Friday, February 13, 2009

Number on the Fridge

Tuesday morning I was sitting in the love seat, sipping on my must have cup o java. The sun was shining, the temp outside my window a nice and cool 57 degrees. The skies were clear, the birds were chirping, and it seemed all was right with the world. Then the phone rang, and what started out as a potentially awesome day turned to shit.

My Aunt had passed away the night before from a massive heart attack.

This was a woman I adored from the first time we met. I was an idealistic 9 year old at the time, still trapped in that middle ground between youth and young adulthood. One that adored horses so much her bedroom walls, shelves, and ceiling was adorned with figurines, posters and stickers of the four legged creatures.

So naturally, when I met my Uncles new girlfriend Laura, a fellow horsehound and kindred spirit - I was in love. And strangely, so was she. I would go visit my Dad each weekend (parents were divorced) and would ask the minute I set rear inside his massive red Chevy truck "are we going to see Aunt Laura?" He used to tease me by asking, "do you come to visit me or her on the weekend?"

I spent several summers on her farm, chasing the horses in the pasture, pestering the pigs and chickens around the house, and sometimes I'd just climb into the loft of the barn and soak in the delicious scent of sweet feed that permeated the entire place during the summer.

It was a magical time, and at the center was Aunt Laura.

She did other things for me through the years, bestowing gifts every little girl dreams of, like a pony with a big red bow in the front yard for Christmas (I was 10) but the thing I loved best about her was the way I could talk to her about anything. She never treated me like a child, never acted as if I were inferior because of the fifteen year age gap between us.

Then one day Laura decided her partying days with my Uncle and his crew had come to an end, and shortly after, they broke up. It was devastating, but I understood. She'd been abusing narcotics for years and I was proud of her for making the difficult choice and getting away from the lifestyle.

She cut my Uncle from her life but not me, and I truly believe the reason I didn't dally in the drug infested culture that is high school was a direct result of watching the suffering she endured to get clean.

Then, around 12 years ago, she met and married a man. She soon became pregnant and had a child of her own - Mikaela Lee. I continued to call and visit when I could but her old man didn't care for the reminder of her previous relationship (aka me) and eventually, we fell out of touch.

A few months ago, I got a call from my sister, along with Laura's telephone number. She had bumped into her at a gas station and she'd asked about me. I jotted the number down on one of the school calendar's on the fridge, intending to call after supper was eaten and baths were taken care of - but it didn't go according to plan. By the next morning, I was packing kids off to school, preparing lunches, and I totally forgot about the number on the fridge.

And now, I'll never get to make that phone call.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Space in the Middle

I've been a terrible blogger. I apologize. All I can offer as a weak defense is it's been crazy here, especially with the little bitty baby I've offered to help care for. I figured another little person in the mix wouldn't hurt...what was I smoking?

So now to the anomaly I was introduced to last night, something Jimbo assures me is completely normal behavior for guys.

Last night we went to see Underworld Rise of the Lycaon's (awesome by the way) and for the longest time we were all alone in the theater. About 10 minutes before it started three men come in together, stepping into the middle aisle to pick their seats. Since I was bored, I watched with a passing interest, frowning in confusion when they sat down with an empty seat left purposely between them.

At first I thought they must have girlfriends in the ladies room, but as time dragged on with no sign of their women, I knocked shoulder's with Jimbo and whispered "what's up with those guys and the empty seats?"

He grinned at the question and told me, "Men don't sit next to each other at the movies."

And what do you know, before the movie starts, another two men came in and did the same thing.

So what's up with this phenomenon? Are guys afraid if they sit next to another male in a darkened room they might somehow contract homosexuality? Or is it just an unwritten rule that I can't comprehend because I have different chromosomes?

I have to say, the best part of the night was when the trailer for this new flick called "I love you, Man" previewed. It's about a man that's getting married but has no guy friends and he has to start going on man date's to procure a best man. The portion of the trailer where one date leans in and gives Paul Rudd a little something extra at the end of the night was particularly excellent. I could see all of the men with seats spaced out squirming.

Space it out all you want hombre's. The movie screen will reveal your insecurities - every time!