Vin Scully has died and now the voice of my childhood and decades beyond has gone silent leaving me with an aching heart.
He was the voice of the Dodgers for 67 years and a steady presence in my life and so many others.
I think I was about six or seven when my dad and grandfather took me to my first Dodger game at Dodger stadium. I have vivid memories of watching people use transistor radios so they could still hear Vin call the game they were watching in person.
During the worst and hardest moments of life there was something reassuring in hearing him say it was time for Dodger baseball.
She says to remember that men always want to fix things and that sometimes women just want to be heard.
“Listen to her and do not offer any advice or suggestion. Just listen.”
I don’t answer or give any indication I have heard anything that was said and receive a rebuke.
“Listening requires acknowledging that you heard what was said.”
I remain silent and wait for the words that I know are coming and when they finally are issued I suggest that one ought to remember that men don’t like to be nagged or lectured.
This is followed by asking if the silence was uncomfortable.
“You know it was.”
I nod my head and asked why she folded so quickly and if this was useful.
Been a decade and then some since that particular moment in time, one of the strangest job interviews I have ever been part of. Didn’t get the position and have never regretted not working for a place that thought operating like gladiators in the Roman coliseum was appropriate.
Silence and I became intimate companions long ago and not just from living alone, from people dying or from some people choosing not to talk any longer.
It was a combination of all of it and more that taught me how loud silence can be and in how many different forms.
Sometimes it is a bitter cold in which you know there is nothing to be heard because the voices you listen for are permanently silenced by choice or by life.
And sometimes it is a temporary situation in which you can hear the echoes of the future and know the tin can on the far end of the string will be used in the near future.
Vinnie’s voice is silent now and a favorite uncle won’t be around to create any more memories.
It is a bittersweet loss because I am so very grateful to have had him for so many years and judging by my Facebook feed I am not the only one who feels this way.
Clearly I am wrestling with what I want to say and how I want to say it. The idea I had for this post was very different from the one you are reading now.
I keep adapting and adjusting things here and that I am ok with that.
Somewhere upstairs there is an 18 year-old girl who calls me Dad that I hadn’t seen in a month.
We’re in the final couple of weeks before she leaves for college and so it was I found myself staring at her at the dinner table.
She didn’t appreciate it and I apologized by told her to accept that I might get lost in thought here and there about how fast time has passed.
About an hour after dinner ended she ran out of her room and called out to ask if I had heard about Vin.
That meant more than she’ll know. I appreciated her interest in speaking with me about him and having a chance to tell her a couple of stories from when I truly was a little boy.
So I’ll leave you with that and one more video of Vin saying goodbye, the consummate professional and a fantastic storyteller.