Three miles into my walk a wave of knowledge washed over me and I had to stop from dancing in place and screaming triumphantly at the sky.
“Act like you have been here before, be cool,” whispered a knowing voice inside my head.
The response was fast and furious, “fuck you and your need to be cool. I don’t care. Love me or hate me for who I am and not who I or anyone else wishes I could be.”
I won’t confirm or deny having done a little jig when I realized I had just figured out what someone had been lying about and what they hadn’t.
Instead I’ll say it was good we weren’t face to face because I would have been able to look far deeper than they might have been comfortable.
That two way street is deep man, so very deep.
My Guitar Doesn’t Weep Gently
I found out this cover was available on iTunes and picked it up the other day and have probably listened to it a dozen times.
Something about it calls to me in a way I can’t explain, but I suspect a few might understand.
Tuesday morning I moved with great speed and purpose through the airport so that I could pick up my teenage son at the gate.
My role as a guardian of an unaccompanied minor provided me with the means to travel back to a time before 9-11 when it was common to meet travelers as they exited the plane.
But the role as time traveler didn’t help me pass through the people who didn’t recognize my need to freight train my way by them.
I said excuse me and kept going, quite aware that I was early but unable to walk slowly because this could be the one flight that actually hit warp speed and showed up an hour early.
That big lug with the huge head, bigger heart and somewhat blurry picture would have understood.
He would have forgone his natural urge to inspect and explore everyone and everything and let out a series of barks that would have cleared space.
‘Cuz he knew some people don’t wait until old age to rage against the dying of the light.
And he would have known a father who hadn’t seen his son since January 1 would have been the poster child for impatience.
But he wasn’t there to pretend to be a service dog instead of stalwart companion and perhaps give dear old dad someone to hug two or three times before the landing.
Instead the aforementioned teenager was surprised to be lifted off of the ground in a bear hug, but unlike days long past his feet barely left the ground.
Not because he was too heavy, but the kid is almost as tall as his old man.
Seventeen Years & Counting
He caught me staring at him and asked why I was looking at him like I had never seen him before.
“You’ll be 17 in December and I’ll make a point to count your fingers and toes the same way I did the day you were born.”
“It is not my birthday, you can wait to count.”
“You aren’t going to want me to count then so I figured I’d get an early start, no time like the present to get things done.”
That kid rolled his eyes at me, but smiled anyway and we rode off into the sunset.
Not so many days later I am sitting here at the computer writing while he is wrapped up in his phone or a book on the other side of a small living room.
He hears me open my beer, turns his head and tells me it is not a good idea.
I laugh and ask him if he is going to tell his sister about the contents of the fridge.
“It is beer, eggs and some meat. You barely have anything in it.”
“I am a pseudo bachelor kid, living a pseudo bachelor life. Just trying to have a little fun.”
“Have fun without beer.”
We both laugh. The day he got here he quizzed me about the beer and the alcohol in the closet.
I asked him how often he has seen me drink more than one beer at a time and he said almost never.
We repeated the same bit about the Scotch, Tequila and Vodka in the closet but I didn’t tell him sometimes I have more than one when I am here alone.
During moments where I am responsible for no one other than myself I might have a second, but when the kids are around almost never.
Won’t be any different during his stay, got too much I have to do with him and not enough time.
Need to be sharp because some conversations can’t be planned. Doesn’t matter how much you care about someone or how much they care about you, some talks just have to happen when they happen.
- The Rising– Bruce Springsteen
- Happy– Bruce Springsteen
- If Eternity Should Fail– Iron Maiden
- Once Upon A Dream– Lana Del Rey
- Star Trek– Michael Giacchino
- Enterprising Young Men– Michael Giacchino
- Gentle On My Mind– Glen Campbell
- Tapestry– Carole King
How To Tear Down A Wall
There are some who say I am better at pushing people away then tearing down a wall.
And there are those who say different, but the question isn’t who says what about who but what we say about ourselves.
The significance of what we see when we close or eyes or look in the mirror is much greater than what others say they see.
Grapevine, Flowermound, Dallas, Plano and Colleyville have felt our feet and our not quite winged steed move through the streets.
The boy’s old man has done his best to show him many different things and to help paint a picture that makes more sense.
Saturday night I’ll take him to shul to show him some community and then we’ll head off for the next part of our adventure.
Knowing there is supposed to be more time and opportunity to do certain things together will be a song I sing silently inside my head as a reminder to try to be patient.
Not because I can’t or won’t, but because sometimes there is this feeling that if we don’t do some things now we might not get to do them later.
It is part of that great contradiction of life.
The Do-Over doesn’t exist for most of us.
We make the choices we make and live with them as best we can.
If we are lucky the regrets we have are few.
I remind him today is our guarantee and tomorrow is a promise that may not be fulfilled.
So we move with intent and purpose, seeking joy and collecting experiences.