Got another night with Donny Mac singing as I work on finding out if maybe this post is made up of the write stuff or not.
Still writing in a million other places and spaces as I haven’t done in quite some time, digging deeper and going harder as I rediscover a rhythm long since buried.
Tear off the scabs, tear off the shackles and own the words and stories as was done in the past. Those that read can accept or deny the truth in what is said as they will.
Because when you remember that carousel pony can’t ever do better than the position it is made for you jump off of it and make choices.
Jump off and figure you can engage in a different sort of up and down or in and out with more control than spinning in circles.
Won’t be long before I am a bachelor again and as go about our preparation there are conversations with the teenagers.
One such conversation with a teenage girl reflects a conversation with another parent about her and potential opportunities.
My baby girl responds exactly as I expect her to and I am tempted to reach out to the other parent and share this experience. Tempted to ask if they know a damn thing about teenage girls and remind myself if nothing else she knows because she once was one.
Reminds me of a conversation with a different person who tried to explain to me what teenage boys were like.
I listened for a moment, reminded them that not all teenage boys are the same and then said, “I remember.”
It is not an exaggeration, I remember what it was like to be a teenage boy in so many ways and with such vivid detail I sometimes wonder how so much time has passed.
Maybe it is because some things never change as much as we might pretend or hope they do. Maybe it is because as mature men and women we still sometimes manage to interact as if we are still in high school or maybe it is something else.
One of the boys calls and tells me about the woman he is dating and how she says she won’t get serious with him.
He asks me to come up with the right words to sway her and I tell him I don’t know what those would be.
“Josh, you are a writer and you have been in sales. Why can’t you give me some more elegant and eloquent way to get her to move from her space.”
“Brother, I can give you all sorts of expressions but you have to say it in your words so that she understands it is not bullshit.
Tell her she doesn’t have to have the same feelings and that you choose to love her even if she can’t or won’t say the words.
Tell her you are an atheist but she makes you believe in the divine and that if she gave you a shot she might too.
Tell her you are going to walk away because she might be the third best you have ever had and you promised number one and two you’d protect their positions.
Or tell her that when you close your eyes you always see her looking back at you.”
There is an extended pause followed by a question, “Good Lord man, you rattled that off without hesitation. Tell me you didn’t just come up with that on the spot.”
“I found it in a card shop in Cleveland.”
“Wait, when were you in Cleveland?”
“Never been. I know people from Cleveland. I know a couple of things from living a little bit and having been the heartbroken and heart breaker. I write.”
“How often do you write and how much?”
More often than people realize and enough to stay sharp.
Old friends ask if I got a hat when I moved to Texas and I tell them not this time around, reminding them that I have been back for just short of three years.
My folks got a hat for me when I lived here in 2013. It is Black, not sure I could do the white one.
I like darker better.
The memories of walking with them through the Stockyards are kind of bittersweet, mostly sweet though.
It is easy to remember Dad’s hand on my shoulder and talking about a million different things. Standing in the knife shop, trying on hats, watching Longhorns be driven down the street.
Six years later I am looking at airfare, wondering if I ought to just buy it now because $312 is a pretty good deal but hesitating.
This trip back is for his unveiling and I am debating whether I am going to shave the whole beard off.
I am torn about doing so. Part of me wants to do it as I appreciate the symbolism in it and part of me isn’t so thrilled.
Is it because of vanity of because I can hold onto a piece I am not ready to give up.
Part of me wonders if I ought to just fly one way so that I can pack up the rest of his tools and take them back with me to join the other tools already here.
That is an issue to because I like seeing them there, in the house, but I can’t use what I don’t have here.
And every time I grab his hammer or a screwdriver it is almost like I can see him standing or lying down next to me working on the same project.
He used them to create and to repair and that’s why they are meaningful to me, because with them we continue to work together.