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coverpic flag US - New Jersey - Full Moon 56 - 05/07/01

Danielson Famile
Fetch the Compass Kids
Sounds Familyre Records/Secretly Canadian

All that standing and sitting and church on a Sunday morning. Me, just 14 and fighting back some serious throw-up: Breathe... Easy... That's it...

I tell my mother I don't think I'll be able stand for the next hymn. She clears her throat for harmony and I'm still sitting there when the congregation rises to sing: Look down... Look at your shiny shoes...

It's working, I'm going to make it. I sit and stare at my feet and bre-e-e-e-athe all the way through the tithing and the offerring and the singing again and soon they're doing that recessional-finale thing they do: Good choice... With the socks I mean... Not pulled up too tightly... Casually loose ... stylishly droopy...

It finally comes time for our pew to stand and mosey. I lift my eyes off the ground and get up, seeing now the pious line ahead of us: "Nice sermon, pastor." "Thank you. Good to see you." "Nice sermon, Pastor." "Thank you. Good to see you here." That's it. I know now I can't stop it from happening. Can't swallow that too strong certainty coming up and out and all over that old lady's fur coat in front of me. My mother is so embarassed. She insists on paying for the dry cleaning: I'm too sick to care.

The Danielson Famile aren't your typical day at church either. Their songs of salvation and wonder sound like a snake handling medicine show all wigged out and wired on campfire coffee. Handclaps and glockenspiel and two teenage drummers. Guitar and organ and big Christian smiles. The whole clan clad in white. The boys are dressed up as hospital orderlies. The girls are pale as nurses.

A big red heart on every sleeve.

Jesus, our Methodist Youth Group retreats were never this fun.

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