Monday, July 9, 2012

The View on the Way DOWN

The View on the Way Down
There's an arc while being a stand up comedian, where you have a few years of riding the love wave. You get really great jobs and work the best rooms. You are hilarious. When I worked with George Lopez in San Diego, I was put up in this high rise building where most of the walls were glass and you could see the city from most directions. It was unreal. There were so many cool jobs like this one that come to mind. Another booking, right on the water in San Diego. Working with Ellen, also in San Diego and staying at the Marriott, having lunch and laughing and walking around the mall. Doing the Funniest Mom in America at the Laugh Factory in New York and looking out of my 10th floor room at Times Square. The New York city lights sparkling in the night as if they are saying, "We love you! We do!" Working at Catch A Rising Star in Vegas and walking in to the hotel and seeing my giant face on a screen at the check in desk. Man I'm great. Every club would be really kind to the comics and supportive. They would say, "Can I get you anything? Food? A drink? Anything?" Then at the end of the week, yes, I said week. That's how it used to be. Anyway, they would PAY you and then say you were funny and usually re-book you right there in their pretty business office. And then you would put on your bejeweled crown and ride your pony home. (I made up that last part) There was also a really great community of comics, really, really funny comics, and I was always happy to see them. We supported one another and helped each other and if someone needed something, we jumped on it. We respected each other. We laughed so, so hard in the back of comedy clubs and in parking lots. That didn't mean we thought every person was funny, but we made a point to know them as people, not just comics. We knew their wives and husbands and kids and their struggles. Because we knew them as people first, when they went on stage, we hoped for something great to ease their real life shit. I've known some brilliant people who have for whatever reason, slipped through the cracks and have been dismissed from the thing they love, and the thing that feeds their families and feeds their heart. I'm not sure how it happens, but it does. All the time. The journey on the way down is like that ride at the Stratosphere that just drops you 5 thousand feet, in a violent jolt as you plummet to the concrete? It finally stops and you're pretty sure you shit in your pants? It's like that. One day you look around, as the servers are dropping off hot wings to intoxicated customers, right next to the cut out piece of carpet that is the 'stage' area, and you think, "So this is the view on the way down." You need 30 dollars, so you show up to make the magic at a place called, 'Willies Wild and Whack Wings'. Or, 'Teddy's Taco Town', and you have to get your head in the 'place' where you have to lay this fucking bullshit on the ground, that's right mother fuckers! Set your taco DOWN. The room is dark, it's actually dank. Musty, depressed people drinking alone littered around in the darkness as they listen to Journey, 'Don't Stop Believing'. The anorexic bartender in a tube top pops over and says, "What can I get you 'hon'." In that crystal meth drawl. I say, "I'm one of the comics performing this evening?" Which is another way of saying, "May I have a free coke?" She looks at me like I broke her crack pipe, lifts her arms in a I don't give two shits attitude, and says, "Yeah. Okay?" Shaking her head in irritation at my implication that I am special. She doesn't charge me for the coke and I tip her 5 dollars because my need to be liked, especially by drug addicts, is more important than my desperate financial situation. The stage in this place was actually a clearing, where they removed tables, and now it's a space where the comedians stand, and talk, as no one listens because comedy is stupid and we come here for the tacos and the meth and someone got shot right in that stage area and we can't shake the memory, mainly because there is still blood splattered on the giant speaker next to you. The only thing that made it even better was the fact that there was a pinball machine right next to the performance space. So I tell a joke. Ding, ding, ding. I tell another and begin the hilarious punchline. Ding, ding, dong. Cha-ching! I look over, they guy is really focused on getting the most out of his quarter. Ding. ding. Joke. Ding. Half a joke. Ding, dong. I can hear voices coming out of the darkness as they ignore me and speak to one another as if I'm invisible, "Billy Junior got out of the hospital this morning and he is already drunk tonight." Another joke. Ding-a-ling. Finally! My big closer! And.... I'm off. Another moment of comedic magic in the box. I am given my 30 dollars and I do the math, after tipping Misty the bartender, I have made 5 dollars and have a new friend. I guess if I had to be honest, I've angered a few people. Sometimes I stand my ground to aggressively and in the process, pissed a few people off. But I've tried to stay out of the line of fire between the clubs and comics. I've tried to be compassionate about what people are going through and how that affects their words and actions, and then try not to take it personally. I know people's motives are not always truthful. It's a really tough business and people try to get what they can from someone else, and if you don't have anything they need, that's when you get on the ride that drops you on your ass. That is not ALL people in the comedy business, but some. I miss the old days. I miss the love and laughter. I miss the little community of funny people that I would watch perform and think, "He is going to be HUGE." Then 5 years later I see that same guy in line at the fucking ride and I wonder what happened. At some point I'll need 30 dollars again and I'll go through the same magical routine. I'll walk in to 'Debbie's Donut Hole' and say, "I am one of the comics performing this evening." A 15 year old girl will blankly stare at me, cock her head sideways, and yell, "Debbaaay!" I'll sit at the counter and write out my jokes, as the multi colored sprinkles from my mother fucking FREE donut will fall on 20 years of jokes. None of which are appropriate for this venue. I could do this one. I'll just change taco to donut. Yes. I'm brilliant.

Monday, April 25, 2011

I'm the Sheep that Raised My Kids

How do you forgive yourself? I mean, after you go through the steps of self forgiveness? Pray about it, ‘let it go’, know that you did the best you could, ask for forgiveness, try to be a better person…. yada, yada, yada. The thing for me about forgiving myself is that most days, I do feel that I have forgiven myself. But then there are the other days.
You can fuck over every person in the world and find a way to forgive yourself. But if you did the wrong thing as a parent, it’s something that is so, so hard to let go of. And possibly, we are not suppose to let go of it. It may be the thing that keeps us doing the right thing because of the memory of doing the wrong thing.
To add to the complication of the wreckage that is my life, I have to really be careful not to live in the ‘I’m a bad parent’ world too much because the kids will feed on that. They will allow me to carry their mistakes by saying that they make them because of the horror that was their childhood. ‘I am the way I am because of the way you raised me’. If I had a nickel.
There was some bad stuff. Bad choices, bad memories, crazy, insane, drunken chunks of time. Bad, bad stuff. I guess what makes it hard to forget is that the kids remind me about it, usually, during a disagreement. So it’s hard to bury it when the kids are holding shovels.
Lately, it’s all just too much. On one hand I feel guilt. On the other hand I feel, honestly, like I don’t give a shit. I feel like, okay, I was a bad mother. Give me the tattoo, or the final grade, and let’s just say it is what it is so I can stop torturing myself. It’s all true. I did all those things. I’ve done what I can to make it right. The thing is that when you are the one that was wrong it’s not up to you when the people on the other end decide to put down the shovel. It’s up to them. And until they do, I feel like I can’t shake this feeling. And it’s not as if they don’t have the right to feel what they feel. They do. But am I allowed to bail out of the feelings without permission? To say, okay, hang on to that as long as you need to, but I have shit to do and naps to take? I can’t spend the rest of my life feeling like a failure. I have to move on.
If I move on and say your stuff is yours, that may be the thing that makes some of the insanity stop. You know, when you have to claim your own choices, you try and curb it. When you say, ‘I do this shit because of my parents’, it’s easy to keep doing it. But when you have to say, ‘I did this because I made this choice and have no one to blame but myself’, carrying the weight of your actions makes you want to stop making those choices. But I’m thinking that the kids aren’t going to come to that until I stop feeding in to the ‘my childhood was bad’ routine. Until the day that I say, ‘Yeah. My childhood sucked too. Everyone’s did.’
I myself did not grow up on a fairy boat. And still, I have gotten a thing or two done in my life. I am a published author and I can’t even fucking spell. So I’m going to pull myself up, and you pull yourself up, and this is how the day will look. Some days will be great. Some days will suck. I will make more mistakes and so will you. But we can wake up everyday and do the best we can.
I still don’t think I have figured out how to forgive myself. The plan is that I will start with a nap, and then go from there. When we get married they have that line where the priest says, ‘In good times and in bad times, in sickness and in health’. They say that because marriage is a forever concept. It’s a shame we don’t get that deal as parents. All we know as parents is that the nurse hands you the baby and she may as well say, “Don’t fuck this up.” Well, I fucked it up. So where do we go from here? I have no idea. But I will figure something out when I wake up.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Swear on mom

My mother in law passed away about fifteen years ago. All my life I have heard people say, 'Swear to god'. Or, 'Swear on the bible'. If you swear on God or the bible, it is suppose to mean that even the most habitual liar would crumble. Jesus has the power to make the roof fall in on your head and kill you for the lie. You could say to someone, "Are you sure he is telling the truth?" "He swore on the bible." Ah. End of story.
My husband and his family have a whole different twist to forcing the truth out of a person. Swear on mom.
In my husbands family you do not lie if you are swearing on mom. You just don't do it.
It's usually my husbands sister Cheryl. Everyone will be arguing back and forth and then Cheryl's voice rises above the crowd and she brings the hammer down, "Swear on mom!"
The room becomes abruptly quiet. You can hear a pin drop. The wind begins to blow and the sky turns black. Sometimes, you can hear scary ghost noises in the background. The lights flicker. She puts her hands on her hips and stares in to the accused's eyes. "Swear on mom." He lowers his head and contemplates his choices. Either, tell the truth and remind people that you are an idiot. Or, swear on mom. The pressure of telling the truth is so intense if you decide to swear on mom, you get confused and begin confessing every lie you've ever told.
Cheryl takes a step toward the hostage and asks again. This time in a firm, confident voice. "Swear. On. Mom."
The big fat liar does not lift his head but he does lift his eyes. After a deafening silence he says, "I colored my hair." And the crowd goes crazy. Swear on mom worked again. And is he serious? Did he really think no one would notice that he looks like Elton John?
I love my sister in law Cheryl. She is one of my top two 'go to' people to get something done. But there are people who lie, and there are people that tell the truth no matter what. They say, "Hey! It's the truth!" Cheryl tells the truth. She will look at someone and say, "Are you serious with that shirt? Did you just get off the Love Boat?" She's like an insult comic but she's not on stage, she's in her kitchen. But unlike an insult comic she will actually wait for an answer. "Hello! Did you play shuffle board with Captain Stubbing and Julie? Was Gopher there?"
I didn't have the swear on mom deal in my family. We did the traditional, 'If you tell a lie Jesus will know and you will burn in hell for eternity'. So we lied all the time. I mean, define hell? And when is that going to happen if it actually happens? I think I'll stick with my story.
I grew up in constant threat of the horrifying things Jesus was going to do to me if I sinned. If you ever question if something is a sin, if it's awesome and fun, it's a sin. Then at a young age I figured something out. I could go to confession and confess all those sins and the slate would be wiped clean. So why not live my life like hell on wheels? Then, right before I pass away I will get everything forgiven and go to heaven with the suckers that didn't put two and two together with the clean slate deal. This is actually how I currently live.
Some people start out with the truth and then the jazz the story up to such a level that it becomes a lie. They add some really gross descriptions and say someone was screaming, "Help me! Tell my children I love them!" While they twirled around in a parking lot engulfed in flames. Really? You saw that? Then they continue to add, "Then the flame from her dress lit a truck on fire and it exploded. There were three people in the truck and a cat." Wow. What actually happened was there was a garbage can in front of the store that was smoking and an employee walked out and dumped a bucket of water on it.
Then there is the omitting of the truth. I have mastered this. What I like to do when someone asks me something I don't want to answer is say, "Excuse me? I didn't hear you." This gives me time to think while they ask again.
One of the biggest lies I tell is about food. Me and my daughters go to expensive restaurants and then when my cell phone rings, and it's my husband, I say we are at McDonald's. We all know to say this. He says, "I don't know how you guys can stand to eat at McDonald's so much." I say, "Excuse me? I didn't hear you."
We all lie about one thing or another. Does my ass look fat? Do you like my new hair color? Do I look old? Did you try to poison me? All day long.
I will do anything to avoid hurting someones feelings, even if I have to lie. I will lie to say something to someone that is not true so they will be happy. If I get a grouchy checker in the grocery store, I will tell her how beautiful she is. Even if she looks like Shrek.
I have sworn on the bible, swore to God, pinky promised, swore on mom. All those times I was telling the truth. Mostly. Okay, sometimes. Whatever, rarely.
I tell the truth when it matters. To me. And only if I am guaranteed that no conflict will come from my confession. I will tell the truth when it is not going to make me look bad. I will be singing a song and if I don't know the words to part of the song, I will pretend I'm busy during that part. Or I'll yawn or cough. As if I'm saying, "I know the words, it's just that I'm yawning right now."
So yeah. Honesty is the foundation that I've built my life on. Honesty and dirt. Mainly dirt.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

I am a huge fan

When going to a job as a corporate employee, just know, that you will be swimming in oceans of cheese. They have corporate 'slogans' and sayings that they will announce the first day you show up. At first, you look at these corporate people and notice they have glassy eyes and corporate wet brain. It's something all corporate people have. They look in to your eyes, short of saying, "Pretend that I don't sound like a complete fucking idiot right now." But to work at the job, you must swim, in the corporate cheese.
At my old job there were billions of gallons of cheese. It was constant. I worked in a grocery store where the big bosses thought they were rock stars. When in reality, they were just old, fat, bald headed, fucks. The grocery store was their life. It was their world. When in reality, they were making someone else a shit load of money. The big bosses would come in with gel in their hair and tell the store boss, with gel in his hair, that we needed to be reminded constantly about the slogans and sayings. If we missed one of the slogans, we would have to say the slogan over the intercom to pump up the other employees. Things like, "If you shuffle your feet, you may miss a greet!" Even typing that made me throw up in my mouth a little.
It's corporate work. There are people in corporate offices, some of them, women, with sensible, pressed outfits and half inch black pumps and they have two looks. Angry and angry. Then there are the corporate men. They also have two looks, the 'I'm fucking the girl in the deli' look. And the 'Jesus is my lord and savior' look. BTW, these two looks are on the same man. When angry and Jesus merge, this is where the ideas come from. Huge corporate buildings filled with people with glassy eyes and starched shirts. They are robots. They back stroke through the cheese and think of ways to make the cheese 'cheesier'. They think of ideas, because they are the idea people, to strip the employee's of their remaining dignity. 'What if we say that if they miss a greet that they will have to wear something like a party hat, but instead of it being a party hat, it could be a enormous engorged penis, standing straight up on the top of their heads? Yes. Someone send a fax."
The one thing for sure is that even with all the above, there is no shame in swimming in the cheese to buy cheese. But the moment the slogans begin to make sense, get out. That doesn't mean the next place you go there won't be more cheese to swim in, but possibly a better cheese. Like mozzarella, or feta. You'll be floating in your new cheese and you'll look up and there will be a new group of fat, fuck, wet brain bosses and you'll realize in corporate life, there is no escape.
There are rules in life, at home, at work. We are suppose to follow these rules. But when you leave your job, your anus shouldn't hurt. Unless your job involves some sort of study on anus pain. (I wonder what that pays?)
I am currently swimming in Hollywood cheese. The thing that sucks about Hollywood cheese is the leaders of the cheese smile and talk real kind. They also have slogans like, "I love your work, really." Or, "I am a huge fan." Then they do a line of coke off their Coach wallet. The softness in their voice, before the coke, makes you really think, "Wow. This could be really great!" They smile at you with their insane white teeth and then they begin to swirl their head around, "Who do I have to fuck to get a drink around here!" Then, as you're driving home without any warning, your anus begins to hurt.
I swam in the corporate cheese for entirely too long so now my tolerance for the Hollywood cheese is nonexistent. I am almost 50 and the best I can do is float on a hardened cheese like Velveeta.
If you are young, or even younger, if there is something you want to do in your life, do it. No matter what bullshit people tell you, there is a REAL window in life. The window where you make something happen or you don't. When you hear of people who did great things when they were 50 or 60, it's like five people. I'm not even kidding. Five fucking people succeeded at some great thing, and then they dropped dead. I waited and it may turn out to be one of my biggest regrets. We all say, oh, there's time, I'll work on it tomorrow, I'll get to it. I promise you that TOMORROW you will wake up and be 50 and you will know you missed the window. You not only missed the window, there is no window and there is a giant swamp cooler shoved in there as you fan yourself with a piece of paper, saying, "Sweet baby Jesus! It's a hot one today!"
I believe in people. I believe people can do great things. But to be great, you have to actually DO something great. You have to do it. Talking about it doesn't make it happen. I get messages or emails from people who say they're going to write a book. They tell me about the book and you know what I say? "I love your work, really. I'm a fan." And I'm not even a cheese leader! This is a sad world.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Matthew Austin Lennon

When you had a baby, did you really have any idea what you were doing? It's sort of a thing you have to jump in to and learn as you go.
I had my first baby when I had just turned 18 so let's just say, I had a lot of shit figured out. I read a pamphlet in the doctors office and it was filled with helpful 'mommy tips'. I read it, didn't even take the pamphlet with me, just read it in the office. I say that because if I would have at least taken the literature with me I could have referred to it when I ran in to a situation.
The first situation came when I got my baby home to my parents house. What do you do with the baby? So, I showed her around the house, "This is the living room. This is the kitchen. Out that window there is a cow."
When I had my first daughter, my baby's daddy's mom, Nana, said that if I pulled the bottle straight out of her mouth and she made that suction noise, that could collapse her soft spot and suck it right in to her head. So the proper way was to lean the bottle out sideways until she stopped sucking the bottle. The fact is, I never believed that to be true because if it were, where are the people that this happened to? I have never seen a person with the top of their heads completely dented in like a meteor crater. I have never said to someone, "What happened to the top of your head? Oh. Collapsed soft spot. Your mom didn't know? So sad."
So if me and Nana were having a disagreement about something and she would be saying something to me that I didn't like, while I'm feeding my baby her bottle, I would look right at her and intentionally pull the bottle straight out of the baby's mouth. It would make this loud 'THUP'. Nana would immediately react, "Oh my god! No! The soft spot!! You could kill the baby!" For the record, I loved Nana. She was amazing to me and my daughters and I think we may have had a total of two disagreements in the many years we knew one another. There may have been more, but everyone knows that you don't argue with Nana. I think that is a worldwide 'Nana' deal. To argue with a Nana is a loose, loose. 'Grandma', you may get away with some shit. 'Nana'? You'll start confessing shit from six years ago.
These days young parents are just crazy. My oldest daughter, the one that I used for the soft spot bit with Nana, she is going to have a baby in the next week or so. (Her head is completely round, by the way.) She's putting the headset on the belly with music for the unborn baby. Reading to the belly. Singing to the belly. Are you kidding with me? You are going to be a parent for the rest of your life! Take this time to just let the belly do it's own thing.
The hospital room where my grandson will be born is called a 'family room'. That means that your entire family can come and have the baby with you. Beds, accommodations, I think they may serve drinks or opiates. And this is for however many people you want? When I had my daughters, I was in a delivery room that the hospital also used to deliver office supplies. I'm having a baby and they are rolling boxes up a loading dock and chatting, "Hey Bob! Did you ever get that tranny replaced? Can you sign for this?" The doctor puts down the jaws of life he's using to pull the baby out with. He's signing the paper, "I just don't know if it's worth it to put a new one in that old truck." Hey! Medicine man! Focus!
My daughter has the best health insurance in the country. I was, there is no other way to say it, a welfare mom. When you have a baby on the state money, they cut out all the frills. Like water. And air. They deliver the baby, spray the baby off, hand it to you and say, "You are free to go. Good luck with that." They may cut the cord, they may not. You may be able to pull the baby around Wal Mart by their cord for as long as need be. I mean, yeah I get it. I actually didn't expect more. But now that I see how it is when normal people have a baby, wow! It really is a beautiful day! I'll have a sandwich and an Ambien!
What I find is that every single parent has some sort of terrifying tip for you. "Make sure you burp her or the gass will build up and her liver could explode. That happened to a friends baby."
Everyone has something. Too many blankets may kill the baby. Not enough blankets, bye-bye baby. Cold formula has bacteria. Sianara' baby. Hot formula? You can have more children. Holding the baby wrong could kill the baby. The fabric of the babies clothing could be a silent killer. Dog hair, silent killer. Lead base paint? It could not only kill the baby, it could kill every single person in the house and possibly a couple of neighbors. Also, a silent killer. Adios' bambino. And why? It's because of that total fucking I don't give a shit attitude that parents have. (That last line was a joke and I wish I didn't have to include this information but sometimes people take me seriously and I have no idea how to process that in my brain.)
This is what I know for sure. If the baby is crying, pick up the baby. I know that you can hug and kiss a baby as much as you want. They are helpless to stop you. Do it now because when they are about seven, that crap will stop especially with little boys. Hugs and kisses interfere with their activities. When you tell them you love them and they are only one week old, they know what that means. When a small baby smiles at you, thats the first way they express that they love you. When they spit up on your clothes, your couch, your bed, whatever. It's what they do. When they do not want you to sleep, you are not going to sleep. They come in to the world and it is their world. As it should be. The best case scenario is that when a baby gets here, he or she has a circle of people waiting for them and already loving them before they even get here. Isn't it grand to be a baby? Having a baby around just makes everything better. It's like having a flat screen TV or an IPAD. I am very excited to meet my grandson Matthew Austin Lennon. The thing is that it is hard to be a parent and we all do the best we can. It's like the old saying about parenting. "Don't let the time do you. You do the time."

Thursday, December 16, 2010


This is the conversation I just heard from the neighbor children in reference to the Christmas lights on the houses.
Sister, about 5 years old. "Oh, look! The entire community is all lit up!"
Brother, about 6 years old. "It's not called a community. It's called a neighborhood."
Sister, "So what."
Brother, "Remember! We did this last year and it really works!"
Then the brother, for whatever reason looks up at the lights on his house, cups his hands over his mouth and says, "Echo! Echo! Echo!"
Sister does the same thing, "Echo! Echo! Echo!"
Remember being little and waiting for Christmas and how it was the most exciting thing ever! My parents had this Ceramic Nativity scene. It was small. But the thing that made it an insane mystery was that the little wooden crib was empty. Then on Christmas morning, the baby Jesus would appear laying in the crib! You know, because Jesus wasn't born until Christmas morning? I remember coming around the corner and there was Jesus! And where there was Jesus, there was presents!
On my research for this investigative journalistic piece of work, I asked my mom, "Where did you guys keep the ceramic baby Jesus until Christmas morning?" After about 15 minutes of mumbling, "It seems like we didn't have a very good system on that. We put Jesus in different spots. Some years, we would have to look for him because we couldn't remember where we put him."
At some point, the baby Jesus's head was busted off because of what my parents called our 'rough-housing'. Several ceramic icons were injured, but not to the level of the baby Jesus. The head was glued back on but the baby Jesus just didn't look right.
I remember another Christmas where we were doing the Christmas pageant. You know, with all the biblical celebrities. Mary, Joesph, the wise men, Jesus. I was so excited about my part. It wasn't a speaking part. And if my memory serves me, it was the only non speaking part, but it was a very powerful moment and I was going to deliver it with such depth that the audience would gasp at the emotion I brought to the character. I believe the actual character was written on the script as 'Walking Child'. I had practiced ahead of time for weeks. All I had to do was carry a 'challis', that had pretend wine in it, down the center isle of the church and set it on the alter. Then walk back. That was my part. That was what I practiced. I still have no clue what part the glass of Chard had to do with the birth of Jesus but I was just honored to be involved.
Right before I am going to rock their world, my nose begins to bleed. Then I faint. The Priest, an amazing man, Fr. Gene was looking over me fanning me with something. Turns out I didn't have an understudy for that role. They grab some kid wearing a vest and shiny black shoes out of the audience and say, "Take this and set it on the alter." The rage made my nose bleed more that this fucking amateur random kid was stealing, let's face it. The role of a lifetime. It was complete bullshit. Not just anyone could be 'Walking Child'. It was a role not unlike that of Meryl Streep in Sofie's Choice except we were not in Germany and there was less bombing in the background.
The main thing I remember about Christmas when I was a kid was, well, the utter disappointment. Sorry mom and dad! But the only time you really got in the game was the year you bought us bikes? And the other year that you got the boys chemistry sets. One year I got an easy bake oven. That was the year I realized that nothing in my life was going to work out. The easy bake oven came with ONE cake mix. And they didn't sell them. So you bake one little cake? It's over. The toy is not only no longer fun, there is no function for it. I tried to make it in to a Barbie house, which is what I actually wanted. I would pretend it was their hotel. I'd lay them on the racks. Then take them off the racks. That was it. I took the actual rack out and then the Barbies could sit in there like they were on a bus trip or something. You know it takes three minutes to eat your little cake the size of a bisket, then you realize you were completely screwed by Fisher Price. I spent the day mumbling, "Bullshit." My brothers thought this was hysterical, "Hey, Dina! When will the cake be ready!" Me, "Fuck off." I was ten.
But what was the real idea of Christmas? That little baby Jesus. In the manger. Surrounded by the wise men, one of which had an arm broken off and the sheep with one ear. With Mary and Joesph in all their glory looking down at the baby Jesus. And the baby Jesus looking at them. With white glue on his throat and his head cocked to one side. That's what it's all about. The birth of Jesus at a Marriott in Dubai. I haven't read the bible in a while so I could be improvising that last part. But it's the traditions that create the love at Christmas. For me, it was that Nativity scene. For my kids, it's the Coach purse. We all have something that makes the holiday magic. For some kids, it's standing in the front yard and saying, "Echo! Echo! Echo!" I hope they heard some sort of echo. I wonder if when they grow up they will take their children out to the front yard and teach them to echo. I think it's a really nice idea:)

Sunday, September 26, 2010

The people on the shore line

We are drowning. I am drowning with you. To show you how much I love you. I love you so much I will gasp for air with you. Because that's how much I love you.But there are others... on the shore line. Waiting for me to get their lunch. A nine year old little boy that wants to ride bikes and laugh. He can eat a whole pizza by himself but he likes to share with me. He smiles.I can feel your hand slipping, away, and away. My heart is in a million pieces. I think it may be selfish to save myself. You may think I didn't love you. I can feel your finger tip and the water moving us further apart. We are suffocating. Together. Because that's how much I love you. Do I love you so much that if you continued to fall, I would fall too?Little boys always want the bike to go faster. Faster and faster. I tell him to be careful. He ignores me smiling. I kiss him. I love him too.I am drowning. For me to come up and out of the water, I have to let you go. I have to let go of your sweet hand. I need a breath. One big breath. I can see the sun shining on the top of the water and it calls me.The people on the shore call me. They want ice cream because that's a thing that people want. Nothing more. Nothing less. It's a simple choice. Chocolate.I just want you to know that drowning with you serves no point. It won't fix it. It won't fix you.So I will ride the bike and laugh and look at the water and waves and turn away. Because that's what we do after we almost drown.... turn away. And with that we have saved ourselves. But wow, I love you. I really, really love you. I'm sorry.