at home, I just can't be gone like I used to. If I'm out playing with my frisbees, my wife is at home alone with the baby. Oh yeah, did I mention my wife is pregnant with #2 and we live in Texas...and it's summer...
I'm not going to lie, I feel like I'm going through a mini midlife crisis. I'm realizing that I'm not able to do everything I want to do and where I'm seeing that most clearly displayed is disc golf. This is the first time I've had trouble accepting the new role of parenthood. I love my son more than anything and don't mind the extra work to care for him, or to get up late at night, or to change the nuclear bombs that go off in his diapers. But the one fact-of-life that has taken time getting used to is the decreased ability to make personal decisions regarding my time. My decisions get made for me by our budget and our family needs.
It's the control freak in me, I guess. Am I the only control freak here? Maybe this is the death of my control freak. Maybe that's a good thing.
I just can't wait until we're in cooler weather and the baby is older so he'll enjoy going out more. In the meantime, I'll just have to man up.
My advice to all of the dad's out there: MAN UP! You're disc golf game might suffer a little temporarily but c'mon, there's no substitute for that little child that squeals "Dada" as he runs up to hug me as hard as he can.