Great strides have been made in the world of optical disc packaging since then. Eventually, they phased out the packaging as people got hip to environmental concerns and unnecessary cardboard waste but on Christmas Eve it was CD’s in longboxes and brunch at the Green Tea Room on 86th Street with mum. Then over to Grandma and Grandpas in the back of the 1986 Ford Tempo with CBS-FM spinning The Ronettes, Bobby Helms and Brenda Lee. We broke Dad out of jail on a day like today – it was cold and gray. Dad would smile at just about every monochrome sky from November to February and say, “What a beautiful day!” – and not only did we wholeheartedly agree but we knew what he meant in so many ways – especially on days like today as we headed south on the FDR with 1275 York Avenue in our unspoken rearview. And now every time a monochrome day like this arrives, it makes me think of that day, driving on the FDR. “Here comes the rain again… Falling on my head like a memory.” I remember dad changing a tire in the rain on the way to a wedding. “Ghost in the Machine” was in the tape deck. At certain fleeting moments the windshield wipers and Stewart Copeland were in sync. We got the flat (rear tire, drivers side) about halfway through “Spirits in the Material World” and dad was back in the car, albeit completely drenched and needing a stiff drink, by the middle of “Invisible Sun”. Not too shabby – 11 minutes to change a flat, in the rain? Dad missed his calling at the Daytona 500. I bet all the while, even as dad was most likely en route to a wedding he had no interest in attending but was probably forced to by in-law affinity, he’d admit every little thing my mom did was magic and he’d have done anything to make her happy.