Friday, June 6, 2014

FEELING GROOVY

Today was an A+ day.

                                                 


  • I dropped a few pounds - cutting major carbs does work.  

  •  Got my lawn service bill and it was amazingly low for all they do. 

  • Glenn cooked a delicious dinner - hoisin eggplant with a side of mapu tofu.

  • We watched a Blu-Ray "Wolverine" - wonderful!

  • We did not receive one telemarketing call today - hooray!

  • I had a great work out at the gym. This one guy that has decided we are buddies and always ALWAYS comes over to me when I am deep in my treadmill trance - headphones snugly on - beautiful music flowing into my head - anyway, he always ALWAYS spots me and begins talking ignoring the fact that I have my headphones on and can't hear a damn thing he is saying. So, of course, I am forced to remove my headphones to listen to his empty blather resulting in my lovely trance being broken while I pretend I care what he is talking about. TODAY HE JUST WAVED HI and I waved back and all was right with my world as Morgana King whispered "Corcovado" in my ear.....ah.........

  • After a very busy year and a half, I have time for reading. I began a compelling book gifted to me by my "reader" niece, Anne Marie. It's called "Perfume" - I am hooked.

  •  I saw a huge array of birds at the feeders especially my favorites - cardinals and orioles.
  •  
  • Just discovered that Sirius radio has a station devoted purely to Neil Diamond who I have come to appreciate in his old age - and mine.

  • Nothing bothered me today - no nagging paranoia or needy yearnings.

  • Today was smooth sailing.

  • Odds are tomorrow will be shit..........................

                                                           

Friday, May 23, 2014

The Sign

                                                           



It hurts like physical pain. Missing someone you will never see again is a hard road to travel.

It comes and goes.

It goes away for days and months.

It returns at the oddest times.

Never appropriate.

I'll be brushing my teeth and it's there. Not a bang or boom. Yet, not quiet. More like an ache - a yearning - an "Oh God, please" moment. A flash of the possibility that it didn't happen. They are around -  not gone. I want so desperately to get on the phone for a chat. Drive over - drop in. I feel this is possible. I know it's not.

I then ponder the afterlife. I beseech the spirits. Give me a sign. Knock the shampoo off the shelf to prove  - to prove what? Knock the shampoo off the shelf to say hello - to give me hope - to inspire me to figure this whole thing out. If you love me, you'll do it.

 IF YOU LOVE ME YOU'LL DO IT!!!!!!

The shampoo remains stubbornly on the shelf. You don't love me.

YOU DON'T LOVE ME!

This extreme yearning exhausts me. So, I give it up. The longing subsides. Sanity rules. I'm back to my senses. It's mostly forgotten - for now. The yearning becomes a dull low-grade pang. That, too, will subside. I won't feel this way for a long time. And that's a blessing of sorts.

It's necessary.

It's survival.

It's what I need to live a sane centered life.

These episodes are like visits - like holy hauntings.

Perhaps they are the sign. Not the shampoo bottle.

The yearning, the missing - that's the "hello, I'm here - see you later"      


video
                                                                                      


“Give sorrow words; the grief that does not speak knits up the over wrought heart and bids it break.”
William Shakespeare






Thursday, May 15, 2014

It's In The Eyes

                                                         


When I was a kid and even a twenty , thirty and forty something, I believed that old people didn't aspire to anything - that old people didn't dream - weren't interested in any further accomplishments in life - that the world belonged to me and all the other young citizens of the universe.
                                                       


After fifty, if you haven't gotten what you wanted out of life, there was no sense in still wanting it. There was little sense in wanting to hope and strive for something else other than what you ended up doing for most of your life.

I was sure these thoughts and hopes never even entered an older person's mind anyway.

I was also positive that whatever an older person had to offer it couldn't possibly be worth much.

Hopes, dreams, new adventures, careers and romance were only for the young. 
                                                               


Older folk had it and didn't need it anymore. Older folk didn't fantasize - weren't inspired. Older folk were just occupying the space they carved out for themselves and that was that.

I think you know where I'm going with this.

To my surprise, I still dream about what I want to be when I grow up. I still strive to achieve. I am still completely interested in how I can contribute to the human community.

Believe me - listen to me very carefully - IT NEVER STOPS!

In my mind, I am not an age - a number. I am a person who is always thinking about what I can do to scratch that itch - that urge to accomplish - that willingness to take a chance - that love of a challenge. I still enjoy making new friends, eating new cuisines, sampling the latest in artful things - music, movies, theater, paintings and sculpture - architecture - BOOKS .

I'm still interested in work - working. To my utter surprise, I work all the time whether it be volunteer or for pay.
                                                          


I know I'm not alone. Anyone over fifty will tell you, age is just a number.

I am surprised when I think about this. Who would have thought that getting older does not change who you are and what you want out of life. You remain forever the same person who played with dolls and toy trucks - who watched Mickey Mouse and read picture books - who believed in Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny. Only the toys change as you age. Now it's iPods and ipads, kindles and Bluetooth - cocktails and Miller Lite, cars and sex - no more playing house.

I am still who I always was and that surprises me. Of course I have grown and acquired skills, knowledge, culture, opinions - yet, astonishingly, I am still little Anthony - a laugher, an avid observer, annoyingly curious, deeply loyal to those I love, easily hurt even by those I don't love, insecure around beautiful people, thrilled to be in spitting distance of the very talented, forever needing assurance - validation, eager to love and be loved - loved by everybody.                                




Yes, all these traits that are mistakenly attributed only to the young remain forever with me - us - all of us - I am certain.

We don't get old. We just get older. Our features age. Our hair turns grey. Our stamina falters. We pop cholesterol pills and monitor our blood pressure. But who are we? What have we become? We haven't become anything except older. We are still who we ever were.

                                                  


I am still who I ever was. In my minds eye, I am young hopeful Anthony. I wake up always with a purpose or in search of a purpose. When I catch my image in the bathroom mirror each morning, I expect to see this young hopeful Anthony. Of course, what I see is some old stranger looking back. 

But wait - the eyes - the eyes looking back at me - it's in the eyes - there he is - young hopeful Anthony ready to take on the new day and grateful for it.

                                                    

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Talking To Myself

                                                           
                    

STATEMENT


I am strong as railroad nails. I come on strong because I chose to - because I want people to know at all times where I stand.

That is one facet of me. Here's another:

I have feelings. I want to be appreciated for the good things I do. I want recognition for my hard work. I break just like anyone else when those feelings are trampled - especially by the ones I care for - the ones who I was so certain cared for me - cared enough to know I have feelings.

                                             
               


Dialogue With Myself


It is shocking when you see a side of a loved one that is so unattractive. A demeanor that emerges from them with so little effort - a total aura unmistakable in its pure selfishness. You see this happening before your eyes and you are helpless. You have nothing to say. You, the one who always has an opinion. You who sees what others don't. You who has just been thrown for a loop. You who  realizes that you are not deeply loved by this trader - this recognizable unrecognizable person. Who is he? He sits there not caring how you feel - sitting there shrouded in self love forgetting who you are - what you mean to him.

Who was he?
He was sweet and real and funny and made me feel like I was essential to his life.

What is he now?
He is selfish, hurtful, forgetful of our shared history, cruel - not nice.

How does this make you feel?
Disappointed, surprised, used and unloved.

Will you get over this?

Of course - remember I'm strong as railroad nails.

                                                            

Monday, April 14, 2014

Celebrate The Choices

Oh, to know then what I know now!

                                                       


I just celebrated a birthday - mine. Well, celebrated is not the right word. This is not to say I didn't enjoy my birthday. I did - very much. What I find hard to celebrate, however, is getting older.  What's to celebrate? You lose your attractiveness. Your abilities diminish. You are closer to your grave.

Readers of this blog are familiar with my obsession with death and the hereafter. This obsession visits me daily. Today it moved in. I am its landlord. I should evict it but this obsession has become sort of comforting. It gives me hope. As long as I grapple with it, the possibilities that occur seem plausible.

Back to getting older - is there a plus side - yes. Speaking purely for myself, I can say aging has made me more tolerant. It has given me wisdom. I know that's a cliché but, trust me, it is true. And this wisdom makes me weep with regret. If only - if only. The distance of age has given me hindsight and clarity, "Oh. that's what I should have done. It is so damn clear - now. Well, baby, it is too late."

Back to the dark side.

 I went through a period of deep regret but emerged into my present state - one of acceptance and forgiveness - forgiveness toward my self for my bad choices. After all, I have a good life and these choices - good or bad - have made me the person I am now. I know, another popular cliché but also true.

                                                 
        

So, should I celebrate my choices? I do like who I am. My time is my own. My love is my love.

Except I wish I were younger and know what I know now..................Oh, the possibilities............

                                              



Wednesday, February 26, 2014

That Damn Light

                                                    


Attending wakes, memorials and funerals are becoming a common activity. I haven't gotten complacent  as yet but I see complacency around the bend. There was a time when I wouldn't 't go to funerals out of squeamishness. I was very young and very dramatic. Now I realize that was selfish of me. Showing up at wakes and funerals is an act of kindness toward the surviving loved ones. I now know from experience as a surviving loved one that the more that attend the merrier. Well, not merrier exactly but it is a certain kind of happiness to see big numbers at the funeral of your parent, spouse or sibling AND it is comforting. We need to hear "At least he didn't suffer" and "She looks good - they did a good job" and "Well, he is at peace - no more pain" and "She's looking down at us and smiling"

Clichés' abound and so what. It is all meant well and the grief is shared in all varying degrees from "what a shame - tsk tsk" to "Oh my God!" - wails and whimpers - all necessary all inevitable.

It is unavoidable these frequent events. As we age death lurks everywhere. Our contemporaries and those senior to us become the "at risk" community. I think it outrageously unfair how life works. As we gain wisdom and a true appreciation for this gift of life our time for such appreciation diminishes. We don't quite see that light we are supposed to walk toward but we do see our mortality - not as comforting as that light we are always hearing about.  
                                                    


But what can be done about this gross unfairness - this illogical last phase of life?

Nothing.

So, some of us go to the gym religiously. We diet - eat healthy - lots of broccoli and blueberries - multi-vitamins - positive thinking - anything to delay seeing that damn light.

Some of us pray.

Some get religion. Now the rotten bastards want to play saint. They drop their sense of humor and proclaim they are born again. Everyone is a sinner and they are pure. After all, don't they attend church every Sunday. Don't they pity the poor. Don't they now know Jesus. Don't they condemn all who are not like them. "Isn't that dress cut too low"  "He drinks, you know." "She's such a slut." He's a homo."  Surely they will be welcomed into eternal grace - so they think.

Yes. as we get old some of us panic as our friends and family leave us. Is it just a matter of time for us? Are all these wakes and funerals paving the way - our way toward that light we keep hearing about?
                                                       

Many say "Just don't think about it."

Hm...............

Well. I don't think about it until somewhere in my week  - week after week - I am confronted with another loss. Whether it be a personal loss or that other loss - celebrities, actors etc. that we grew up with - loving their songs, movies, books - this is a reminder that our world - our particular generation and all its bells and whistles is winding down to a memory - a footnote for the present up and comers.

I don't like it.

But there's nothing I can do about............

I just won't think about it.

Uh huh.......right!
                                                 
                                                 

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

bite

                                                       
      


Ami Melamed goes his own way. He knows what he likes and we like what he knows. Okay, I'm being cute. bite(in lower case), a soup, salad and sandwich restaurant on 14th St. in Manhattan is seriously cute. Mr. Melamed, also cute, has created a very hip joint. So hip that if you are not hip, by the time you leave bite you will have joined the ranks of the NYC hip.

His sandwiches, soups and salads are made from organic ingredients. It is all gourmet delicious. You will discover one of a kind sandwich creations. I especially like  - no - love - the Sabih made with humus, eggplant, hard boiled egg, salad greens and a spicy dressing on a bread of your choice. I like the ciabatta. The salads are full meals. I adore the goat cheese salad. It is heaven!

While you are in heaven you will be transported to cloud 9 with Ami's divine chili. Spicy & thick, it is served in a bowl with a mound of white rice in the center and sour cream hanging to the side. Whenever I travel to NYC, my first stop is chili at bite. I dream about this chili.

                                                        


There are plenty more choices on the menu including homemade cookies and brownies - so good. The thing is, bite is original. There is nothing like it in all of New York City.

And there's nothing like Ami Melamed in all of new York City.

                                                     
  

Let's talk a little bit about Ami Melamed. Here is an extremely amiable man who undoubtedly enjoys his restaurant and its customers. It is not unusual to see him chatting with diners as if they were old friends. And they are. Anyone who frequents bite will get to know this terrific guy and gain the status of "old friend". . I once remarked about the beautiful music playing in his restaurant. Ami disappeared returning with two Cd's -he gifted me with copies of his current play list for the place. His friendliness is sincere not solicitous. Bottom line - I like this guy.

Now, I have to relate a most important and compelling fact. bite is unbelievably inexpensive. Gourmet quality food is served up for under ten dollars! Oh yes and satisfyingly so. This fact may be the reason bite attracts the large student population nearby and artists of all disciplines. The attractive and colorful clientele make bite all the more appealing.
                                               


Good food, people and prices and the lively location make bite one of my favorite destinations while in New York City. Go to bite's website to peruse the menu and learn more about Ami Melamed. You will certainly be intrigued.

bite website  http://bitenyc.com/about.html