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Showing posts from December, 2012

Free Writing - Highlights of a Bad Year

During even the roughest of years, there is somethings that shine. Grandma's 99th birthday!  Almost a year later and she's hanging on for the big one. Can't wait. Laughing with her and my father.  Old stories, I've heard 100 times and they never get old.  A text Christmas morning. One text, that is all I received, I sent probably 50.  Only two people sent to me first all day. Maybe it's me.  Good friends, lost loves. My fault as always.  Hospital bed, feeling sick, but a week away from the world was invigorating.  Unexpected people stepping up and expected people stepping down.  Seeing my kids the afternoon after a tragedy.  Tears held back, but needed to see them laughing and playing to heal.  Dancing til all hours with complete strangers. Laughing at the silliness of others taking their flirtations so seriously. Life is so simple when you don't try so hard to be someone you're not or someone you think the other person wants you to be.  Connecting with an …

New Year's Resolutions - Yeah Right

Each year, we all make a list. It's a dumb list of things we need to give up or have to try.  In writing the list, we make the efforts ahead of us much bigger than they have to be.  We make the simplest things seem insurmountable, because we tie them in with major changes or accomplishments.  I have spent most of 2000-2012 doing for others. Don't misinterpret this as me complaining about not having time or chances to do things for me.  That is not what I'm saying.  What I am saying is that, while it may appear I'm carefree and do what I want, the reality is, I find myself always being the one asked for a hand to help, an ear to listen or a shoulder to cry on.  When the roles are reversed, most times the needy are no longer there, because they have what they need and are too busy.

In 2013, I'm going to say no a lot more. I'm going to pick and choose those I am there for, with the understanding that caring is a two way street.  In the past twenty years, I have h…

Goodbye 2012 - A Look Back

2012 was in no uncertain terms, one of the worst for me personally.  Obviously, losing my mother, grandparents and a sister (sort of) was more difficult, but for me, just me, this was the worst year of my life.  I had to depend on others, I was in the hospital and way too many people I cared about died or had loved ones die. This year proved to me that getting older sucks.  I'm not going to dwell on that though. I'm going to look back on the good parts.

The best part of this year has been the time I've spent with family. I don't think I've ever been closer to my father, my brother or my grandmother.  I'm more distant with cousins and such than ever, but the core of who I am and why I'm the way I am is here, aside from my mother.  My mother would have been 70 this year and I cried a lot over her.  That being said, I laughed a lot more with family than I ever could have imagined.  I value them more than ever and they were there for me in so many ways when I n…

Thank Goodness That Is Over

December 26th.  For many of us, it's a day of relief.  Even returning to work in past years has felt OK.  I actually laid off the history lessons on Jesus and Santa this time around. I kept my disdain for this time of year to myself for the most part.  Of course I threw in the occasional barb, but I respected the day for the most part and left my random thoughts inside my brain and off this blog and my social media sites.

This year I'm up in Ithaca, like last, but so different from two years ago, when I stayed home and did my own thing.  I don't like this time of year and not for the completely misconstrued religious connotations the holidays takes on, but because of the forced love and appreciation.  As I looked at so many pictures on Facebook and Twitter it made me wonder how it happens. We live in a society where we must share our family time with the world? To brag and boast about the amount  of money we spent or the amount of food leftover, which most likely will end …

Free Writing - Take 15 (Christmas Edition)

December 25.  A white sheet blankets the street.  A perfect scene on the outside. Much different on the inside. A blah 24th, with a stomach ache and fatigue. Happy smiles upon arrival. A casual but festive dinner. Grandma showing her age. I worry.  She's only started looking her age in the past year.  What does 99 look like anyway.  Tree is lit with ornaments from a much happier past. The years go by and the family dwindles.  No replacements, no scampering about by children.  An average age in the mid-50's.  It all feels so weird.  A handful of present, I'm hoping of which none are mine.  A gift on order to, still hasn't been shipped.  It's been years since I've wanted anything for Christmas.  Years.  I need nothing more than to be surrounded by those who I care about and who return those feelings without question.  It's so different that last year and the year before.  Midnight texts to this one or that. Reaching out with words so kind, even if masked by s…

How Can Anyone Have Any Holiday Spirit This Year?

First night in nearly three weeks I've relaxed and watched a movie.  A shooting took place in the movie and it was a comedy.  A comedy about a true story.  It kind of made me sad, that despite it being very good, I was so numb to the one violent scene.  This week has made me numb to almost everything.  Tuesday night, I passed on a Christmas party.  I told myself it was for many reasons, but I think deep down, I don't want to celebrate this year.  Christmas isn't supposed to be about Jesus', but in reality it is about making kids happy.  Hard to feel festive this year.  Hard for many reasons.  Newtown, Connecticut is just one.  Hard to feel festive when I'm witnessing so much hatred in the world and not even the vast world I don't know, but the world I live in.  I've been called more names in the last few months than ever before in my life. Ironically, nowadays those who are touting their belief in the second amendment, don't believe in my first amendmen…

Why I Will Never Own A Gun

I could probably list two hundred reasons.  I could start with the fact that I am confident in my own abilities to defend myself and my property that I don't need one.  I could also state that I don't own anything that is valuable enough to shoot someone over.  I could state that while I am a cynic and a realist, I do not feel my life will be at risk any time soon.  I could tell of how my mother would write on my birthday party invitations "No toy guns, please."  I could tell of my cousin killing himself.  I could tell you about being jumped by some kids with a gun, only to luckily find out I knew them and it was a case of mistaken identity. I could tell of my friend getting his eye shot out by a ricocheting bullet while sitting in the middle of a lake fishing.  I could tell of my friend getting shot in the head (and thankfully living) by drug dealers.  Or I could simply tell you that I've been crying for five days because some kids and teachers I never knew were…

A Different Kind Of Day

Today I went to my job as I do almost every other school day.  I run an after school sports program and have been at the same school long enough to see kindergartners graduate high school.  In our society there are strict laws about what behaviors are acceptable.  I am very careful not to do anything that would ever be deemed inappropriate.  I limit all contact with the kids to high fives unless there is an injury.  Today, all that went out the window.  With the events that took place in Newtown, Connecticut still unfolding I felt myself tearing up as I walked through the front doors to the school. As my kids came in I found myself overwhelmed and holding it together took everything I had.  Obviously, none of the kids knew of the tragedy and their innocence was what got me.  That innocence which was ripped from so many earlier today.  As the class went on, I found myself making my way around the room and at some point and touching every one of them.  A handshake, a high five or a pat …

Serious Reflection: A Strange Few Days.

Funny how the people most concerned with their shoes, aren't willing to walk in other's.
Doing laundry is something I feel the need to complain about, but I actually find it quite relaxing.
I had the least amount of fun one night out that I have had in a long time.  Made me really question things.
I had the most amount of fun I've had in one night, two nights later.  Made me question things even more.
Funny who you miss, when you always see them, then you don't for a bit.
Funnier, is who you don't, under the same circumstances.
I've noticed that the more open I am about my feelings, the more people criticize me for them.
I think that most people believe those we know are generally intelligent, but it's a huge misconception.
I wrote a Facebook status about ignorance being bliss and truthfully, nobody who commented, got it.
Physical pain, regardless of location, makes day to day tasks almost impossible.
Shame manifests shame and truly makes me understand how …

Free Writing - Take 14

I had a plan.  A good nights sleep.  It was so very much needed.  Alas I was able to get an hour, maybe two.  I'm tired now at 4am, thanks to a second serving of melatonin.  My body is breaking down from this lack of rest.  Bad knees that have hampered me for 15 years are getting worse.  A hip problem and a lower leg problem have worsened.  My back hurts at times and my torn rotator cuff has started to ache.  People don't know the pain I'm in on a daily basis, because I don't talk about it often.  I walk like a zombie to the bathroom.  My knees don't bend at times.  The pain is excruciating.  So is life I guess.  I had a good class today.  Kids going crazy, but at times hilarious.  I wanted nothing of today, but to lay in bed. A rough couple of days.  Party like a rock star?  Well a rock star who is just a friend to just about everyone these days.  I wonder when I'll meet someone or connect with someone in a way that is more than the normal, high-bye, you'r…

Dreams of Absurdity

Flying fish everywhere.  Not the kind that leave the water gracefully, landing back in their habitat with grace. Not the Alaskan salmon jumping upstream, dodging the eager claws of a Grizzly.  No these fish fly, with wings feverishly flapping like the hummingbird.  They pass me by as I trek down a snowy hill.  Footprints left in the soft snow.  I slip and fall. I end up in a chair, an editor for World Ttraveler invited me in.  Is this even a real magazine?  I'm escorted into a room, where a woman sits.  She looks like Alanis Morissette with hair cascading down her shoulders. She moves much faster than a normal woman, much like someone in a constant state of fast forwards.  The room is bright and she asks me how I enjoyed Rome?  The Coliseum is present in a photo framed above her.  I tell her tales of gladiator fights and nighttime excursions to Venice.  The fish reappear, but she is oblivious. The fish are there to enhance my story.  I tell of Venice and the sharks that live under…

Free Writing - Take 13

Thoughts racing as I lay in bed.  We take for granted we'll always see that person again. We take our friends, family, and every day wonders for granted but worry about such silliness as how others wish us a happy holidays. Today someone wished me a Merry Christmas and I thanked them and returned the well wishes.  I then pointed out to them that I see them about two times a week and it's three weeks away.  They nodded and said "you never know."  You don't.  I smiled at someone today.  She smiled back.  I didn't want to be rude to the person I was with, so I didn't proceed with anything else.  She smiled again. Ran her fingers through her hair.  My friend left and she ignored me.  I find this behavior strange.  I'm not good at The Game.  I don't like playing games when it comes to emotions.  I walked home, looking around.  Quiet Tuesday night. I felt fatigued.  A possible cold coming on or my body run down from a serious party weekend?  Sniffles.  …

My Weird Food Stuff

I need something to clear my head right now.  This is the best thing I could come up with.  Just some food related things that I've noticed about myself recently. I consider myself a bit of a foodie.  I grew up in a house where restaurant level meals we're a norm.  To be honest, to say you could eat as well at a restaurant is actually an insult to my mother (and father), being that I've never had anything in a restaurant that my mother couldn't make better, with maybe one exception; the porterhouse steak at Peter Luger's.  Some call it being a foodie, others call it food snobbery.  As many know, I'm critical on most subjects, but food is probably the one thing I have the most issues with.  That being said here are some weird things I've noticed recently.

I absolutely hate pot roast.  Cooking a shitty, tough piece of meat for nine hours, doesn't make it good, it only makes it a shitty, tender piece of meat.  I'm pretty much opposed to all stews, with…