You gotta say one thing about country music: It gives back.
Maybe that's because of the down-home folks who become stars in the industry and actually care enough about their fans to mingle with them, relate to them, and sing to them like they all understand one another. Country songs, after all, do seem to strike pretty good chords when it comes to reflecting everyday life for us commoners.
All I know is, the girls all seemed to go crazy, for some reason, when country music star and apparently good-looker Joe Nichols hit the stage at The Phil! in Shiprock last night.
I used to have black, wavy hair like him.
If you wonder what happened to it, just ask my kids. When people asked them where they got their curly hair, they were quick to answer, "Dad gave us his!"
Looks aside, I like Joe's music. His voice is a natural for the country sound, and while I'm not a drinking man who appreciates as much the required drinking songs a country singer must have on the menu, I do like his other hit songs, such as the No. 1 smash hit "Gimmie That Girl."
But what I really like, appreciate and admire about stars such as Joe Nichols is when they take the time to give and give when it's unexpected.
Joe already was promoting a great cause with his catchy Nichols for Dimes work with the March of Dimes. But when he strolled into Farmington on Friday to sign autographs, and then performed Friday night in Shiprock, he readily volunteered to help a more local cause.
One, I might add, that exists because of YOUR giving spirit, which this community is so, so good about.
The Glove with Love program started with a simple column a few years ago asking you folks to clean out your closets and garages and donate any old baseball gloves you find so that we can put them on the hands of kids who can't afford their own.
I used to coach baseball at all levels, from college clinics on down to kids who, when you yelled "Go home! Go home!," they forgot all about home plate and thought you meant the house, and thus raced into the parking lot with mom or dad in tow.
One thing any coach who has ever dealt with young kids will tell you, not all of them come from the same background. Some have family who cares about them and can provide for them, and other kids come with neither behind them.
I've seen kids wear gloves with ducktape holding it together, and many with gloves dad used that are way too big.
I've seen kids dropped off by gangster cousins who may or may not come back to pick them up, and that cousin was the only one who cared to get rid of them on a ball field instead of the street.
I've seen a lot. So has any other coach of boys and girls who want to play the sport just for fun or something to do, but can't afford the fancy stuff many of us grow spoiled to having and expect before hitting the field. These kids just would like a simple ball glove.
That's where your giving and Glove with Love comes in, and also Joe Nichols.
Joe agreed to meet with me and several kids backstage prior to his concert and endorse the Glove idea by signing baseballs, gloves and presenting gloves for keeps to a few local kids.
Those kids may not have a clue who Joe Nichols is or what he does all the time, but they knew he made them feel very special for a brief moment in time that to them will forever be remembered as a lengthy chapter in life.
Thanks, you all who give.
Thanks to Phil! promoter Mark Amo, a loyal supporter.
This kicks off the Glove with Love 2012 drive, and you'll be hearing more in the coming days. There's also a link to it at the bottom of our web page on daily-times.com. Please check it out.
You can make glove donations, but no cash, to us at The Daily Times, 401 N. Allen, or at any fire station or to any police officer. They'll get it to me, and I'll get it to the coaches, social workers, youth leaders and others who call or write to help their kids in need. We also give the adult gloves to Special Olympians, and they treasure keeping their own glove.
So, play ball!
And thank Joe when you see him.
Troy Turner is the editor of The Daily Times. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org; on Twitter @troyturnerDT, or at P.O. Box 450, Farmington, N.M. 87401.