A Ghost That You Can’t See
There have been so many moments, incidents and activities since those posts were presented for public consumption I can’t quite figure out what was going on.
I only sort of recognize the man I was and barely remember the moments so I ask myself if the purpose of the blog was filled and or the point of the post.
If this joint is supposed to be serve as a snapshot in time I should be able to read my words and remember. But then again if the purpose of those posts was to provide clarity in my thoughts and serve as a way to ease the stress of those times I shouldn’t complain.
Because if I can’t really remember than the posts performed as needed but the blog failed.
Maybe that is what it is all about. Maybe the higher purpose, the one that serves the greater good was served by making it possible for a man who remembers all of the slings and arrows to forget.
But if King is correct that a good writer has to remember every scar might I ask if I have done myself a disservice by finding a way not to bring the bad back instantly.
If I teach my kids to journal and stress the importance of clear communication than I suppose I ought to ask some questions of myself.
When I can’t quite remember what happened am engaged in hypocrisy or a simple case of “do as I say and not as I do.”
It reminds me of a moment from yesteryear.
My three-year-old son was supposed to be fast asleep in his car seat and not listening to his father call another driver the dumbest motherfucker he has had the misfortune of encountering in the last ten minutes.
Instead we had almost 35 minutes of me trying to convince him I said “mothertrucker” and wouldn’t you know it, that little boy just refused to buy what I was selling.
This reminds me of a moment he and I shared not long ago.
“Dad, I just realized what motherfucker means and I am traumatized.”
“Good use of traumatized sonny, isn’t 8th grade a wonderful time of your life.”
“No, I just realized what you and mom did.”
“If I was you I would bleach my eyes and bang my head against the wall.”
“What kind of advice is that? Do you want me to hurt myself?”
“The ER is cheaper than therapy.”
“Ha ha dad. I am not going to hurt myself.”
“Good, do yourself a favor and try not to bring this conversation up with mom. She won’t find the term very romantic.”
“That is good, I don’t find it particularly romantic either.”
“And now you know why we were smart not to name you Oedipus.”
If you are ever around me when I listen to Mess Around you’ll see me play the piano along with Ray, too bad I can’t play the real thing but whatever. I play the hell out of the air piano.
The kids used to play their own air pianos with Ray and I too, but that rarely happens now. They got old and are too cool to be caught like that.
On the other hand if I am quiet and act like the ghost they can’t see I sometimes catch them playing with old toys and or doing things they are too cool to do now.
I tried to take advantage of that last conversation with my son to make a pitch for safe sex and to be smart about drugs and alcohol.
He is starting high school and even though he protests about girls and swears he thinks drugs are stupid I want those thoughts about being smart to roll around the inside of his skull.
A while back I had a similar conversation with a nephew about girls and girlfriends. He is already in high school and his friends talk a really good game on his Instagram.
Did I mention my daughter follows his Instagram and asked me to explain what some of those little boys were saying?
Uncomfortable Moments For All
When she came to me and said she could Google all of the words but thought I would do a better job of explaining I found myself in an uncomfortable situation because she doesn’t need to know why some boys used Fuck in a way that didn’t sound like it was supposed to be an insult.
So when the conversation with my nephew took place I was both father and cool uncle but the thing is, cool uncle doesn’t mean I have to act like a 15-year-old boy and try to be his friend.
I did my best to set him straight and recognized that in the age of social media and the Internet our kids are growing up faster than we might like.
Can’t put them in bubble wrap cocoons or keep their eyes and ears away from all they shouldn’t hear, but we can manage it a bit.
It is well after midnight and in a few minutes I’ll climb into bed and be asleep before my head hits the pillow. But before I do I’ll voice my irritation again with the people who ask questions but ignore your answer.
I’ll tell you it makes me crazy when someone engages in a conversation in which they expect me to ask about them and never bother to listen to the answers to the questions they ask about me.
What is the point of talking if you don’t want to listen.