Category Archives: etc.

From One Life to Another

WalkAway

I started prepping the Iowan early. “We’ll hug him, then walk away.”

Mr. Boudreaux’s dad had cried at the end of his high school graduation, I mean really cried. This was after the Iowan spent parts of the evening trying to get me to leave early. “You can’t be interested in hearing all of this,” he said.

Then, the 90 seniors climbed the stage steps for last pictures. Our only child Mr. B. was bunched in back with his boy pack, arms thrown over shoulders. It was beautiful and wrenching. While taking photos, I noticed his dad’s tears. “This is the very last time they will ever do this. It just hit me.”

The Iowan was losing it. He is tall and hard to miss. Internal mother alarms shrieked: Warning, teenager humiliation. I took the Iowan’s hand and joined the slow line to the exit. For the last time, we read Mr. B.’s senior quote, painted on the wall just outside the gym. “When things get too heavy, just call me helium, the lightest known gas to man.” Jimi Hendrix.

Then, too fast, it was college move-in day. We got up at O-dark-30 and headed south. Several hours later, we were moving Mr. B. into the dorm. The roommates put clothes away while parents sweated and wrestled gear. The helpful RA from North Carolina kept referring to me as “Miss Alabama.” A graduate student dropped by to check laptop connections. He told us the weather was terrible during his first move-in day and his parents got into a huge fight so he couldn’t wait for them to leave.

When we couldn’t think of anything else to do, we took the boys to dinner. Then we dropped them off, back at the dorm.

It was time. I hugged Mr. B. tight and whispered, “Fly high, free bird,” my version of a goodbye joke. Dad and son hugged, shook hands and exchanged I love you’s. The Iowan and I turned and retreated, crisply. We were holding it together. All business.

A few heartbeats later, I looked back. Mr. B. had turned around and was watching us walk away, a little smile on his face. His eyes were shiny with tears.

I’m Back

MGS reached out like a mensch and asked me back. I’m not sure my own flesh & blood would’ve invited me back after two years of silence, but that’s what always made Clusterflock special, wasn’t it?

Here’s to you survivors, who wouldn’t give up on this beautiful experiment. Cheers!

Omega Institute In Your Pants, 2013 edition

It’s that magical time, folks! Once again, as in 2010, my woodland friend Susan has forwarded the In Your Pants edition of the Rhinebeck, NY, Omega Center’s course catalog.

Sign up early, if you want a spot; these pants fill up fast!

The Wayfinder Experience in Your Pants
Unlocking the Life Force in Your Pants
The Marks of Our Existence in Your Pants
Say “No” to Stress in Your Pants
Storming Heaven in Your Pants
Compose Yourself in Your Pants
Trees & Ecosystems in Your Pants
Frequencies of Healing in Your Pants
Enter Through the Image in Your Pants
Dreamgates in Your Pants
Leap of Perception in Your Pants
Timeless Loving in Your Pants

Continue reading

Beach House in the desert

Sheila and I have a great love of the desert, so I thought I would post this short film of one of my favorite bands, Beach House, playing a set on location in El Paso, Texas. I’m snowed in today, but I’m imagining it’s 80+ degrees outside instead.

Leonard Smith

Leonard_Smith_MED

My grandfather, who passed away before I was born in the late Fifties, is the subject of these passages from my father’s recollection of our family history:

I’m sure you already know that Grandpa Smith traveled the RKO Keith vaudeville circuit during the 1920’s as part of a Hawaiian music troupe featuring his then wife Princess and her supposed brother, Willie. Dad was a sideman, providing ukulele rhythm accompaniment for the act.  Back in the day, he was a petty decent uke player. He developed a stroke that was unique in that it infallibly controlled the tempo during a song. He helped cement the musical sound of the entire group. The several times I heard him play were long after he’d lost most of his chops. It was obvious, however, that at one time he was certainly quite good. Continue reading

How do I feel about this car?

Swift-Rolls-Royce

Mr. Allen Swift died in 2005 at the impressive age of 102, but his automotive story is even more remarkable. Not only is the gentleman credited with owning a Rolls-Royce automobile longer than anyone else in the world, but he had the forethought and funds to ensure its future preservation after his death.

In 1928, while living in Springfield, Massachusetts, Swift’s father gave him a 1928 Rolls-Royce Piccadilly P1 Roadster as a graduation present (Springfield and Rolls-Royce have a history – from 1920 to 1931, the British automaker built 2,944 vehicles in the city as part of its attempt to establish a US plant).

(AutoBlog article here.)

I owned a 2002 Mazda Protege for nearly ten years. It was a very nice car indeed.