The Irish Post IV: Of Curls, Commands and Cats

Irish GirlMy first Irish post came about the same way most people do, as a result of great passion and very much by accident. After which I kinda sorta knew I had a favorite place to run my writing legs, thanks to the patron Saint of those rolling green hills and the songs it birthed.

The feast of St. Patrick is about way more than drinking yourself silly. The holiday is an obligation to the cross, a pleading weep of consecrated vows handed down from the age of chieftains and nobles. It is a ceremony of songs and books and theatrical productions, the most memorable of which get played out on the smallest stages. It is a ritual whose maintenance is repaired annually and remembered fondly on the other three hundred and sixty four.

It is love. Peaceful, honest and truly that. Love.

And so this Irish post shows up a few days late, which makes it right on time seeing as how my very first Irish post showed up the same way. Coloring outside the lines is why I love this holiday so much. Well, it’s one of the reasons. Another one is curls. The red, flowing ones whose danger is implicit and whose rhyme is sweet.

Vera Irish

(Yep, I had to tuck the lovely Vera Farmiga in here, seeing as how I’ve been remiss in doing so recently. She’s the unofficial Drinks Well with Others poster girl. And okay, so maybe she doesn’t care whether I mention her or not, but my man John is okay with me doing just that. And while I’m busy with shout outs, a big thank you to the So Cal contingent of my Irish posse for thinking of me. That Wish Factor chica is good peeps.)

This year, my St. Patrick’s Day became a casualty to Monday. Tell ya what, there should be a law that prohibits the holiday from falling on a week day. Sooooo, my tradition of spending the holy day with an Irish girl was moved to Tuesday. Delayed by a day, but no less a celebration because of it.

Yesterday went green with the first toast. Me and Irish talked about the past and we laughed about the present and we drank to the future, and the 18th became the best idea since the 17th.

“Write an Irish post.” She commanded.

It doesn’t take St. Patrick for me to listen when she throws a request like this out there. She’s got hell fire inside her commands, in the loveliest of ways. We have shared the last five St. Patrick’s Days in various stages of assemblage. Not always together in the same place, but always together.

One of my favorite stories of us comes from the time after we broke up several years back. It’s a favorite story on account of the fact she’s Irish and I’m Latin, and as such we share the propensity for attaching punch lines to trying times.

I had told her I needed some time, after which she introduced me to a nuanced universe of Fuck You whenever I tried contacting her. It was a couple weeks before I could convince her to meet me for a drink; a tenuous detente, to be sure. The calamity of a pissed off Irish girl with a few drinks in her might have been something to avoid if I hadn’t experienced such a thing many times before. The curse of Yeats is my witness, but I’m addicted to that kind of romantic entanglement where a kiss or an uppercut is an even money bet. 

The conversation began sporadically as our words desperately searched for an anchor to which we could burn away the awkwardness. And then a memory found its way in, and this memory fostered a joke and before long we were regaling in the history we had accomplished. And then we were chasing away the silence with tawdry jokes and wicked glances, and we were smiling away the self imposed punishment we had created. The stubbornness of a Catholic upbringing became the common thread we could hold to and curse at. And then, as happens when the fates feel like smiling, there came an opening. 

“How’s Mr Speaker?” She asked. 

“Kicking ass and taking names, as usual. Hey, you want to see him?” I replied.

Her smile let me know what the night was going to look like.  

“Sure.” 

He won’t chase snakes and he’s a lousy mouser, but that black cat of mine proved to be the best damn wing man in the world, and the whole of Ireland.

And then a nowhere night felt like St. Patrick’s Day, with an Irish girl behaving in accordance whilst getting plenty of help from a scoundrel whose affections were rewarded in kind. And just like the Holy Day, the world got busy making all kinds of sense inside the smallest stage.

Tradition is borne in darkness but raised in light, and so it is with St. Patrick’s Day. So, as the Gaelic blessing goes . . may the road rise up to meet you and may the wind be always at your back. Just remember that the road is yours to take.

Enjoy the walk.

Giving thanks to people, their places and all the things that matter

Being as today is a day for giving thanks, I figured I would say thank you to the peeps I’ve come to read over the last couple years. I’ll intersperse my own personal thankful list along the way just to keep things flowing.

4am Writer – She rises (early) to the occasion with each post. I’m thankful for this perfect storm of passion and words.

A Wilderness of Words– If you’re going to get lost, she’s a great excuse for the doing. I’m thankful for the histories and mysteries that she spins into rhyme.

Adventures of a Dog Mama– She has two beautiful babies whose pics I never tire of seeing and she’s a foodie who’s inspired my menu. I’m thankful for the love of four legged family members we share.

The Governor- He’s my favorite character on the Walking Dead, and in my wildest zombie dreams I have this idea that my second favorite character (Carol) does battle, or teams up, with him.

A Frank Angle– This Cincinnati Kid has all the right moves- from dance floor to musical knowledge to his undying loyalty to that most reputable of news agencies, the Onion. I’m thankful for our conversations on sports.

Words for the Weekend– Her writings may be delivered up on the weekend, but they stick so delectably- like honey- to the days of the week. I’m thankful for her crazy love of ’80’s music.

Fantasy Furnace– He’s my go to sports guy for everything worth knowing, on the field and off of it. I’m thankful for the personal touch he adds to his comments.

Fiction Favorites– Blogging pals are as blogging pals do. And John does it all, with style and class and a wicked sense of humor. I’m thankful for that wicked sense of humor.

AMC- I’m thankful for their back to back movie marathons involving two of my favorite flicks ever: Gone with the Wind and The Godfather.

Guapola– I call him handsome, and yeah, it’s a man crush thing. He’s a rock star who doesn’t just ride the waves, he makes them. I’m thankful for possessing a back stage pass to all the crazy goodness.

Katrina Perkins– This lovely young woman is giving us a window into her life as a thespian, and I gotta admit I get carried away with it, but she doesn’t seem to mind. I’m thankful that she shares her road with us.

Khamillion– She’s a fashion designer who I can actually follow because she makes fashion (wait for it . .) interesting. Her posts are custom tailored, most definitely. I’m thankful for this Lady Tiger’s sharp wit.

The Miami Dolphins- For making me laugh and for expanding my four lettered vocabulary.

Rowland Jones– He’a a Renaissance man whose musical talents make any pub a home. Don’t take my word for it, check his bad self out. I’m thankful for the postcard he sent me, which is still affixed to my fridge.

Susie Lindau– The original Wild Rider (Sorry Sally) whose spirit is infectious and whose posts leave you feeling that Rocky Mountain high. I’m thankful she’s an ass kicker who’s going to be around for a good long time.

The Hook– He’s got a repertoire which speaks to all the baggage he carries. Author, blogger, father, husband, friend. I’m thankful for the fact he’s got mad skills for his every role.

The beautiful synergy of Merlot and Classical Music- Last night I fell asleep to Badinerie, which is akin to sky diving into a pillow factory.

The Petal Pusher– She was one of my first regulars at the bar, and she was always able to match my rants with the perfect comeback. I’m thankful she inspired me to keep my blog open when I was ready to shut the doors.

The Wish Factor– I kinda do wish they all could be California girls, thanks to her. She’s proof positive that the most powerful superhero in the universe is called Mom. I’m thankful for the stories of her father. It’s a book.

Veronica the Pajama Thief– She’s a vixen with verbs whose stories slink into a delicious madness with each new selection. I’m thankful for her one word posts.

I’m off on a writer’s getaway for the holiday weekend. No Black Friday nonsense or blockbuster movie date nights. Just me and my lap top and whatever happens out of it. I’m thankful for the words and stories that keep me company and allow my life to wander into places unknown. Forever thankful.

Happy Thanksgiving.

The Irish Post, Pt III

irish girlI love St. Patrick’s Day for the simple fact there is no pretense.

No overpriced gift wrapping or newspaper circular reconnaissances or calorie laden dressings or post traumatic credit card syndromes or theme park long lines to grow old inside of or ornamental lighting that throws your electric bill into NASA debt.

St. Patrick’s Day is an island. I dig that.

It doesn’t know of Cupid’s cherubs or dead President holidays that sit in the rear view, and it bears little resemblance to the austerity of an Easter best dressed stare down. If it were a smoker, St Patrick’s Day would content itself with a healthy plug of warm weathered promises in its pipe. Borne of the mandate that good friends toast often, but best friends drive you home.

So . . . in accordance with the feast day’s magical ability to bring a temporary solution to regional conflicts born out of ancient religious scrums, I came up with an idea.  I’m gonna merge my annual Irish post with my Sunday Morning Coffee Love thang and see what happens. I’m going all the way back to the time when my bachelor legs were still a bit unsteady with the proposition.

2005: On my way to divorce papers, but for that last chance saloon that most couples find themselves inside of right before official papers blank your existence into a file cabinet. We met for drinks at our old place and ended up back at the house we used to share. We played Bogey and Bacall until midnight fell and the pumpkins danced their epiphany song. 

2006: She was a single mom from La Isla Bonita who wore an Irish soccer shirt as if she knew the idea. She bought me the first drink and then we volleyed. We were crazy fun together and I pondered more of the same until I woke up to find her on the phone with the father of her brood. It didn’t matter that matrimony was no longer their province. All that mattered was that he owned a firearm of a voice.

2007: Drinks with gal pal. Our platonic existence took an interesting turn when it started getting late and The Proclaimers started walking those 500 miles. And then we got to singing the words and doing the shots and then we got to kissing, and the next thing we knew, it was french toast in bed. 

2008: She was from out of town, and she just so happened to be the best writer I ever knew. I fell in love with the words and the craziness of how those words were provoked, the whole damned thing.

2009: Same Irish girl. Same out of town place. Our passionate entanglement was going tired. But oh man, the Irish sexy of her painted words and our smoking jaunts and those sushi stops never did get tired.

2010: I found myself in the company of a different Irish girl. She was brilliant, possessed a lilt to her curse words and knew Bowie on a Doctorate level of being. I was sold on the idea that we could be dangerous together.

2011:  We ski tripped our way out of town. Me and the Irish girl with the crazy red hair that curls into a rock song every time it comes loose. She was prodding me for an Irish post, so I came to an understanding with her laptop as she played some Morrison and cooked up her famous enchiladas. I did as she told me and it ended up being the thing. As she always seems to know.

2012: Of all the lovelies I had shared the space of time with on St. Patrick’s Day, she was the only one who got me to take her to the mall. It’s those big brown eyes she uses to felonious extremes. And it’s that laugh she was gifted from her mother. I never had a chance.

This morning brought me full circle on my St. Patrick’s Day gallivant. The ex wife called from New Mexico to discuss graduation details for the boy. After which I shot off an email to gal pal with a time and place for our annual Post-St Patties Day ritual of bending elbow- sans the french toast. Then I called ‘me Irish girl to inquire on the status of her pub crawl.

I’m gonna low key things, since I’ve come to like my St. Patrick’s Day observance that way. I’ll pick up an old friend and we’ll hit the Irish pub that stole my mother’s corned beef recipe, no hard feelings. I’ll nurse my Guinness while Big Papi puts a hurting on his liver and flirts with the girls. He’ll bother me to call Irish, to find out where she’s at and have her come over. I got a feeling the bastard wants to steal my girl. Today’s his lucky day, since I’ll buy him a drink just the same. What other day of the year would fetch such a comfortable bargain?

The sonofabitch has impeccable timing, I’ll give him that.

Cole Porter’s Feng Shui, Soft Reservations and a Quickie (Food Review)

After forty days, there appeared an Olive Garden. All major credit cards were accepted, and it was gooood.

Living inside a time when Crocs outsell leather sandals ten to one and chaste has given way to Charlie (Sheen),  I figured that a feast of endless salad and breadsticks made plenty of sense on Easter Sunday.

It was an abbreviated flock I was dealing with. Mom and the girl. Their mandate being that I choose a less obvious locale for our meal. I understood this request to be relative in nature. Left to my own devices, I would have gone with pizza and beer whilst firing up some Netflix in my Sunday best pajamas.

Piety means never allowing your decisions to go bigger than your britches.

So I called ahead for seating, since Olive Garden is all about the Soft Reservation. They’ll acknowledge your presence, but they won’t guarantee it. Sort of like most major airlines. I soft booked with my restaurant alias- Riley. In case you were wondering (and I know you weren’t), I don’t use my real name for anything. Ever.

We show up to Frank Sinatra belting out the Cole Porter classic “Night and Day”, and it’s ironic since I’m fairly certain those guys wouldn’t have set foot in the joint. Porter would’ve detested the faux rustic design and Sinatra only frequented establishments that allowed him to chase his bourbon with a Camel.

“How many in your party?” Asks a kindly college gal.

For a restaurant chain that caters to families, I find the query exceedingly upbeat. I wanted to respond with, “Well, we started out with 87 but we’re down to three . . . the name is Donner.” Eh, she wouldn’t have understood. And by the time I explained it, I would have been in need of a bourbon and a Camel.

Waiting on mom, my daughter and I order drinks. The waitress offers a free sample of the House Chianti, which I politely decline in favor of the peach/mint iced tea. No sooner does she leave the table than the girl hits me with. “Why didn’t you take the wine?”

“I’m still marinating in Nyquil.”

“So what?”

“So, I don’t want to spend the next forty years watching Sponge Bob Squarepants episodes in soggy diapers, thanks.”

“Oh MY God, you’re so dramatic. Dad, it was free. How do you not take it? Free wine!”

“And you’re so transparent. You just wanted to sneak some of it.”

“No.”

“What would He think of such a thing?”

“Who?”

“Sinatra.”

WHATever.

Quick Olive Garden Review: The service would best be described as Waiting for Godot meets Silence of the Lambs. The peach/mint iced tea was delivered in a vessel which sat so high on my table that I had to ask for a booster seat.  My appetizer sampler consisted of three dishes fried beyond recognition, complete with dipping sauce. Very tasty!  For desert, I ordered the check.

Next year, I’m planning a trek to the Holy Land. If the Yankees are in town, that is.

A Kilarny Kiss and Make Up: Irish Eyes Post, The Sequel

I should have known it was too easy.

St. Patrick’s Day on a Saturday is a slam dunk. The Holiest of hops and barley days inside the cushy bookend of a Friday get together with friends and a big breakfasted Sunday? Hell, the only thing more certain than the 17th was Duke breezing through the weekend unscathed.

Uh . . . yeah . . . Lehigh 75- Duke 70.

Best laid plans, yanno? Not that I had any plan at all for Saturday, cause I didn’t. My girlfriend was spending the day pub crawling with her daughter, so my Irish girl streak was ending at four.

That knowledge is what turned my Friday night into an extra inning affair. I gallivanted the roaming march of prelude into more rounds than an old school prize fight and finished it with that penultimate objective to a bar flight gone much too long: Shots.

Needless to say, Saturday morning got to stepping a tad bit earlier than I was comfortable with.

When you wake up to St. Patrick’s Day with no desire to hold it in your arms and seal it with an 80 proof kiss, not good. The reason I didn’t have a cranky souvenir come morning is simple. I stick to the clear stuff, I drink beer on the back side, I chase all of it with ice water and I take an Alka-Seltzer before bed, regardless. It’s the Mt. Vesuvius Solution, free of charge, and you’re welcome.

I took my lessons learned and started tugging keyboard at seven thirty, full of more piss than vinegar and subsisting on Cuban coffee, YouTube playlists, more ice water and pecan waffles.

Fast forward six hours (writing time moves like rain) and the purge was hammering out a disrespectful bit ‘o payoff. I was three heavily edited pages thick and munching on a PB&J sandwich, God help me. No bar hops on my radar, no plush to lush it up inside of. Nada and colada, in perfectly unconsummated dry dock.

What’s worse, I had fielded several calls in the time in between. Cutting each one short at the knees, in keeping with my tee-totaling totalitarianism. How was it possible that this boyfriend of an Irish girl many times over had abandoned all will to bend an elbow inside the liturgy of broguish commandments?

By five thirty in the afternoon, (Post Happy Hour on a day with twenty four of the sons ‘o bitches) my obscenity knew no equal. I had wasted another hour and change in re-writing a story whose main character was Protestant enough and then followed that up by watching Elizabeth with Cate Blanchett. Granted, timing has never been a strong point of mine. But really?

Snakes alive.

Who saves me but my daughter. She asks me what I’m doing and I tell her I’m writing. She asks (wisely) whether I am dressed yet and makes certain that I have tended to her cat. And then she tells me to pick her up from Grandma’s house cause she wants to go out to eat.

So an hour later I’m tossing back a Guinness toast. Salvaging what’s left of my misbegotten soul in the weeping hours of a day gone short. Spending my time with a girl who may not be Irish, but who knows plenty well how to handle a stubborn man. I’ve been in love with her from the time her little eyes opened into a Stevie Wonder blossom song.

There has to be a Saint’s blessing hanging over me when the good women keep showing up this way.

Sunday morning coffee love

One of the reasons New Years Day is in the heavyweight division of holidays is because it’s got that time honored cliche down cold. The one that implores us to ‘live in the moment’.

We celebrate the day for its very first moment. And then we hold a Cadillac parade for the other twenty three hours, fifty nine minutes and fifty nine seconds- despite the fact all the heavy lifting was done in the very first second. Talk about getting by on reputation.

Yeah, yeah. It’s oversimplifying things. So sue me. The world is insistent on becoming more complicated rather than less so I’m just doing my part in keeping things as simple as Simon. And I happen to think it’s funny how the stroke of midnight can hold this collective appeal.

Too bad we only get such a moment of togetherness once a year . . .

I think it would be kinda cool if people came together like that, say once a month. One night a month where people reveled in the same vein as New Years Eve. Once a month, so that their pause button didn’t get rusty, jamming up their ability to reflect in turn. Where resolutions would be graded at more realistic intervals and with a better understanding. Where the time gone would not seem quite so severe a thing.

I don’t think it would mitigate the come hither effect of December 31st in the least. The last breaths of the year is a unique event. As part of a dozen such celebrations, it will still matter most.

And if we can preempt Saturday Night Live? All the better.

Zen and the art of the Coquito

A brisk walk is my daily mid morning ritual, when I can swing it. Bonus round comes when I dovetail a cup of my favorite local Joe into it.  The simple things are Zen.

“Hey!”

I kick my walk into fifth gear since the voice sounds familiar and I refuse to be denied my Zen. “Hey!”  At this point, I can launch into ghost protocol mode, but I haven’t seen the flick yet so I’m not down on that education. I choose instead to stop and turn (the conversational equivalent of stop, drop and roll).

Hey guy is my first thing in the morning baseball chat. I like hey guy. But the sovereignty of those exchanges are welcomed. This traffic stop is most definitely not. Time and place, yanno?

“I have some of that Coquito back at the house for you.”

“Very cool.” I’m really not excited in the least by this news, but for social graces. “Bring it in, man.” Translation: More social graces.

“Well, I’m going away for a week and I want you to get some of this stuff. Come by my place after work . . .”

I nod. It’s not a social or graceful nod.

“Okay,.” Evidently, my brain is on auto-pilot.

Hey guy gives me his address and I put it in my phone. It’s a thoughtful gesture but I’m already planning some heretofore unimagined event which will explain my absence later on.

“Take my number while you’re at it so I can be there.” He says. Breaking out the phone killed my Zen and my exit strategy. Evidently, I learned nothing from Kwai Chang Caine. I’m firing my auto-pilot.

No coffee. No walk. We talk Phillies and Yankees and death. Actually, I simply think about the latter and the pass it grants you from such interpersonal exchanges.

Fast forward to my double parking job in a neighborhood I had to GPS in a part of town I normally wouldn’t find myself in thanks to a situation which is self inflicted. I call hey guy, praying he won’t answer so I can flee the scene. Nope. He answers, telling me he’s a couple minutes away.

A couple minutes away could mean three minutes, it could mean ten minutes. It could mean tomorrow. I hang up and call my girlfriend.

“Babe, I need you to cover me.” I explain the situation and it meets with a giggle. I would threaten to withhold sex, but for the Y chromosome. As a man, sex is the only thing I cannot withhold. “I need you to call me ten minutes after this guy shows up . . .”

“I have a conference call in a few minutes . . .” She says.

Crap if I’m not committed now, and my three minutes are up as hey guy rolls to the curb.

“My man! You’re double parked, find a space and come on in!” He exclaims. It’s a party now. And the worst part is he’s expecting me to toss back with him. Despite the fact Puerto Rican egg nog is full of more rum than Hunter S. Thompson on a bender, this breaks my dairy rule.

My Dairy Rule: Never consume a dairy product outside of the safety of my place. The lack of carbonation means it doesn’t stand a chance against foreign contaminants (namely spittle).

My neurosis, my rules.

I park my car and proceed to help hey guy and the hey missus inside with their haul of groceries. That’s it, I’m in. Once you assist people with their groceries, you’re basically family.

A quick introduction to my new family and we’re in the kitchen. His son makes the scene, rocked out to Roca and sporting a stiff billed Pirates cap. I abhor the stiff bill look, but decide to keep this to myself since he appears to make a recession proof living, if you follow.

“‘Sup.” He says. I’m shaking enough bling to cover a New Years Eve with the Kardashians.  Should I tell him I was in a gang once? Okay, we were blood brothers in the second grade and we used ketchup since Bobby Coulter threw up at the sight of blood. But these are technicalities . . . You know what? I’m not sharing my gang experience.

“A drink!”

It’s hey guy and his brother. It’s a stare down that would send Clint Eastwood off looking for his safety blanket. It’s me, and it’s the dairy. And I notice the women and children are conspicuously absent from the scene now. I’m starring in my own personal Training Day, and despite the fact Ethan Hawke came out of that bathroom alive . . I’d like to pass on a reboot.

No troubles, cause before I know it I’m swigging. We’re tossing back and talking up what the Phillies need and what the Yankees have and the Caribbean Classic and Opening Day. My dairy rule has been defeated by the spirit of hey guy’s season.

I almost wish they were gonna be around for New Years. Almost . . .

Cayman Thorn’s Christmas Thank You

Spent the day with the sisters. They are hard at work on a relationship lost and found again- a relationship worth its weight- to them and to us. I’m hoping the girls make it, because they are my dynamic duo. In a world bereft of people to look up to, I have mine for good.

The holidays achieve many great things. Today’s accomplishment came in the form of tossing back tequila love mixes at two in the afternoon. And laughing with the family that matters most in the world. Lest I fool you into believing otherwise, I don’t go maniac on my mixology. I’m quite responsible with it, truth be told. Outside of weekends and mixers, I’m pretty humdrum. My strongest solution being green tea and a quick fix read when the alarm is set for earlier than I’m comfortable with.

It was nice to have nowhere to go and nothing to do for an afternoon. Tossing back- albeit, still responsibly- with the idea that the world was in that here and now place that gives the very to the merry. It was fat with “Remember that time?” conversations that stretch and prosper. A big and fantastic meal. And a football game squeezed in with the sound down.

To be anchored to a place such as that. It’s the gift.

I’m gonna go wrap up Christmas presents, plugged in to my standards for the night- from Miracle on 34th St and finishing with A Christmas Carol. I’ll light up the tree and throw the cat some fun loving ‘nip.

This post is a thank you to all the readers at this virtual bar. I’ll have a more advanced thank you list waiting for you next week. For now, I’m hanging my favorite Christmas song under this blog-post tree.

You rock. And Merry Christmas.

My Grinch Christmas List

If I had but one bit of advice to impart, it would be this. Life is short, so don’t waste it by standing in line at an A.C. Moore two days before Christmas. There’s a laundry list of better things you could do with your time, and self immolation happens to be on that list of better things.

Understand, I’m about as crafty as a Mormon in a strip club. So it follows that craft stores are my wrong space-wrong time continuum. At least these thoughts made some profit out of a five hour long life experience in the ‘Express Lane’.

I’ve jotted down my ideas for the imperfect Christmas gift on the seven pounds worth of receipts I was offered as my out the door prize. It seems that A.C. Moore’s idea of recycling only extends to its employees and the Whitman candy samplers. How crafty.

My Grinch Christmas List:

Nothing says “I don’t care” like a bottle of Bankers Club.

An all expenses paid European vacation! Ask your friend for a credit card with at least 10 grand on it before purchasing their ticket.

Make a donation to the Human Fund in their name

Present them with an unloaded gift card. There’s a twenty percent chance they’re never going to use it anyway. And if they happen to try? Deny everything and blame the gaffe on greedy corporate retailers.

Lottery tickets. Just make sure you scratch off before presenting so as to save them the disappointment of not winning anything. Better luck next year!

Eh, tell them they just adopted a star. The brightest one.

You no longer purchase Christmas presents since becoming a Scientologist. But there’s nothing in the Book of Hubbard that says you can’t accept them.

Indianapolis Colts tickets.

If you’re really mean, you’ll go this route.

Re-gift their gift? Sure, unless it’s a good one.

Shipping it? Well then, ask for this guy.

Better yet, go with UPS. They’re number one. This driver says so.

Get one of those Lexus music boxes and explain it this way. You spent so much on the box that all you could afford was an ’83 Toyota Corolla.

“Noooo, that’s not coal. It’s just a really lazy diamond.”

Sunday mornings have a feel

Whenever this time of year crashes in, it always feels as if it just happened five minutes ago.

And here again, this convergence of merry lists full of foreign sounding stuff and dressings of cranberry and pine colored lights littering all corners of my place. And the fierce clench of frosty weather that wrinkles the leaves to pulp and menaces away the daylight for months on end.

No more mojitos on sandy decks. No more bare feet scrunching up hippie grass. No more running in shorts. No more luxuriating under fly ball pop ups. No more ‘top that!’ diving board games. No more Simon and Garfunkel really meaning it. No more sitting on the porch and taking my time with a cool one and a good book. No more kissing in the rain, playing time to a standstill.

Winter thieves my favorite places, but it can’t steal that feeling of a Sunday morning. At least not that.