Tom Ebner is a friend of mine. We met going to college in Nashville. I left the university after a year and transferred to OSU, but he stuck things out. And we kept up after going our separate ways.
I’m not a very good letter writer, but Tom is. He’s consistent. He’s diligent. And if I send him a letter, I know that I’ll get a letter back promptly. I’m not as good at writing letters. I let them sit, get back in a month or so. I’ve let our connections lapse and have to restart them the next time we actually talk in person. He’s also taught me that that’s ok. It’s ok to fall down sometimes. It’s ok to feel bad sometimes. Lord knows we've both been on the ground our fair share.
Tom and I also share songs. I wrote Ohio mostly because of an informal songwriting challenge based on a text message. I’ve probably heard more in-progress songs from him than I have from anyone. And he’s probably heard more of mine than anyone.
The first track on his first EP is one of my favorite songs to come out in the past year or so. I put it on repeat sometimes. It makes me happy. I’m going to write out the lyrics as I hear them - like someone just invited me into their house, made tea for the both of us, waited for the steep, then sat down on a plump couch to start a conversation after writing letters back and forth for a few months.
Thank you, Tom. Thank you, Nemo. This is one of many photos I snapped in quick succession to startle you while we hung out with your very good dog.