Posts Tagged ‘charlotte’

Always So Magic

6 December 2006

Dear J-,

There’s a line from The Wedding Singer that sounded great — Robbie, Adam Sandler’s character, says he wants to be a songwriter, one who’s going to write a song that makes people think “Man, I get what he was thinking when he wrote that.” Isn’t that the whole purpose of writing anything?

I’m back on the East Coast again again for the first time in what, eight years? At least since I was in school, and I can only think of everything that’s changed since then. Was it always so lonely, this being apart, a whole continent in between?

(I don’t wanna be lonely, baby, please help me)
I wanna love you all over

— Huey Lews and the News, Do You Believe in Love

I know that it’s got to be some kind of minor hell, or more precisely, some kind of karma for never appreciating all the thousands of kindnesses theVet does for me every day. Man that sounds horrible, like I just miss having a servant. Let them eat cake, that kind of stuff. Lonely’s more than that. Days like these, nights like these, I feel lonely in my own skin. I just don’t know what to do by myself any more. No, lonely’s gotta be somewhere between the last seat on the bus and watching the lights flicker and glow out at closing time. It’s empty chairs and desperate calls to 411, trying to remember, trying to reconnect. Lonely’s knowing just how many vacant minutes fill each dark night. It’s 18 000 days — 540 000 hours of knowing exactly what you need and learning how badly you picked that bet. All this time I thought the future was just more of the same, and I dreaded it a thousand times more than the million slow deaths of humiliation I’d already had in my life — the petrification of actually having to stand up and speak in front of everyone, everyone’s eyes, everyone’s expectations weighing a thousand tons of stares.

Dream a dream of the future with me — grey at the houses of worship, lines changed to canyons (you know I’m now almost halfway to where grampa was the first time we met?) — but that’s only the part I can’t control. I’ve said it before: now I can’t wait. Each day is a day closer, and thus another chance to discover. Yeah, I know it sounds completely Polyanna, sunshine lollipops and rainbows and yet I still can’t help but feel a little giddy about it all. Maybe it’s just who I am, but I’m still learning, learning that love is in the details. Figure it this way: 80 years, 365 days, 2 times the sky catches fire at dusk and dawn. 56 000 opportunities to share your life and amazing times while the world reminds you it’s all still magic, it’s all so magic.



Procrastination Prognostication

2 December 2006

Dear J-

It’s not going to get done. Either that, or I chicken out and never show you the site. I’ve got a fair amount of work to do around the house, after all, and there’s no reason I need to sit here and type out what I know to be lies lies and more damn lies. I’m going to go to Charlotte next week (let’s hear it for EPRI!) and it seems like every time I head out on the road it’s with a certain sense of foreboding and fear, like that silver hammer was about to descend. I make a poor business traveler; I know how airplanes work, and the statistics show how safe it is, but all the same I check my dismal track record in picking grocery store lines (why yes, we do take your third-party out-of-state expired checks!) and traffic lanes and understand that it’s not personal, it’s just fate.

For the longest time growing up I thought that I’d be in a wheelchair by now — some kind of accident would take my mobility; I recognize it as some sort of odd cry for help or perhaps attention, as if I wasn’t already interesting enough being me. So, hi. Me me me. You? Really? Great, me again. Me me me. See you later.

This site is just another manifestation of it — if I really wanted to know how you were doing, I’d just send you a letter and be done with it. Instead I just do stupid stalker-class things like google your name to check what you’ve been up to. Not quite Every Breath You Take yet, but where exactly am I headed with this? How can this possibly end in any kind of happiness?

I’m headed to Charlotte on Monday, and hope to catch up with at least one of the friends I grew up with some time that week — another J, although the last time I saw her was under poor circumstances (her folks had just died in a car crash); there’s some truth to the idea that people you grow up with end up being like siblings. Sometimes I wonder if, had I ended up with someone from high school, it would have been more about comfort and convenience (there I go, losing the high school sweetheart audience; please come back, I’ll be nice).

There are still relatively few things I can say, hard and fast, as absolutes; the best I can offer is that if there’s a deadline, I will wait for it. If it can be done tomorrow, well, why not? I never read Quest for Truth until a few minutes ago (back then, because of the burning envy of the unpublished, now because of the wonderful powers of google, lifting back my scalp and POKEing directly into the grey matter beneath). My chores wait until the very last possible minute in a vain attempt to extract the last dregs of enjoyment from this morning.

Barring the far-from-evitable stumbling across the site before I have a chance to spring it on you, then, my biggest fears of today don’t revolve around where I’m sleeping tonight, but what kind of father I’ll be when I’m already so wrapped up in me. Do I just need someone else to lie reassurances in my ear, or is past performance really a good indicator of future returns? I tell you what, I kinda aped it up with my cousin to impress Missy at that buffet restaurant (yeh, the one she later told me to stay away from) — for some reason, the fourteen-year-old mind is so focussed on one thing that it stops thinking of implications one step beyond. Yes, if she sees me taking care of this toddler, she’ll think what a great father I would be, and therefore want me. I’d think that in the last years of high school, reproduction is not the goal — the act may be, but not the consequence. But really, the funny thing that happened was that I ended up liking it. A lot. Dunno if that was a tipping point, but once I forgot that I was trying to impress a girl and concentrated on actually taking care of my little cousin (she graduated, J-, graduated and wants to study music already; how old have I become?) I found that I actually was enjoying it.

So there it is, dopey as it might sound. I’ve wanted kids since I was fourteen, and not just for the process. There’s something magical about watching someone else learn things; like the universe being born anew in each amazing moment. It’s like I’m some odd cult member … join, join … you will like it … although I know that not everyone is probably suited for kids, that doesn’t stop me from thinking that your life wouldn’t be better for knowing at least a few. Maybe that’s the real question I should have asked fifteen years ago — I’m going to know a few really amazing folks (one of which I’ll meet for the first time in May) and I want you along for the ride, J- … life is going to become incalculably more interesting in six five months.


Here she comes walking ‘cross the sand
She’ll never know how she blows my mind
She’s there with the chemicals in my brain
Spinning softly ’round my head
I’m gonna give in, I’ll never change my mind
I feel it now, tonight is the night
And why should I try to resist
When it’s calling out to me

— Ash, Let it Flow