These are the thoughts of a Texas transplant in West Michigan who makes his living as a newspaper reporter by evening, and a struggling novelist by day.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

circle of life

at the office tonight and over the past few nights there's been a discussion about the best disney movies.

i don't participate much in the conversation since i'm not a big fan of cartoon movies. however, many names popped up, including "the lion king." there's been a commercial on tv announcing the version of the movie on stage. dan said it was better than the movie.

mark chirped in some of his faves and so did melanie. most of the movies i've not seen.

however, that got me to thinking about come cartoons i used to watch as a kid. actually linda is the one who mentioned them. tom and jerry is one of them.

all of a sudden emma grace, who's going to be 3 in a few weeks, began watching tom and jerry. she watched the movie with rena and ricky and is now hooked on the cartoons that come out on boomerang or noggin.

wednesday when linda called, i could hear the familiar sounds and music that accompany the long-playing cartoons. i could picture emma sitting in front of the tube watching the cat chasing the mouse and inevitably not cathing him.

linda thought it weird how now her kid is watching cartoons she watched when he was a kid. so she's says to me, "it's the circle of life, i guess."

some things just come around again and again. whether it be cartoons or movies or music. some of it is golden and won't get old any time soon.

keep watching emma. you'll learn so much.

Monday, March 02, 2009

sunny and cold

winter's winding down or so it seems. we'vegot about 19 days of official winter left. of course it means nothing since before winter even started we'd had dozens and dozens of inches of snow. so who knows.

i'll say this for this winter. we didn't have the long, long overcast winter days we had last year. from mid-january to mid-february 2008, we had no sunlight. this winter's been different. i've enjoyed the sun.

the only problem is that it's damnably cold. the sun's out and the snow's pretty much gone and yes it loks deary with the vegetation brown and withered. but the sun's out.

however, you step outside and are immediately assaulted by the chill in the air. it's deceptive cold as i call it.

yesterday i had quite a walking excursion and felt the wind tearing at my face as i walked. i didn't wear a scarf because of a turtle neck i wore, and i should have because it was biting.

and the whole shade/sun thing also came into play. i told dawn i could put a lawn chair on the front porch and get some rays saturday noon. but step beyond that into the driveway and the temp. drops and it's quite uncomfortable.

there's a warm up this week and i'm looking forward to it. right now milwaukee is getting pounded by snow (12 inches so far), all lake effect. i really don't want any of that anymore. and i know it's michigan and march, so one never knows. i'm hoping that as march came in like a lamb it goes down gently into that good winter and not end like a lion, as the old saying goes.

Sunday, March 01, 2009

final words

yes, i know it's been awhile and several people have told me to get my ass in gear here.. i've neglected this for a month. how terrible of me. and so it continues.

a few days ago i was chatting with linda about a variety of things and the subject went back to our dad. we talk about pop every once in awhile, but this time we were got into it, from saying how none of us (siblings) have the same even temperament like he had and other stuff.

somehow or other we got to talking about the days right before he died and how he was bed-ridden and never opened his eyes anymore. it was sunday and many of the women were around the bed praying a rosary.

even though dawn says she told me this, i don't remember it. linda said he was mouthing the words to the rosary as they prayed. nothing clear or anything, but he was definitely hearing what was going on around him.

then right in the middle of it, he says to my mom in a clear voice, "i love you." those were the last words my dad spoke, even though he didn't die for another three days.

how appropriate and how touching that he'd say that. it's a testament ot how much he loved my mom and that even during that time, he was thinking of her and their love. it's a beautiful thing.

and it got me to thinking that he could hear during that time. i began to feel guilty then. i'd talk to him and tell him things would be ok after he was gone. and that it was ok to go. i'm sure the hospice nurses said he could hear, but in the stress of the moment. i can't remember now.

and so i started thinking a couple of days ago that how shitty it was of me to say that to him. he could hear me. i started thinking about what he was thinking and how badly i wanted to have conversed more with him. (i still feel i didn't get a chance to say as much as i wanted to, even though we arrived on time and i told him i loved him and we did talk some on that friday night.)

i've been reassured that it was ok to say those things to ease him into the next world, to let him know that all would be well with his family when he was gone. and so i'm fine with it. i'm not going to beat myself up for it..

still, it's heard to imagine and believe my dad's dead. even now while i type this, there's a part of me that is thinking i'd like to call home and talk to him. then it all focuses.

i sure do miss my old man. and that's why life's too short to be squabbling, arguing, hurting others, be pitiful or some other negative state of mind thing. you're here one day and gone the next, or someone you love is gone. and even though it's the cycle of life, it still hurts like crazy.