Sunday, April 29, 2012
How are you supposed to know if the stuff people tell you really is true? Seriously. How can I possibly know if the steak I had last night really was…”Grilled to perfection”…like they said it would be? What exactly are the standards of “Grilled Perfection” in steakology? I don’t know. And how many times have you seen “New and Improved” on a box or bottle? That’s a “Pants on Fire” if I ever heard one. How do you “Improve” something that’s “New”? Is that toothpaste I just bought really going to make my teeth 3 times whiter like the television commercials say? What if it’s just 2.75 times whiter? How would I know? They claim their mouthwash will kill 99% of odor causing bacteria in my mouth. I don’t recall anybody showing up to do a “Before” inventory. So how do they make that call? There’s that sleep aid they say will make me fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer. First I’d like to ask…than what? And then…how am I going to know if I don’t stay awake and watch the clock? What happens if you don’t “Rinse and Repeat”? And if you’ve never met me how can you make anything…”Just the way I like it”? I don’t know…maybe life has just made me too cynical these days. But I’ll bet that just recently you too received a mailer from a store that said “Everything’s on Sale. Nothing’s Held Back” on one side. And then listed everything that’s NOT on sale and IS held back…on the other.
Wednesday, April 25, 2012
I’m telling you right now that this getting old crap isn’t for sissies. It takes a real man to stand right up…and shuffle off to the bathroom to pee three or four times a night. Yes sir! And you can’t be faint of heart with fiber. No sir! You’ve got to take it…take it like a man. A hopefully regular man. And these tests you have to start taking…geez. You feel like your back in high school except most of these tests end in “oscopy” and involve various bodily orifices that are usually much more comfortable with stuff going in the opposite direction. I don’t think I’ll ever forget those words the doctor spoke at my first sigmoidoscopy…”We’re only going up about three feet.” Sissies need not apply. I’ll leave you today with this. I didn’t write it…wish I had…but I think it’s most appropriate. At age 4 success is not peeing in your pants. At age 12 success is having friends. At age 16 success is having a driver’s license. At age 20 success is having sex. At age 35 success is having money. At age 50 success is having money. At age 60 success is having sex. At age 70 success is having a driver’s license. At age 75 success is having friends. At age 80 success is not peeing in your pants. - Unknown
Sunday, April 22, 2012
It was a spring evening at the church social soirée when an old man stepped up to the microphone and began to sing. “Time and again I've longed for adventure...Something to make my heart beat the faster” Not the strong tenor of his youth, but a voice well aged from a once quite dashing man well aged. And a voice that was true…so true. “What did I long for?...I never really knew...Finding your love I've found my adventure” Was this…their song? “Touching your hand my heart beats the faster...All that I want in all of this world is you “ I wonder if she can hear him now. I hope so. He must have loved her very much. The old man sang on. “You are the promised kiss of springtime...That makes the lonely winter seem long...You are the breathless hush of evening... That trembles on the brink of a lovely song” There’s not much I can add to this…there’s not much I should. “You are the angel glow that lights a star...The dearest things I know are what you are...Some day my happy arms will hold you... And someday I'll know that moment divine” As he came to the end of the song I could see a single tear start down a weathered face, but I could also still see the twinkle in an old man’s eye. “When all the things you are…are mine” See you soon sweetheart…see you soon.
Thursday, April 19, 2012
So, it was when I got up the other night to do what you usually get up in the middle of the night to do when it first happened. I realized as I got to the bathroom that I was shuffling along using small steps. You know, the way really old guys shuffle along. “Why” was my first thought…then ”Of course” was my second. I got it. A wave of understanding flowed over me and a whole lot of stuff began to make sense. It’s practice! That’s what it is…practice! Just like when I got to the kitchen yesterday, knowing I was there for a very good reason and then not knowing what the heck the very good reason was. Practice! I asked my wife the same question twice the other day. Now I know why. Practice! How cool is this? My brain is actually practicing…Geezerness! So, when my time comes…I’ll be really good at it. We all know that practice makes perfect and now I realize that my brain is practicing all the time. I’ll be a perfect Geezer. Incredible don’t you think? My brain is really working hard to get me in shape to repeat stuff, forget things and do the Geezer Shuffle with the best of them. I’ll be a Geezer’s Geezer. Hall of Fame level. Now, I don’t expect this Geezer thing to happen any time soon, but I’m telling you…with a brain that practices as hard as mine…I’ll be ready.
Wednesday, April 18, 2012
Cool is still...well...cool. It’s an expression that’s been with us forever and will probably be going strong long after we’re not. Because it just works. Everyone knows exactly what it means no matter how it’s used. It’s cool, he’s cool, she’s cool...even...not cool. And there are degrees of coolness that can be used when someone or something falls short of being stand alone cool. You put a weasel word in front of it like “kinda” or “sorta” or you designate a specific something that reduced the potential coolness factor…like it woulda been cool if. Cool was cool long before groovy was groovy. Cool was hip before during and long after hip was hip. Side note...if you’re hip now, you’re probably not very cool. And when far out was in...cool was and still is the adjective of choice. And through the years though others have tried…none of those pretenders has ever been as cool...as cool. And when you think about it...isn’t that pretty cool?
Saturday, April 14, 2012
As I heard myself say, “When are the kids coming over?” I suddenly had a very strange thought. The kids…are all in their thirties. The kids…have kids. The kids finished college years ago. Two of the kids have Master’s degrees. The kids have traveled the world. They own their own homes…and I still call them the kids. "They’re not the kids any more are they?" my brain asked. Well…it was my heart that answered…"Yes they are"…they’re MY kids. And always will be. My oldest is a father now with two beautiful little girl kids of his own. But I can still remember the blond haired, blue eyed little boy who used to hold my hand and kiss me good night. He’s still my kid. My youngest son has a Master’s degree and lives in Chicago now. But once, at a three year old’s birthday party at Chucky Cheese, said costumed rodent scared the bejesus out of said three year old. I can still see the pizza and pop scattering in every direction as he scrambled across the table to get to the safety of Daddy’s arms. I’m still the Daddy. He’s still my kid. And my youngest kid…my daughter…a Mom to two little boys of her own. A teacher and a holder of a Master’s degree in Education. But there are times when I can still see the same little angel who used to fall asleep on my shoulder in that old rocking chair. She’s still my angel. She’s still my kid. So yeah…for as many years as I have left I guess I’ll always be asking, “When are the kids coming over?” because they’ll always be…my kids.
Friday, April 13, 2012
Oh...life’s unanswered questions. Those great wonderings we’re constantly having...knowing full well we'll never get real answers for the whys or wherefores. A lot of mine I’ve realized get asked as I’m driving. How about you? I’m always asking, “What’s your hurry...idiot?!” and “Do you always drive like a moron or is this a new thing for you?!” and I don’t know how many times I’ve asked, “Did you know they recently invented a device called a turn signal?!” But I get no answers. I also seem to ask a lot of them while I’m watching sports on TV. Perhaps you too have asked...”What the heck was he thinking?!”, “Are we watching the same game here?!” or “Are you kidding me?!” Life’s unanswered questions. Frustrating. And life seems to be full of them. “Who left the lights on in the basement?” Nothing. “Who took the last cup of coffee and didn’t refill the pot?” No response. “Which one of you has the muddy feet?” Silence. We ask...but we don’t receive. Life is full of unanswered questions. Just once, wouldn’t you like to know...”What’s the deal with that one shoe in the middle of the road?”
Wednesday, April 11, 2012
Bugs...Hmmm...Now that the weather is breaking they’re everywhere aren’t they? Bugs...They come in all shapes and sizes. You’ve got your hard ones and soft ones...big ones and little ones...your crawlie ones, flying ones, hopping ones and some that do all of the aforementioned activities. Some bite, some sting and some just buzz around your ears at night while you slap yourself silly trying to send them to bug heaven. Wouldn’t it be interesting to sit down over a cup of coffee with the Big Guy himself and ask...”So, just what did you have in mind here with the Bug thing?” Maybe He just had a bunch of leftover spare parts and nothing to do one afternoon. Or maybe He just couldn’t pass up a great buy on legs and antennas at heaven’s dollar discount warehouse. Or maybe He looked down and thought...”You people really bug me sometimes...Hmmm...Bug...now there’s an idea”. Or maybe...we’ll just never know the reason for our...Bugs. So, maybe we should just live and let live. On the other hand...s’cuse me while I whack that skeeter.
Monday, April 9, 2012
Now that the winter seems to be behind us, activity around the backyard has picked up quite a bit. So, here are some backyard observations I’ve made that I’d like to share. I have observed that birds are really good landers. No kidding. Now, I know they’re supposed to be…being professional birds and all, but these guys are really good. Take a wee, small tree branch in a gusty wind...no problem. They’ll nail it 99.9% of the time. Very impressive. I also observed that squirrels can’t remember crap. This one guy took the time to bury all those acorns in the fall…takes a winter nap…and now there he sits in the middle of the back yard…head in paws…can’t remember where he buried a damn one. Like I said, squirrels can’t remember crap. And geese have no sense of balance. I don’t know how many uneven formations of geese in flight I’ve observed. Unbalanced flying chevrons with four geese on the right and only two on the left….six geese on the left and only three on the right. You’d think some goose would notice and give a heads up…”Hey Larry, you’re on the wrong side bud!” But they just keep on flying…unbalanced…like they just don’t care. Overall I've observed that observing is pretty cool. If you keep your eyes open…you see stuff.
Friday, April 6, 2012
With apologies to my younger readers, but can you really…fool Mother Nature? And do you think they really did want to teach the world to sing in perfect harmony? Hmmm…I wonder. What if we really were in good hands and they really were like a good neighbor? This would be a better world wouldn’t it? Ahhh…and if only it always was good to the last drop and did build strong bodies twelve ways…life would be so much sweeter. When the rubber meets the road though, you really do expect more from a leader…don’t you? And just a couple of questions for you to ponder if I may be so bold. Should we really…leave the driving to them? And not to cause any problems, but doesn’t a deer…run like a Deere? And there has to be at least a couple of things around here that say lovin’ like somethin’ from the oven. In the end though, when you care enough to send the very best…it’s always mmm…mmm…good. And remember, as we cross the friendly skies asking “Where’s the beef?”…parts is parts.
Wednesday, April 4, 2012
This morning, I saw a rising sun turn morning dew into dancing diamonds on a freshly mown lawn. Then…I let Jack the dog in and saw…as he dashed across the living room floor…feet soaked from those dancing diamonds splattering grass clippings from that freshly mown lawn everywhere. Interesting how the very same elements…looked at in slightly different circumstances…can create two very different pictures. The romance can be so fleeting once the splattering begins. So, moving on, it was while I was driving to the studio that I saw the sign out in front of one of the local churches. It read, “I need Thee every hour”. I thought that sounded a little selfish though. I’m sure there must be others out there who might need “Thee” every once in awhile too. And here you’re trying to hog almost all of “Thee’s” time. Driving back home I saw that possum again. Still playing…”possum”. He’s getting really good at it. He hasn’t moved in over a week. Stopping at the traffic light by the cemetery, I saw an old man sitting on the ground with his hand resting on a tombstone. A weekly conversation I imagine. And when I got back home, in the backyard I saw a chubby, little, red breasted Robin…bob, bob, bobbing along…with about a foot and a half of toilet paper in its beak. I don’t even want to know where that might have come from…but that’s what I saw today.
Sunday, April 1, 2012
I read a wonderful quote the other day. “Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.” Now, I don’t know who said it, but whoever you are...thank you. The more I thought about it, the more it did...make me smile. I remember the tears from a broken heart long ago. Sure, I cried because it was over, but thinking about it, would my life be as full if I’d never experienced the wonders of that love? I don’t think so. Should I give up the memories of sharing and caring... laughing and loving...just to avoid the tears of their endings? I think I’d be a much poorer man if I did. I remember well the pain of my Father’s death. I don’t know when I’ve cried more. But when I got past the tears, I don’t know when I’ve smiled more. I shared 46 years with the greatest man I’ve ever known. The joy of his life far outweighs the pain of his death. Tears come when something beautiful ends...but wasn’t it beautiful? “Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.”