The rain falling on my windshield doesn’t fit the music playing but my thoughts are flipping between what I see on the road and memories of warm sand under my feet.
Somewhere in the parade of past images I hear myself offering my hand and saying something about being a stormwalker.
“Take a ticket and I promise it will never be boring and that we’ll never grow tired of the magic show.”
There is an image of one hand clapping and an idea that it might be like that for a while but it will change but a loud snort follows that because there is no scientific proof of that.
Cue the voice of the Big O inside my head saying you have to play out the hand.
Dad’s right and it doesn’t matter whether that line showed up inside my head on its own or if it was magically placed there.
You play out the hand you are dealt and do your best to make something of it.
The Music Man
I signed up for a test run of Apple Music and have grabbed a few of their playlists. Got their essential ’70s singer/songwriter playing now and so much of this reminds me of long car rides from LA to the Sierra Mountains.
A few nights ago I fell asleep on the couch and woke up in the middle of night wondering if it was the weekend or a work night.
Took a moment for me to shake that fuzzy half awake feeling and another few to get up the energy to go to the bedroom.
Must be about 40 years ago since dad carried me from the living room to my bed, but I would have been a happy beneficiary of his moving service again.
Although it is possible it might be less, I carried a 14 year-old up a flight of stairs four years ago so maybe there was a time.
Hard to say, I was significantly taller and heavier at 14 than my own son was so who knows.
Today he is a about a quarter inch shorter than I am so it would be a production if I had to carry him, primarily because he doesn’t want to be carried.
A couple of nights past I told him I wanted to try carrying him to his room and he gave me the stink eye and asked why I would bother.
I told him it was a science experiment and he said to find another test subject.
Two days later I hit the gym determined to fix the things that are broken and wrestled with trying to find out where my max is on a variety of different exercises.
Sat down on the bench and pushed through my first set of 225 and figured I could probably put another 50 pounds on their, maybe more.
Stared at my hands and wondered if I ought to push for that 350 by 50 that I was thinking about and then wondered if I am wasting time on the wrong ideas.
Watched a short interview with Wilt Chamberlain and listened to him say he could bench press 600 pounds and wondered if I can still get there.
It would be far more impressive for me to do that than it was for Wilt. He was 7’1 or 7’2 and probably a natural 300 I am no where close.
Have to be in good shape to do that kind of weight, but is it a younger man’s game? Can I still bring that kind of fight to the game?
I don’t know…maybe.
Haven’t pushed past 300 in more than a decade and if I believe some of the crap I have heard about aging it won’t be easy to get to 500, let alone six.
Is that really a useful goal or am I better off trying to build a different kind of body?
Probably the latter but the thought of tossing around that much iron is a good distraction so I am sure that is why it keep popping up.
Who Will Live And Who Will Die
Every year I listen to Unataneh Tokef and think about all that ties into it.
For the past however many years I listen and or watch this and memories of learning about the Book Of Life as a kid flow through my head.
I always had a literal image of G-d sitting at a desk writing down who lives and who dies.
As the years have gone by there have been moments where I didn’t believe any of it and sort of shrugged my shoulders and moments where I was certain.
This year I heard When The Tiger Break Free play inside my head and it had new meaning to me.
I dreamt about dad two or three times this week that I remember.
Can’t tell you exactly where or what was going on in the first, but dad walked away without talking and wouldn’t answer me when I called out for him.
I knew what to do, I didn’t call him “Dad” and moved directly to “Orrie” which was never allowed when I was a kid.
That was guaranteed to make him remind me that he was my father and I was his son. “Don’t treat me like one of your friends.”
During the last seven or so years if he didn’t respond to me I might call him by his first name. He didn’t chastise me for doing so which was part of how I knew he didn’t see me as a kid anymore.
But if I had tried to substitute it for “dad” I am certain he would have told me he didn’t like it.
In our second dream we talked about our beards and I told him I am thinking about letting this one get really thick.
“Since nobody gives a damn I am going to just do it. The thing about living in Texas is no one will think to call me a rabbi like they do back home dad. Not that it matters, but I am doing this because I need to do something.”
He didn’t answer. He just smiled at me, bright blue eyes lighting up the room.
When I woke up I remembered the dream and immediately got the feeling I got when my sister called to tell me he was gone.
Sometimes the glamorous life falls short of our dreams and expectations, but hope springs eternal so I guess we have that going for us.