...What are you listening to these days? (Rita Coolidge, Debbie Boone, Elton John, Pitbull)

...What do you like to listen to?

I asked Allen, the fellow whose Ford Contour I had just given a jump to in the Safeway parking lot.

"Anything. Just about anything,"
He said, his Abe Lincoln frame, Ducks hat, and skinny mustache blowing in the rainy wind.

I said.
Anything lately you're especially enjoying?

-"Anything. My kid has me listening to 107.5. You know, Justin Bieber, Justin Timberlake, Pitbull...all that stuff."

I said.
What did you listen to before your kid got you into that?

His face brightened.
"Elton John, Bee Gees, all the real music from the '70s. Debbie Boone's 'You Light Up My Life.' They don't make music like that anymore."

A little different now.
I said.
My dad got me into The Carpenters.

- "Oh yeah, they were great too!" 
He said.
And I'll tell you who was just...
(He searched for the right word)
...just perfect: Rita Coolidge. I mean, that woman could SING. And she was beautiful. She was so good."

I said.
I've got two of her records.

I paused. The rain was dropping as I gathered the jumper cables.

You having a good weekend?
I asked.

- "My weekend's just starting,"
He said, hands in pocket. "Three days off now."

You work around here?
I inquired.

- "Up in Ridgefield. Vitamin store. Not exactly glamorous. Not what I thought I'd be doing at my age. Making $9.80 an hour."

He shook my hand.

- "Thanks for the jump."

I'm Joseph.
I said.
Have a really good weekend, Allen. 

He smiled and drove away, and if there is any extra magic in the air today then I hope there is a radio station playing some Rita Coolidge.

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