My superpower, and two related stories

I have an interesting-but-not-all-that-useful superpower: The ability to remember with surprising specificity where I was the last time I heard a song. (This relates to my recent post Music = Home.)

It applies to some spoken-word recordings as well. For example, one day circa 2005, probably in the spring, I was out for a run and listening to a talk from the 2004 Desiring God National Conference, which was on “Sex and the Supremacy of Christ.” It was Piper’s Sunday morning sermon at the conclusion of the conference.

Not surprisingly, a great deal of the sermon was Piper talking about the supremacy and sovereignty of Christ. (You know, the Piper sermon where he talks about that.) But in this particular one, he actually spent 10 minutes or so listing all these aspects of Christ’s supremacy (his deity, his eternality, his knowledge, etc.), and then all these things he’s sovereign over (galaxies, atoms, governments, terrorists, etc.).

My short run in those days was a 2-mile loop in South Park. The first 3/4 mile was flat, but then there was this beast of a hill– not all that steep until the very end, but long– about a half mile. So as I approach the hill, Piper’s warming up with the supremacy section. Then I think, “He’s still going. This is pretty good.” I hit the hill and his volume and intensity are going up. Then he goes into the sovereignty section. He keeps going the whole time I’m climbing this hill, then right as I get to the top, hardest part of the run, he blows it up with the Kuyper quote that every self-respecting YRR guy has tattooed on his back:

There is not a square inch in the whole domain of our human existence over which Christ, who is Sovereign over all, does not cry, “Mine!”

I think I might have actually jumped and pumped my fists, Rocky-style. Man, that was a good run.

(Slightly cooler story: Another time I was listening to a bootleg from Derek Trucks and Susan Tedeschi. At the end of the run I was on the beginning of the encore, and the band’s just sort of messing around, when suddenly Susan leads into a Wilson Pickett-esque “Hey Jude,” with horns and everything. It was so good that I ran an extra mile and a half.)

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Comments

  1. Jake, quick…name some of the songs we heard at mellow mushroom during intern lunches. Go.

    • It works better the other way. I.e., “Oh man, the last time I heard this song was at an intern lunch at Mellow Mushroom.”

      But… Born to Run. Any Way You Want It. Blinded By the Light. Pinball Wizard.

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