I, I am bleep bleep years old.
On the cusp of a birthday celebration.
A bleep bleep is simply a measure of time I made up, related in Real Time to the melting of the glaciers, the rising of the tides, the shifting of the arterial hardening of the Earth’s Crust, and absolutely None Of Your Business !
I rarely get to make a decent wish before I blow out the candles, so this year I have been practicing ahead of time. I do not have a bucket list, or many regrets, but I do so wish I had one wish, just before the inferno is set ablaze and all the old, over the hill, senior moment jokes ensue.
Yes, yes, I own approximately 47 pairs of reading glasses. Yes, yes I occasionally wear two pairs, because the print on the microwave is sooo small. Yes, yes, I do ride past the garage once in awhile, insecure if I have left my house secure.
So sue me.
At least I am vigilant. And without my significant other, I remember only first names and he recalls the last. It is a pact we have made, and it suits us fine.
I don’t have any apps, nor Instagram account. I have a jazzy phone, but I only use it to make phone calls, to a few and very select group of folks that matter the world to me. I am however, technically gifted enough to create art in digital media, and to blog at will. I can change out the ink on my printer, email and text.
However, I find this supremely annoying, as while everyone seems to be texting and messaging and forwarding, they are supremely lax in the art of conversation.
I say hello.
Then you say hello.
Then I say I love you, and you say I love you back.
My text responses usually come in the form of a one word response such as Yup and Nope or an emoticon of a cow. So fulfilling. So so so...brief.
My pictures, the ones I treasure are in albums I keep on a table in the next room, to flip through when time and distance separate the them from the us. I do not have 52,000 pics to download, nor to lose in a hack attack, as I prefer to be in the moment, to make a memory, to be right in the middle of the action for the full 3-D experience of living.
I am old fashioned.
So sue me.
No please don’t sue me. That involves, lawyers, and legalese, and blah blah blah, plus what is the point. I possess hypersensitive hearing, despite my bleep bleep years, and the noise level in the world is causing us all early onset deafness. No one can hear what the other person is saying because everyone is screaming yet louder to be heard. Performing outrageous acts of unseemly behavior just to get a thumbs up on an Anonymous comment line on a blog or an article no one even bothers to read. Anonymous? Really? I may need two pairs of glasses once in awhile, but you screamers and tantrum makers and pot stirrers remind me of the children in my classroom long ago, who took a time out to gather themselves into fully functioning human beings. We all lose it once in awhile, but this is beyond babble, this is just plain rude.
Plus this is my time for fifteen minutes of fame, so Zip It.
So, here I am supposedly writing about a birthday, and my corroded neural synapses just froze up, and got sidetracked on the way to the round house.
So sue me.
I just plopped my ear buds in and am zoning out on some ancient tunes, surely from a planet far far away, and am at peace once again.
Okay I lied.
So sue me.
I just watched the trailer from the new Star Wars movie, and it made me sad.
Leia...Han...Luke...you look like me!!!!
In fact the bunch of us, from the late 70’s now look like Wookies, and it might have been wiser to take a right turn in the Millenium Falcon and let the Force guide us into retirement. What was it Thomas Wolfe once said, “ You can’t go home again?”
Well, Yoda said that back in the 70’s, and you all should have listened.
For me, the trailer reminded me of home movies. You know, the ones that make you cringe, with bouffant hairdos, white belts, white shoes, drindl skirts, hip huggers on double wide hips, all captured in colors never seen before in nature, on the spectrum of 8mm film. Everyone’s glowing red pupils remind me of a scene from the Exorcist, mouths moving like Charlie Chaplin in a silent movie. No sound, Not a peep. Just herky jerky too cool for words, please shut it off, please turn it off, much too close up close ups of our youth.
Now cut and paste my current physique, spatter me with miscellaneous age spots, tuck me into those hip huggers, ignore the oh the places my body parts could go after years of gravitational forces, and I would take a seat in the Cantina Scene, on a bar stool with Han, and fit right in.
Add a few chin hairs,
and perhaps Yoda could be my clone.
After all, those Wookies are just a few laser treatments, and approximately 30 years of weekly electrolysis appointments away from approximating a Klingon.
I may be older, but I am wiser. After a certain age, even an industrial sized dip in the Botox Vat, and we melt like the witch in the Wizard Of Oz.
You lucky youngsters. My generation will forever be frozen in the spliced film loops of early 8mm, while you are airbrushed ever so delicately into infinity.
This was supposed to be a simple birthday wish.
Now spun completely out of control.
So sue me.
This year, this wish, IS quite simple. As I grow older, I find that wishes are less likely to come true. This year, however, is the year I dedicate myself to the belief that I, have spent my years well.
So well, I deserve a celebration.
I did it right.
I behaved. Well, most of the time. Okay, some of the time. Actually, enough of the time to be nominated for an award.
Maybe not win one, but to at least be nominated
I married well. Well, I married and over time we learned how to be well, and good and kind.
We loved fully.
And forgave when love grew lean,
and times grew hard.
I sacrificed, and asked for nothing I was not willing to pay for, in hard cold sweat and tears.
I set an example for my children by escaping the poverty of my youth. I gave them a good start, and a hard shove, after teaching them all I had learned of self-sufficiency.
I practiced tolerance and shrugged off shame. I gave myself, and my children, a fresh start, a second chance, and room, plenty of room to grow.
Now, on the eve, the cusp, the edge, the brink, the teetering tottering shelf of my bleep bleep year, I, an orphan, with losses piled at my feet, gains heaped at my door, surrender my soul and my will to whatever these final days may entail.
I ask not for good fortune, for there has been plenty,
ask for only the comfort of peace, and a really excellent box of chocolate.
Safety, serenity and a perfect chocolate mustache.
Let others cry, argue and bemoan their fate. Let others rant and wail against the unfairness of their existence, their position on the ladder of success.
For we will never reach equilibrium.
Not in this life.
What is mine is NOT yours.
You can thank me later.
What is yours is NOT mine.
This is me thanking you now.
We only reap what we sow.
Oh yes, we can share and we should.
Yes we can be kind, and we must.
Yes we can reach out and lift up,
as we have been lifted.
But for all of us, life is there for the taking.
Do not come to me with your excuses,
that life is not fair.
Yes, yes it is.
Life is an Open Season,
waiting for each and every one of you.
Cease your complaining, fingerpointing, coveting and shaming. A waste, it is, I tell you, a waste, of the time and the energy you will need to till the ground, to plant, to tend, to reap and to sow.
Black, ebony crows, cowardly, sneaky squirrels and scavengers sit in the trees, contributing nothing, except hideous caws and chatter, while waiting to pick over the bounty of someone else’s harvest.
Do Not Be A Vulture.
Nor envious of your neighbor.
Instead, feel the earth beneath your fingernails. carry the water in bags on your shoulders, tend the gardens, treasure the seedlings, protect the developing plants as they reach up toward the sun.
And at the end of your days, give thanks, teach and prepare the next generation of farmers to likewise be vigilant, So that finally, at the age of bleep and bleep, you too, may pull off your gloves, tuck your garden hat into your boots, turn your face to the sun...and rest.
I am throwing away the 10X mirrors, the magnifying glasses, and the tweezers.
Welcome to the Wookie Museum.
Happy Birthday Me...and Han and Luke and Leia...
Thanks for all for the memories.
Even the hip huggers.
There, you see, there is my wish,
my wish for this birthday,
simply sweet and divine.
You Star Wars aficionados...
Star Trek fanatics have been heard.
I did some editing and now the Cafe Scene,
is the Cantina Scene....
and the Kling On...is appropriately and accurately spelled...Klingon.
Wednesday, October 14, 2015
Assignment: Write About Your Summer Vacation
I Am Wary About Fall
I am wary about the changing of the seasons, despite the new backpack and the aroma of new Crayola Markers, sharpened pencils and my new scarlet high top Chuck Taylors laced up past my ankles. I am wary of Fall, as it erupts at the end of a particularly tough nine months.
Unusually cool days in August. Trees brushing dead leaves off their shoulders, like dandruff before a healthy course of medicated shampoo. I identify with the birch trees in my yard, as I too, am ready to shed, to shake off, to itch and scratch the worries, the heartache and the sorrow.
But, there always is a But.
I am not ready for the barrenness of Old Man Winter. These naked and exposed nerve endings of mine are not ready for the deep freeze. The high dive into an iceberg.
Therefore, after a one man committee meeting, the final vote is in.
Bring on Fall.
Let in the light and the bright riot of color.
Give me please, that pure golden light, the light photographers seek in the twilight hour, so fleeting and so precious, you must hold your breath, wait and be patient, for it lasts only fifteen minutes at best.
The Mr. DeMille I Am Ready For My Close Up gilded light sprinkled liberally with golden dust, soft and hazy concealers.
Gentle sweetly burnished exteriors.
Mother Nature blushes... by artisan brushes...sprinkled with forgiveness.
There are not enough filters in my camera, nor forgiveness brushes in Photoshop, to eliminate the tracks of my years, etched into the features of my face. However, speaking of etchings, I had a golden moment of light, about one week ago. In the midst of redecorating, moving from Spring and Summer to Fall, I discovered a treasure trove long forgotten, yet deeply loved.
When my Mom died many years ago, I lost virtually everything, every memento of my childhood. To be true, I have only a scrapbook I made myself, at the age of 14, and the pictures are faded and blurry, much like my memories.
I did, however, receive a small blessing. A set of six dessert plates, a candelabra, and a large serving bowl.
Fostoria Glass. From the glass magicians in Fostoria, Ohio...the very same office where my Mom and Dad met. Met face to face, made a pledge of love, and held on as War separated them for four long years.
Love etched on glass over time.
I have it. I found it. The pieces of their love, their wedding presents, tucked in the corner of a cabinet. I pulled them out and tucked flowers in the stemware, the serving bowl, and put candles in the candelabra. Up on the mantle.
Come up I say. Come up and see my etchings. My exquisite etchings of a wedding long past, a love long lived, a couple now perished, and only their memories survive.
Is it possible anymore?
Long love that radiates around a couple like a halo of tenderness.
I saw it in full bloom at the dentist’s office the other day. Two senior somethings shuffling down the hall, hand in hand, one slightly less feeble than the other, but what caught my ear, what resonated in my heart, was the way he, glanced down and said in a soft and caressing voice, “ Take your time sweetheart. I’ve got you.” A vision of a love so deep and strong, I felt like an intruder on a moment so private and endearing, that I stepped back, leaving them their space of long long love.
It is such a rarity these days to find love that spans decades. A love that despite anything the world throws in its way, manages to survive.
Long long love.
Love minus cheating hearts, wandering eyes, roaming hands or endless recriminations. The kind of love that spans generations, stands proudly but not gaudily, as a beacon to young lovers everywhere, that yes, it can happen, it does happen and it is not a fairy tale ending.
For at the end of a long love, abides the deep reassuring faith that I, and only I, will walk with you, even as you falter, even if you fall. I, only I, will treasure you and see beyond the graying of your hair, the lockstep of your joints, the stammer in your speech. For what I will see, what will keep me focused in the days ahead, are the memories I keep in my mind and heart, where you and I will be forever young. Dancing cheek to cheek, amazed and overwhelmed in the maternity ward as a child enters our existence. Through days of plenty and years of need, I will see you only as the beauty you exude, the hand that I hold, late at night, deep in the darkest of days, whispering, crooning my name, reminding me that everything in this life, started and ended with us.
Long long love.
So therefore, let the seasons change. Let the sand drizzle through the hour glass. Let the world spin and the seasons blossom, for we are ready. Side by side, to need one thing and one thing only.
Then let the leaves fall where they may.
For we will walk along together and kick the leaves, warm in the sunshine, and be grateful that all we need, all we have ever needed is each other.
Tuesday, October 6, 2015
Babies live in their own reality. What they see is what is Here. What they no longer see is Gone.
Appear and Disappear.
And, oh so very frightening.
I am too small to witness her shadow in the kitchen, and too far away to hear her humming as she scrubs the dinner dishes in the sink.
I look at her, my eyes wide and shriek what I cannot say...
We play over and over again. Momma hides her face behind her hands. Now you see me, now you don’t. But I am here, she is teaching me. I am here. If I go, I will be back.
However, when we grow older, and a loved one disappears, what do we do then?
For what we cannot see, what we will never see again, will return, I promise. In a memory or a photo.
And once again the fear and the anxiety will abate, as Trust takes over and wills us to live...
With or without...our loved ones never ever leave us. The lessons we learn in childhood, are often our best friends. For there we learn, oh so quickly, that to hold onto what we see, what we can touch, is not the reality that sustains us.
The very presence of loved ones, is never lost to time immortal, as we have the power to sustain their memories deep within our trust, and to find them whenever we need a safe place to land.
I have missed all of you and have been away far too long. I promise that I will return much more often and with much more to say. This world is beginning to scare me a bit, and I think that we should all grab each other's hand and find shelter in the comfort of each other's kindness and good humor. Let us do that. Let us find a smile each and every day to sustain the hope that tomorrow will be a better day. You are the sights and sounds I may not see or hear, but believe most strongly, are with me, each and every day.
if I never see you again
if time runs short
if life runs out
if i have one minute left
if i have one last chance
in and out
the following words:
even if i never see you again©