As I was sitting in traffic earlier today listening to The Bouncing Souls’ album Anchors Aweigh I realized that over the last year their music has not only found it’s way into my heart but their music has made me love New Jersey again and for that I am incredibly grateful.
I hated New Jersey for a while after I moved to North Carolina, really just hated it. I would say I’m from there and smile when asked but I didn’t like to think about it. I let what a some lousy people did to me ruin, in my mind, 18 otherwise good years in The Garden State. My parents were born in New Jersey and my grandparents were too (except for my mom’s mom who was born in New York City and sold apples on the streets with her family during The Great Depression). My three grandparents who have passed away are all buried in New Jersey and I hope they are resting in peace because I still miss each of them a lot, and I’m sad that being in Jersey last year for my grandma and grandpa’s funerals bothered me so much.
I don’t know that I can even name many things that are great about New Jersey (I’ve found I actually prefer to pump my own gas), but it doesn’t matter. The Bouncing Souls songs and Greg Attonito’s voice have reminded me of the great moments and things I experienced, and it’s probably not a coincidence that my two ‘favorite’ songs of the Souls many great ones would probably have to be the Jersey oriented ‘So Jersey’ and ‘Ghosts on the Boardwalk’.
Even though I’m “ready to walk a path that is new”, Hasbrouck Heights, New Jersey will always and forever be my home.