Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Smoke Of A Distant Fire

Back a few long years ago, I was honored to be a bridesmaid in a friend's wedding.  We wore beautiful wine colored gowns, had wreaths of dried flowers in our hair.  I sported an 80's Diane von Furstenburg-esque long perm kept in place with massive amounts of hairspray.

At the reception, I danced with a long-time friend of Wingman's.  We circled the dance floor and he dipped me backwards gracefully. As I came back up, I saw this look of horror on his face, and he started hitting me in the head.  People all around were starting to scream, and I saw the photographer coming towards me with a water glass and a wet linen napkin, which he threw on my head and doused me with cold water.

The reason for the hitting, screaming and sudden cold shower was that my dance partner had dipped me into live candles and my dried flowers and the back of my hair had caught on fire.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Might As Well Jump. Go Ahead And Jump!

When I was working at Wrinkle City, A/K/A the retirement playground for rich old people, the very cute executive chef gave a talk one day about how a person's taste buds change as they get older and they lose the ability to enjoy food as much.  He went on to say that you have to add lots of texture and spice to foods to make them more appealing.

I don't think that holds true just for food, because it certainly applies to my life.  One day last month, I found myself coming home from an event (alone-no +1) thinking that I am loosing my joie de vivre. The event was certainly beautiful, but was absolutely no fun because I'd stopped feeling the textures and tasting the spice.  I'm maintaining Wingman's gardens but all I see are the weeds. I'm a manager in one of the top, hip nationwide retail stores, but all I think about is NOT working anymore and traveling.

I needed a serious bitch-slap.  One to wipe the RBF off of me.  You haven't heard of RBF? It's the new buzzword this summer, a/k/a "Resting Bitch Face".  I look in the mirror and it's not just resting.  It's everyday.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

While My Guitar Gently Weeps

When I was in my first full-time job, I had two friends who were seriously in the market for the guys who would be good enough to marry them.  We would sit at lunch and I would listen to them make lists of the qualities that their husbands would have to have.

I thought about what I wanted as well: I didn't care what his profession was, but a man who wore nice suits and wing-tip shoes to work. A good tan to set off the crisp white (or I would accept baby blue) shirts and rep ties that he would wear.  A nice car (the BFF was dating a guy with a yellow Corvette). And, when the time was right, someone who would propose to me with a heart-shaped diamond engagement ring.

When I met Wingman, the list went right out the window.  He was a part-time bartender going to a local community college after giving up an out of state football scholarship because he was homesick.  His wardrobe consisted of one peach polyester suit, and a drawer full of tank tops and tee shirts with holes. He had a motorcycle as well as a car with no muffler that sounded like her nickname: "The African Queen". And, after dating him for six years, he gave me not a rock, but a rocking chair to "seal the deal".

But he did have this great guitar.

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Doctor Doctor, Gimme The News

When I was a kid, there were not as many choices for doctors as there are today.  There was the old-fashioned pediatrician who made house calls.  As a budding first grade Typhoid Mary, I brought home Chicken Pox and infected the whole house.  The doc came with his black bag and said "Yup.  Keep 'em home," condemning my mom to whatever the incubation period was for probably a few bucks for the diagnosis.

Then there was the GP-the man who had an office in the front of his house, who examined us with a Popsicle stick in one hand and a cigarette in the other.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Dancing To The Rhythm That Is In Our Soul On Saturday Night, Saturday Night

From the day I met him, Wingman was a huge fan of Saturday Night Live. After all, it never competed with a single Yankee game on TV.  And perhaps, Saturday Night Live owes him a big debt of gratitude for helping create one of their more popular skits.

I met Wingman at a party. We tried to find common ground (certainly not our heritage with me being Irish/Italian and him Czech/Polish) but we did like the same movies (Casablanca) and TV shows (Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman). He was incredulous that I had never seen Saturday Night Live, which as the second season began, became a weekly ritual for us.

Wingman was working as a bartender at the time I met him, and knew a guy with connections to the show.  He called me one night in June and in a voice three octaves higher than usual, squealed "I got us an invite to the SNL season ending cast party!" For two kids from the burbs, this was beyond cool.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Shower The People You Love With Love...Show Them The Way That You Feel

With very few exceptions, 2014 turned out to be more "MEH YEAR" than "MY YEAR". True, I finally got a full-time job as a manager with the company I worked part-time at for six years, and couldn't be more grateful.  In November, I became a grandmother for the third time in two years-this time a beautiful baby boy who was named after Wingman. But beyond that, the year was quite unmemorable. Which made writing at a certain point difficult.  If I wasn't interested in my life, why would anyone else be?

All things considered, with 2012 being my personal worst year (Wingman dying, Sandy destroying so many belongings in the house as well as losing my job all within 92 days) this year was at least tolerable.  As I recall, 2014 was more about getting it together than getting together.

That's not to say there weren't good times.  The trip to Florida to help someone deal with her ex was great.  Surrounding myself with thirty or so cute college boys for a home-cooked meal in March was a night I'll always remember.  And, of course, nothing could beat the surprise birthday party my kids threw for me in October. But it was New Year's Eve alone in 2013, followed by the same on Valentine's Day and Mother's Day which turned most nights last year into my own version of Groundhog's Day.  There were too many nights sitting alone WITH the dog and not enough nights putting ON the dog.