So, everywhere I've gone (it seems), I have picked up certain ways of saying things that have stayed with me since. To start with, my family has always had an interesting way of expressing themselves with the English language anyhow (think eccentric, perhaps, as opposed to intellectual), starting and not ending with the smattering of Pennsylvania Dutch that sneaks into our dialogue (does "rutchy", "doppich", "ferhuddled", and "craddel up into the welshkin grip and see the lovely hossel bears" make sense to anyone?)
One of the phrases that has stayed in my vocabulary, I was "given" by a perky young hair stylist from a Wal-mart hair salon. I have since sworn off Wal-mart hair salons, as my hair has been "butchered" too many times, but at the time, I never knew what state (geographical) I'd be in and when...so the allure of the simple walk-in, no-appointment-needed salon at Walmart was too much to resist.
At any rate, as conversations go, the hair stylist asked me what my occupation was (as she hacked at my hair) and when she found out I was an OTR truck driver, she stopped and exclaimed: " Oh, do you just, like, totally, ROCK OUT?"
In the half second that it took me to process an answer, I thought"huh?" as scenes of big city traffic, fighting for a turn to dock, grinding gears, and dodging corncribs and ditches on one-lane farm roads in the depth of the night, replayed in my chronically sleep-deprived mind.
After the moment's hesitation, I looked back at her in the mirror, grinned, and said, "Yeah, that's what I do, that's what all us drivers do...we just rock out. ALL DAY."
Her enthusiasm amused me, but also made me "ponderous."
And in truth, Axl Rose has gotten me through many a night, Bach became a very nice afternoon ritual for my son and I, and Zeppelin and Pearl Jam...well it's nice to have friends for long miles. LOL.
Regardless, "rock out" has taken a turn for a much broader meaning and it is used liberally in our family. Stereotypically, "rock out" can have some negative connotations, and for us it doesn't involve booze or drugs. And lest you think we wander about in a rocker haze, it is possible to rock out to Andres Segovia or a really great rendition of "Jesus Loves Me" (may I recommend the version by Bobby Pinson, check it out here, it's number 12 on the list...).
Back to the broader meaning it took on for us...it's more of an outlook and a decision to revel in the moment regardless of where you are and what irritations you may be putting up with. :)
And out of the mouth of a babe...Not too long ago, I had just started the truck and turned the stereo on, and our son, who was about 2 and a half years old, at the time, said ever so sweetly, "Rock out, Mommy." My eyebrows went up as I looked at him in the mirror and then I had to laugh. I hope our children learn to rock out with life, not just music, with whatever cards are dealt to them.
So..take time to rock out a little today. Corny, perhaps...
but would you have it any other way?