Kramer: What’s today?
Newman: It’s Thursday.
Kramer: Really? Feels like Tuesday.
Newman: Tuesday has no feel. Monday has a feel, Friday has a feel, Sunday has a feel….
Kramer: I feel Tuesday and Wednesday..
Seinfeld was a show about New York. Of course, the stories revolved around four self-centered dwellers of The City, but there was never any doubt in each episode where the show took place, even though it was mostly filmed in Los Angeles. After 9/11/2001, I think those of us who lived through that day can feel a Tuesday now, just like Kramer.
The 10th anniversary of the attacks was Sunday, but for me 9/11 will always stick in my mind as a Tuesday. It’s supposed to be the most mundane, nondescript day of the week. No longer hanging on to the weekend, it’s not yet “hump day” or anywhere close to TGIF. It’s just, Tuesday. And yet, waking up on that morning in suburban Chicago, driving to work, hearing the aftermath of the first tower strike, then watching the towers fall on TV in the office break room, that gave Tuesday a feeling. A feeling like I had taken all my Tuesdays for granted, living inside borders that hadn’t been breached since the war of 1812.
In the U.S., Tuesday is also new record release day. It just so happens that my favorite album of all time hit record stores on 9/11/2001, the now-obscure band Honey’s third album, appropriately titled Three. The album was not a success, and the band disbanded soon after its release. Even still, I manged to discover this band in college, and upon first listen of their final album, I was hooked. Today, I still find myself listening to something from this album at least once a week, and if I had to pick one song to play on the proverbial desert island, my waterlogged, but somehow still functional music device would be spinning “Missing You”.
There’s something very simple about this song, and yet I think that’s where its beauty lies. In the intro, the band blends lower-octave chords on a piano with an electric lead guitar so well, that it takes a few listens to pick out the two instruments separately. “Missing You” is a classic builder, starting with just those two instruments, building with drums, adding harmonized vocals by the Brothers Moss. The pre-chorus steps up to the edge of the cliff, then flies right off with a full-on wash of lead guitar with Doug Moss out in front on pained vocals with “every single breath you wanted…” After verse two and chorus repeat, the guitar solo punches in without trying anything fancy. In fact it feels like it could be right at home in some long-forgotten 80’s AOR band, but somehow Honey lifts it up to something higher. As that lead part ascends up the scale, it feels like a prayer.
Is it possible to be dead-0n direct and vague at the same time? I think the lyrics here achieve just that. It’s crystal clear that the singer misses someone and that he’s probably imagining that person is there (“All around me fades, and I’m still amazed that you’re here”). It’s hard to tell who he’s missing though. Is it a lost love, a family member, a friend? What is obvious is the loss that Moss conveys. The hurt is palpable, he “can’t recall feeling at all”, and yet he’s still reliving “every single breath…every single step”.
Today, 10 years after that infamous 2nd Tuesday in September, I’m determined not to take this Tuesday for granted. All of us who don’t know a name on that memorial were blessed to only watch the tragedy from afar, but those two building-shaped holes, perpetually filling with water, surrounded by names of the fallen, should also remind us to find the gift we’re given in living another day, even a mundane Tuesday, and maybe hug somebody we might be missing someday down the line.