She’s leaving home

Babies, Dad, daughters, Family, fathers and daughters, Life, Love, Memoir, Personal, Team Winchester, Truth 1 Comment »

love, family, daughters. life

Life is complicated.
As a parent, it’s even more so having children.
Pamela and I were blessed with three gorgeous, thoughtful, creative and extremely intelligent girls.
When one leaves the nest it’s always time for personal reflection.

Have we taught them enough about life?
Have we shown them what true love looks like?
Have we passed on our wisdom as to why Pamela and I are still married after 30+ years?
Have we done our best to teach them right from wrong?
Have we done our level best to show them our unconditional love?

I truly believe that the answer to all the above is an unequivocal ‘yes’.
Knowing that’s true somehow makes it easier to let go.
But know that I am FAR from letting go.

Jenna leaves this weekend.
She has a beautiful place that she’s moving to and she has a great draughthouse that shows great movies within walking distance.
There’s a great market nearby.
She has more DVD’s than Netflix has movies.
She has books.
God, does she have books.
She has clothes. (no comment)
She has love.
And she also has a man that will keep her safe. [he better]
That makes me happiest of all.
She has an amazing future in store and a good head on her shoulders.
Why should I worry, right?
I’ll be looking at her bedroom door on the way down the stairs every morning to see if she’s left for school.
Her room will be empty now but I’ll still look anyway.
And I’m going to miss her terribly.
I guess that’s what Dad’s do. over and over again.

Love you JMM, you’re the one that always makes me cry at Christmas.
You also burp alot louder than me.
Bitches must like loud burps.
Your true home will always be here at Shore Drive and your heart will forever be inside me and Mom.
Gentle seas, and a safe journey,
until you’re home at last.
And Bitches love home . . .

Dad

Up on the Hill

daughters, Family, Life, Love, Music, Personal, Truth 1 Comment »

 

Back in October my daughter Sarah got married.
I wrote a song for her and her husband for the wedding.
The lyrics were sent to my friend Yvonne Ashworth to be written in calligraphy,
a piece of art to be displayed in the home they were building at the time.
As of July 2013, I had no clue as to lyrics for the song, subject matter, chords, melody, rhythm.
One day in early September when the house was almost done, Pamela and I went to the house to shut
off the outside lights and bring a few light fixtures that the builders needed to install.

Me and Pamela were upstairs checking out the progress of the bedrooms
when Pam looked out one of the front windows and said,
“What a beautiful view! It’s interesting that they met on College Hill (Holy Cross),
they’re getting married at a church on Pakachoag Hill and are living here on this hill. Kinda cool, huh?”

In my head, I heard a creative ‘click’ and immediately knew a starting point for the lyrics.
My creative light bulb was totally illuminated.
The next day at work I wrote the song in my head, lyrics and all. (took 2 hours)
No need for a piano as all this stuff happens/sounds in my head, no lie.
Kind of weird but it’s true.
The lyrics explain the simple story of two people that fell in love.
Not going to explain the lyrics line by line but know that they are all about S&J.

The video above shows the transformation of my words into another art form.
My friend Yvonne went above and beyond.
She has done many exceptional pieces of art for me over the years and this one is right up there with the best of them.
Actually, what am I saying?
They are all amazing!
Check out this priceless video that gives you some insight into the time spent and work involved in
the creation of a piece of art.
I hope that Sarah and Jon listen to this song on a yearly basis and appreciate Yvonne’s precious work.

Cry for Her

alzheimer's disease, carpentry, Family, Love, Personal, Poetry, Sad, Sleep 1 Comment »

love, memory, alzheimers, marriage

As a crescent butter moon sets and the soul searing sun of the morning rises into an indigo sky
the days and nights endlessly bleed into one another like so many forgotten dreams
creating one sad and lonely heart, the shattered pane of a window in
an already fragile life that time seems to have forgotten.
the clock strikes ten, he’ll lay in bed and stir
and he will cry for her . . .

62 is a number he used to know but now he’s innocently unaware of its significance
it was a day so long ago, a crystal blue frozen moment in time that is elusive
to a cobwebbed place that once inhabited sweet thoughts, wooden cribs to be built and fighting ships on the oceans of his forever’s but
the clock strikes ten, and then again
he will cry for her . . .

She loves the man, the 62, but she knows she’s only human too
her tired eyes, her daily goodbyes, her love for the man she thought she knew
She goes to bed, rest her weary head, dreaming sunny memories of days gone by,
while never wondering why
she will still cry for him . . .

For H&G  . . .

~m

Voce

Music, Personal, questions, Science, Time, Truth 2 Comments »

voice, music, life, sound, confidence

 

I am currently getting back into playing music after a very long hiatus.
It’s a long road back but I’m enjoying the ride.
Many years ago I had some problems with my voice and my upper range.
The vocal power I had when I was 20 was long gone.
It was devastating to me.
The voice is an intensely emotional thing.
Unlike a guitar or saxophone, the voice works purely off of emotion.
Not that ‘instruments’ made of wood or metal don’t but it’s a visceral thing with vocal cords.
They are internally connected to the soul of the artist.
Some would argue that it’s the same thing with their instrument.
I’m walking a fine line here with my musician friends but I think/hope they will at least understand.

My voice is getting better these days for whatever the reason.
10 years ago it was crap to me; my upper range was total wasteland of wimpy vocal sounds.
Many folks will wonder what I’m talking about because they think I sound great.
What many don’t understand is that if the instrument doesn’t sound good to the artist then it just doesn’t work.
It’s very hard to explain because it’s a musician thing.
The voice needs many things but most of all it needs confidence.
It needs the backing of the body and soul.
Singers will agree because they know what I’m talking about.
My voice is important to me, the main reason behind this post.
I’m not fishing for compliments just understanding from people that listen to me.
I want badly to get back to a place where my voice feels comfortable, feels like me.
Thanks to a few very special people, it’s slowly getting there.
My warm ups are a bit avant-garde as they are extreme vocalizations of cartoon characters and various comedians.
I’ve found that for me, they stretch my range/cords more than mere vocal exercises.
A few of them could possibly go viral on Youtube should I ever decide to publish them.
Probably not.
As long as my vocal cords keep stretching I think I’ll be happy.
Time will tell.
Just keep listening and I’ll keep looking for the i . . .

~m

55

Birthdays, chances, Getting Older, Personal No Comments »

alone, age, years, birthday

“Do not regret growing older.
It is a privilege denied to many.”
~Author Unknown

On this my 55th birthday, I can only say that I’m happy to still be alive.
“If I knew I was going to live this long, I’d have taken better care of myself.” [att; Mickey Mantle]
Years ago I heard this quote and laughed.
Hindsight is 20/20. (that should be engraved on my headstone)
Mickey spoke the truth.
As Bernard Shaw said, “Youth is wasted on the young.”
If only they knew.
A family gathering will ultimately ensue this weekend and for that I am eternally grateful.
Oh, what a lucky man, I am. [He was]
Happy birthday to me. [and my twin sister, Maureen]
Come on 2014 . . .

~m

Kind

Blue Man, Christmas, Dreams, Food, Life, Personal, Sad 1 Comment »

kindness, homeless, love, winter, snow, cold

 

I went to get an iced tea today and was almost knocked over by this foul smelling guy
that wanted some money.

“Got five bucks?” He says.

“What happened to spare change?” I say, half laughing.

“Come on, man. I’m hungry.” He says.

“Come on, I’ll get you something,” I say.

He argued quietly about wanting money but finally accepted my offer of some food.
I’m far from well off but I felt for the guy for some odd reason.
I got him a black coffee and a glazed donut.
Cost me five bucks with my large unsweetened iced tea. (no lemon!)
I gave him the goods and he almost scowled at me.
He wanted the money more, I think.
Truth was he needed food and some liquid.
It wasn’t a Thanksgiving dinner but it was probably the first thing he’d eaten that wasn’t from a dumpster or
an overflowing trash can on Main Street.
I didn’t feel like Santa for the deed nor did I think about it again.
I’m home at my laptop writing right now.
It’s warm and the house smells like Christmas.
The tree looks beautiful and two of my daughters and Pamela are watching the Celine Dion Christmas Special in HD.
God only knows where this somewhat smelly and Blue man is tonight.
Maybe we all need to be kinder, not just because it’s Christmas but because
we’re all in this thing together.
Just a thought . . .

~m

Yuletide Cheeseburger

cheeseburgers, Christmas, Food, Friends, Holidays, Humor, Just For Fun, Personal 1 Comment »

cheeseburger, Christmas, holidaze

 

It’s at this time of the year that I generally climb inside a protective cocoon and hibernate, emotionally speaking.
My personal ambivalence towards a holiday that is celebrated for all the wrong reasons leaves me
outside and shivering on a cold and snowy night.
I know I’m not alone on this one.

‘What do you want for Christmas?’
A question heard since before Thanksgiving.

You know what I want?
I want a cheeseburger, okay?
A juicy, steaming hunk of meat fresh off the grill.
Throw that sucker in a bun and we can eat, we can sit and talk about stuff that matters in our lives.
We can be human for an hour.
And drink beer.
And eat pretzels and stuff.
Talk about the Bruins, the Pats, and the number of players we still don’t know on the Celtics.
We can talk about the Red Sox and a banner year that nobody thought would happen.
We can even talk about the Farmer’s Almanac and their Winter prediction (which I hope is shit)
Social media and smartphones have doomed our society to cyber connectivity amongst users.
Text messages, Twitter updates, WordPress pages and Tumblr posts are just words on a white screen.
We are flesh and blood and we need a closer kind of communication than that.
Cheeseburgers can change that!

A 1TB hard drive from Best Buy for all the music I listen to?
Really?
A 25$ giftcard to Starbucks for their mediocre and overpriced latte’s?
Not that either.
How’s about an Omaha Steak gift box filled with filets, burgers, sirloin and crabcakes?
How’s about that cheeseburger?
Fruitcake I will never eat?
You’re probably not much of a friend anyway.

I don’t want anything.
Period.
Amen.
And the angels sing . . .

It’s a holiday of giving, yes?
When this holiday got blown out of the water is a question that all of us need to own up to.
I work in retail and holiday sales are important but the avarice and over the top ‘milking of customers’ by
online retailers, car dealers, furniture stores, health clubs, fly by night internet schemers and online pirates must be silenced.
That’s something that will NEVER happen.
And that is profoundly sad.
It will always be about the bottom line.
And the bottom line has nothing to do with stuff we don’t need.
It has nothing to do with stuff at all.

My yuletide bells stopped ringing many years ago when I realized that the Christmas holiday was just another chance to sell.
Santa turned darkly foul, holly turned autumn brown,
carols echoed chaotic harmonies not unlike a Charles Ives piano piece.
I miss Christmases from 1970.
I miss the antediluvian ideal of the simple ‘carol’ hummed by people walking on the street, shopping in stores.
I miss the Christmas mornings that you didn’t get all that you wanted but what you got was all and more than what you needed.
I miss the simplicity of the town manger going a whole season without being vandalized.
I miss my feelings and love and respect for a beautiful and simple holiday.
But maybe I just miss the cheeseburgers.
Fire up the grill, I’m coming.
Merry Christmas, dudes and dudettes!
Merry Christmas!

~m

Whitelighter

Christmas, God, Personal, Santa, Short Story, YouTube No Comments »

With Christmas right around the corner I felt like changing the atmosphere here.
I got red and gold balls.
I got snow.
I even have ‘Merry Christmas’ in the header.
Hmmm.
Something Christmas.
I found this video floating around on youtube.
I found it interesting for a variety of reasons.
Santa is not the only Whitelighter.
Leo on Charmed was an awesome Whitelighter. Yes?
But the greatest Whitelighter?
I have a favorite.
This video has echoes of the Polar Express in many ways but subtly veers off on a
tangent all its own.
Check it out.
It’s short but sweet.
Draw your own conclusions.
Lord knows, I have mine.
Whitelighter?
Mine is the best.
 

Sold!

Babies, Christmas, Family, Food, Holidays, Music, Personal, Santa, Thanksgiving, Truth 1 Comment »

houses, homes, love, life, daughters, marriage

 

It was many years ago that me, Pamela and Sarah (3 years old?) went to my sister’s house for a Christmas Eve visit.
At that time, my sister and her husband lived 10 minutes away with my niece Caitlin, 2 months shy of her 3rd birthday.
Two 3 year olds on Christmas Eve, how great/exciting will that be?
From what I remember, it started off quite well; happiness, laughter, cocktails, Karen Carpenter singing ‘Merry Christmas, Darling’,
and a smorgasbord of waist thinning appetizers fit for a King.
Everything was going so well until Sarah found out that Santa (that sweet SOB) brought Cait an early present.
It was a Little Tikes Kitchen, fully equipped with  plastic pots, pans, a stove top and the most evil addition of all, a fake telephone.
BTW- Little Tikes toys will be roaming the earth long after all of us are dead and gone.
Talk about indestructible.
Sarah and Caitlin began playing nicely until Sarah wanted to use the phone.
(Probably to call Santa and tell him to bring her a kitchen just like Cait’s)
Houston? We have a problem.
The phone was Caitlin’s.
Period.
Amen.
And Santa (me) in all his infinite wisdom did not bring Sarah a plastic kitchen to leave under the tree.
Things spiraled down from there with pots and pans flying and two little girls crying, and me realizing I am so screwed.
I remember hating (not really) my sister that night knowing full well that I would have to search the ends
of the earth for a Little Tikes Kitchen in time for Sarah’s birthday (12/26).
I did find that kitchen on the day of her birthday.
It was delivered and all was well.
I don’t think she let Cait use the phone at her birthday party.
Santa has since recovered.

This past Tuesday, Sarah and Jonathan (the son I never had) closed on their first home.
I call it a home because that’s what they intend on making it.
It’s a beautiful place set high on a hill overlooking many surrounding towns.
The view from the upstairs windows are astounding.
I was there this morning shutting off the outside lights before walking through the house in silence.
In my mind I could see and hear all the wonderful things just waiting to happen.
I could smell bacon cooking in a kitchen that Sas and Cait will never fight about.
I could see a fire slowly burning and crackling in the fireplace in a living room worth living in.
I could even hear a piano that is not there yet, but will someday be because music somehow ‘completes’ a home.
I could feel the spirit of a long awaited Christmas that was waiting to happen, years in the making, just outside the windows.
I could feel love waiting in the wings.
A gentle hand from far and high above the clouds waved it to be.
I just know that.
Sold?
I’m sold on this home that’s just dying to be filled with oh, so many wonderful things.
This will ultimately be a most amazing Christmas.
And my inner Grinch will take a much needed hiatus (as he should every year)
A new house, a newly married couple, a first Holiday meal, the beginning of a new family.
Santa will sleep well on Christmas Eve . . .
but only after he prepares his French Toast Casserole.

~m

Once Upon A Time

Forever, God, Life, Love, Pamela, Personal, Truth, women 4 Comments »

love, infinity, anniversary

This coming Wednesday is a very special day.
30 years ago on November 6, 1983, I married my best friend.
In this day and age of disposable marriages and engagements, I’ve come to realize just how blessed I am, we are.
That’s not to say it’s been a bed of roses for all those years either.
But I never knew that I could fall in love with someone so deeply that I could never see myself falling out of that love.
My best friend IS that love.
And that love has a name.
Pamela.

In good times and in bad?
Check.
In sickness and in health?
Check.
To love and honor for the rest of our lives?
Check.

My blog has ‘our’ story pasted all over it so I won’t even begin to tell you how
I fell in love the night I first saw her; in the dark space of a smoky nightclub, I just knew.
Her hair, her clothes, the way she carried herself, her scent, her smile.
Ah yes, her sweet smile, always her smile.
Imagine my surprise when I actually saw those green eyes in the daylight.
I was like a piece of frozen butter thrown on a hot tin roof.
I still say God had His hand in this.
I can’t imagine life without her; without her grace, her beauty, her patience, compassion, mercy and most of all her unfaltering love.
She is my everything.

Who else would I cook Beef Stroganoff or my special Baked Scallops for?
Who else would be the ultimate inspiration in my music and my writing?
And who would be there to hold me up when all my walls came tumbling down?
(Not many people were looking for that gig.)

Through thick and thin she has been there.
I could never ask for more.

For Pamela:

You will forever haunt my heart,
a subtle whisper in the night, a silent look that says all I want to say
shadows of days to come, hours to love, minutes to say a few . . .
prayers of the heart, through a pulse, the wiping of a teardrop, a moment in time that . . .
silently falls into a warm and safe place where two souls meet and embrace forever, for eternity, for love.
Our shadows are the same, our love; endless, our blessings; many . . .
We are forever One.
Haunt my heart forever more . . . for all eternity

Happy 30th Anniversary to my beautiful wife with the viridescent eyes . . .
I LOVE YOU.
Always . . .

~m

love. eternity

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