Friday, May 31, 2013

Community

One of the things in this life that I rather enjoy is when people band together to really help other people.

I was listening to a story about St. Jude's Children Hospital as well as the Ronald McDonald House. I also had the chance to see the kid in the wheelchair throwing out the first pitch at the Boston Suck Sox game.

I really liked the kid.

Even though he was talking to Pedro.

Even if he was wearing a B on his shirt.

And there's so much crap, right?

Amanda Bynes - I wrote about her yesterday.

LeBron James - "I know I'm great. I wanna' get greater. If that's possible."

Douche Armstrong. "I'd start my 'I'm sorry tour', but I don't know that I really cheated."

And on and on and on.

Meanwhile there are people who give their time and money away and don't look for thanks.

Granted Bill Gates is doing okay, but do something weird sometimes and look up how much he's given to charity.

Billions.

He does it on the sly.

A few years back I did a book and donated my portion of the profits to the Buffalo City Mission. I tried to get others to do the same.

(Not pulling a Bron-Bron and telling you I'm good)

It comes with a story.

"I don't give money to those places," one lady said at one of the signings. "Those people steal it."

I did my best:

"People give to charity for the way it makes them feel inside," I said, with a smile.

"Besides," she said. "People need to get off their asses."

I took a deep breath. My book was about someone born into tragedy.

Getting off 'his ass' wasn't a viable solution.

"Did you know there are a lot of people who really suffer and sometimes it isn't their fault?" I asked.

"Cry me a river," she said, and then she laughed and walked away.

(Bitch didn't even buy a book)

In Boston that poor kid was standing in the wrong place when a bomb went off.

In Oklahoma people had their homes ripped from the foundations.

Same thing in New Jersey.

Sometimes a woman has to make a choice to leave an abusive situation and find shelter from the storm.

"Cry me a river."

Indeed.

If you got a leftover dime think about the people in tragedy-swept areas.

Get it to them somehow.

It'll make you feel good inside.

Where it counts.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Another Wedding Anniversary

It's funny, but everything that's sort of worke out for me was seen, in advance, by my beautiful wife. She sort of figured out all of this before I was involved and while we laugh about her strong financial decision of years ago, I got the best of he deal. Happy Anniversary. Bruce helped with the sentiment, of course.

Happy - Bruce Springsteen

Some need gold and some need diamond rings
Or a drug to take away the pain that living brings
A promise of a better world to come
When whatever here is done

I don't need that sky of blue
All I know's since I found you, I'm happy when I'm in your arms
Happy, darling, come the dark
Happy when I taste your kiss
I'm happy in a love like this

There's a house upon a distant hill
Where you can hear the laughter of children ring
Guardian angels, they watch from above
Watching over the love that they bring

But at night I feel the darkness near, I awake and I find you near
I'm happy with you in my arms
I'm happy with you in my heart
Happy when I taste your kiss
I'm happy in love like this

In a world of doubt and fear
I wake at night and reach to find you near
Lost in a dream, you caught me as I fell
I want more than just a dream to tell

We're born in this world, darling, with few days and trouble never far behind
Man and woman circle each other in a cage
A cage that's been handed down the line
Lost and running 'neath a million dead stars
Tonight let's shed our skins and slip these bars

Happy in each other's arms
Happy baby, come the dark
Happy in each other's kiss
I m happy in a love like this

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

The Amanda Show

Isn't it weird that we are all sitting on the side of the road watching this Amanda Bynes girl crash the car over and over?

The NY Post is having a field day and every other media outlet is along for the ride. We hear about the Twitter rants, the weird haircuts, throwing bongs to the street.

One thing after another.

And how do you stop it?

Does anyone want to?

I guess it's all part of the sideshow. We watch someone rise and then sort of giggle as they fall.

I remember The Amanda Show.

I'm not sure which of my boys was caught watching her, but we sort of teased him...Matt, I'm guessing...anyway, he sort of had a crush on her and I don't know why it is but the guy paying for the television doesn't get to watch what they want.

So I saw The Amanda Show, and she was funny, and the show was highly successful.

But what happens when the cheering stops?

I guess we found out.

She's crashing the car hard. Over and over and over.

I was horrified when I saw her photo in the paper at court. She certainly didn't look like the same innocent girl.

How does life do that to you?

Money?

Self-importance?

Everyone who was kissing your ass suddenly turning on you?

I'm not sure, but it sort of sickens me.

Will everyone be stunned when the inevitable happens?

We saw it with Michael Jackson and Whitney Houston. We saw it with about 50 more if you really think about it, and yet we are fascinated by the crash.

Well, time to sum it up, I suppose.

I gotta' check to see what Lindsey Lohan did last night.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Dopey Bastard Day

So, one of the kids is no longer a teen.

Yep, the son who I affectionately refer to as the Dopey Bastard is now 20.

"Let's not say 'Happy Birthday'," Sam said as we heard Matt make his first appearance of the day.

But I couldn't resist when Mommy ran to the room to check on the baby cub.

"What do you want for your birthday?" Kathy asked.

"Take him to the bus station," I said. "Get him a ticket anywhere he wants to go. He's done. I only cover 20 years."

But I'm thinking we'll have him on the hook a bit longer.

We decided to order dinner in as I've been struggling. Matt offered a ten dollar gift certificate to the cause.

"How much did that cost me?" I asked.

"I got it from my finance professor. That class only cost you two grand."

Perfect.

It's been a rather one-sided financial deal thus far, but what can you do? That's the understanding.

He's living up to his side of it thus far.

Now he's on to the challenging, confusing decade. I felt the most confused at the end of my 20's because you get caught between what you're doing and what you want to do.

But he's being set up right.

At the start of the year I texted him just before his first class.

"Your next couple of years will set up your next 40."

"I know," he texted back. "I'm going to bust my ass."

And he did.

He got great grades this year in some tough classes.

"Did you see my grades?" he asked.

"You're still a dopey bastard," I said.

Happy Birthday.

We're both living up to our end of the bargain.

Monday, May 27, 2013

How to Observe Memorial Day

Too often we forget why we are getting a day off.

"...gather around their sacred remains and garland the passionless mounds above them with choicest flowers of springtime....let us in this solemn presence renew our pledges to aid and assist those whom they have left among us as sacred charges upon the Nation's gratitude,--the soldier's and sailor's widow and orphan." --General John Logan, General Order No. 11, 5 May 1868

The "Memorial" in Memorial Day has been ignored by too many of us who are beneficiaries of those who have given the ultimate sacrifice. Often we do not observe the day as it should be, a day where we actively remember our ancestors, our family members, our loved ones, our neighbors, and our friends who have given the ultimate sacrifice:

By visiting cemeteries and placing flags or flowers on the graves of our fallen heroes.

By visiting memorials.

By flying the U.S. Flag at half-staff until noon.

By flying the 'POW/MIA Flag' as well.

By participating in a "National Moment of Remembrance": at 3 p.m. to pause and think upon the true meaning of the day, and for Taps to be played.

By renewing a pledge to aid the widows, widowers, and orphans of our fallen dead, and to aid the disabled veterans.

Also, please consider adding your voice in support of the efforts to restore the traditional day of observance of Memorial Day back to May 30th (instead of "the last Monday in May").

This would help greatly to return the solemn meaning back to the day, and to help return minds and hearts to think upon the ultimate sacrifices made by those in service to our country. Just one day out of the year to honor our loved ones, our ancestors, our friends who died in conflicts and wars -- not to honor war, but those that died in those conflicts and wars.

I receive many emails from people expressing their thanks for those who have served and gave the ultimate sacrifice for this country. The following, received in 1999 and used with the author's permission, sums up all the emails I have received very elegantly, and is true to the original spirit and meaning of Memorial Day.

"This weekend I am going to do something different. I am going to buy some carnations each day and go to one of the a nearby cemetery and walk through the sections for soldiers.

When I find a grave that has no flowers, I'll leave one and say a prayer for the family of that person, who for some reason could not bring their soldier flowers.

I will pray for our country and all who serve or have served.

For their families, who also serve by losing precious days, weeks and months spent with their loved ones who are off serving, preserving peace and the freedom we have in this country.

I'll pray for the families who paid the ultimate price, who's loved ones died, or were taken captive and never returned.

I'll pray for anyone who may still be held in captivity and thinks perhaps they are forgotten.

I do NOT forget.

I'll say a prayer for every person on the Internet who takes a moment from their time to come to sites like yours and be reminded of what this holiday really means. And I'll say a prayer of thanks and ask God's richest blessings on you.

Thank you again.... and God bless!

Sylvia Mohr

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Still Limitless

I'm writing this at twenty minutes after two on Sunday morning because the pain in my back from the shot in my groin a couple of days ago woke me up.

Also, Matthew just came into the house after being out celebrating his 20th birthday and I heard the fridge open ten times.

And finally, I'm fresh off a party with old friends, new friends and the best friends - family members - in which a lot of thoughts entered my mind.

You see, we talked about the glory days. We compared aches and pains. Most of us in the nearly 50 crowd were limping around.

"You have something hanging down your back," someone said to me.

"It's the tail from the ice pack," I said.

And none of that is the important stuff.

My sister made a passing statement as she sat between Sam and me talking.

"It's like looking at the same set of eyes and hearing the same voice."

Then a young adult in the crowd asked me what I was writing next.

"I haven't been doing much," I said. "I'm not really pursuing new things even though I have some in the can. I sort of did what I set out to do."

And then on the way home I was feeling contented.

I was driving alone.

There wasn't anyone along who could complain about my I-pod.

And I got the same song twice.

Landslide.

First Stevie Nicks singing it live and then immediately Natalie Maines from the Dixie Chicks.

(I love Stevie, but Natalie has a better voice).

And what hit me was:

Can I keep alive the childhood in my heart to rise above.

I actually played the song a third time (Natalie's version) to hear it again.

Songs are dropped in by the good Lord above.

It was a different party.

"I was 135 pounds when I graduated high school," I said. "My wife pointed at a photo of me and asked, 'Who was that?' and I told her he was the guy I ate."

And that little joke fit right in.

Where are we now?

The stages in life.

It would be nice if someone alerted us to when we were passing into a new stage. Like on a video game. Give us the next set of challenges. Let us know how to complete the level, using the things we used to get us through the previous levels.

Like the childhood in our hearts.

Before the Landslide brings us down.

And through it all, with the tail of the ice pack still trailing, I still felt contented.

So far I've sort of done what I set out to do.

And too many people slip off the tracks.

And come crashing down.

And too many people start off on the wrong path and can never get over onto the right one.

I thought of laughing with my friends. I thought of the same set of eyes staring back at me from the eyes of my child. I considered laughing at my hysterical brother-in-law, Chuck, doing an impression of my Dad, and I considered the guy I ate.

It felt like I'd reached a new level.

Ready for the challenges.

Still limitless.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Memorial Day Weekend

Driving home from Syracuse on Friday night I was listening to the I-pod and the first notes of Thunder Road played and I was tired. In fact, for a fleeting second I thought about advancing it...saying sorry to Bruce and waiting for the next song. I Said it was a fleeting thought. I don't think I can ever really do it. And you must understand that it sometimes crosses my mind to skip it, only because it's painful. It's a song that makes my heart ache for my siblings. I remember sitting in the basement of my parents house trying to get the lyrics right in a day before Google. Bruce mumbles a few of the words (marble-mouth Corinne calls him). I think of singing it with Jeff on a porch...without music...in Florida. We sang it every night for two weeks after drinking at happy hour and before going out drinking. I recall singing it with Kathy at about 20 concerts. Her off-key rendition making me laugh.

And then the fist-pump for pulling out of here to win.

Damn, it's great.

The I-pod always knows.

A great Memorial Day song. I bet you sing it in your head as you read the lyrics.

Thunder Road - Bruce

The screen door slams, Mary's dress sways
Like a vision she dances across the porch as the radio plays
Roy Orbison singing for the lonely
Hey, that's me and I want you only
Don't turn me home again, I just can't face myself alone again
Don't run back inside, darling, you know just what I'm here for
So you're scared and you're thinking that maybe we ain't that young anymore
Show a little faith, there's magic in the night
You ain't a beauty but, hey, you're alright
Oh, and that's alright with me

You can hide 'neath your covers and study your pain
Make crosses from your lovers, throw roses in the rain
Waste your summer praying in vain
For a savior to rise from these streets
Well now, I ain't no hero, that's understood
All the redemption I can offer, girl, is beneath this dirty hood
With a chance to make it good somehow
Hey, what else can we do now?
Except roll down the window and let the wind blow back your hair
Well, the night's busting open, these two lanes will take us anywhere
We got one last chance to make it real
To trade in these wings on some wheels
Climb in back, heaven's waiting on down the tracks

Oh oh, come take my hand
We're riding out tonight to case the promised land
Oh oh oh oh, Thunder Road
Oh, Thunder Road, oh, Thunder Road
Lying out there like a killer in the sun
Hey, I know it's late, we can make it if we run
Oh oh oh oh, Thunder Road
Sit tight, take hold, Thunder Road

Well, I got this guitar and I learned how to make it talk
And my car's out back if you're ready to take that long walk
From your front porch to my front seat
The door's open but the ride ain't free
And I know you're lonely for words that I ain't spoken
But tonight we'll be free, all the promises'll be broken

There were ghosts in the eyes of all the boys you sent away
They haunt this dusty beach road in the skeleton frames of burned-out Chevrolets
They scream your name at night in the street
Your graduation gown lies in rags at their feet
And in the lonely cool before dawn
You hear their engines rolling on
But when you get to the porch, they're gone on the wind
So Mary, climb in
It's a town full of losers, I'm pulling out of here to win

Friday, May 24, 2013

What's New?

So there have been a lot of headlines that have sort of passed me by since I became thoroughly disgusted with the world and all the politics, but we have to touch on a few, right?

Did you see Eva Longoria's dress sway up showing her going commando?

Me neither.

How about the Tea Party crap?

Not to say that I'm a big fan of the IRS - who the hell can root for them - but it's terrible when a group of people flock together and try and push their agenda on others without thought to what the other factions are thinking. I mean, who has time for prejudice, crazed agendas and close-mindedness?

Right Tea Party?

And what to make of the drone strikes and all the other acts of terrorism?

Do you see that there are women out there who actually are smitten with the surviving Boston bomber?

"He's really cute," one lady said on the streets of New York.

Really?

He set off a bomb in a public place, shot at the cops, ran over his brother's melon and tried to kill himself in the back of a boat in some guy's back yard.

How do you bring that guy home to meet the parents?

It's a crazy freaking world, isn't it?

Jodi Arias is heading for a life behind bars or death. I just can't believe that the jury didn't buy her story that it wasn't her fault. She did everything but take the freaking skin off the guy.

Yeah.

Self-defense.

Good riddance.

Then mix in the acts of nature, the Yankees on the D.L., and LeBron still winning and it makes for a very anxious me.

Ah well, 3 day weekend coming up...if we get to it. Thinking party at Jim's, a few laughs with the family, and some baseball mixed in. Melky and Paor-Pair are looking forward to the extra car rides.

Have a great Memorial Day.

Be safe. Get a driver if you need one. Eat until your heart is content...

...and Go Yankees!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Stupor Mario

I've really been enjoying the back and forth between Mario Williams, the highest-paid Bills player of all-time and his former fiance.

Talk about your love stories.

About a year back we were getting reports about Mario Williams visiting the Bills as a free agent.

Could it be possible?

Would he really sign here?

How could the Texans let him go?

Turns out, the Bills were bidding against themselves. No one really wanted him. The Texans didn't. The rest of the league stayed out of the bidding.

He arrived. The fans cheered. Mario and his girl bought a house near Jim Kelly.

All was right with the world.

Except Mario kind of stunk. He sort of sulked. The team was lousy again.

Ah well. Perhaps he'd bounce back. Young guy. Lots of talent. Plenty of chance to make amends.

But recently a story hit the news.

The fiance was now the ex-fiance.

Mario wanted his engagement ring back.

It's a $795,000 ring.

For that much money that ring better vacuum, dust, do the grocery shopping and turn into an in-ground pool for the summer months.

The fiance decided that she wanted to keep the ring.

She dissed on Mario telling the football world that he's sort of mentally and unemotionally unstable.

I'm sure it came as quite a shock to his teammates who seemed to really enjoy his company and the fact that he brought his own fridge to his locker because he didn't want to walk all the way to the shared refrigerator.

I'm really gonna' follow this story.

It's the most Bills excitement we've had since 1995 or so.

You gotta' BILLieve!!!!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Poor God

In a tragedy like the Oklahoma tornadoes the pointing of the fingers is almost too much to handle. The twitter feeds all go like this:

"Horrible! Thoughts and prayers with those poor people!"

And then there's this:

"God will help those people get back on their feet!"

I always look at those because someone will certainly write:

"God!!!! God!!!! Didn't He send the tornado in the first place? LMFAO!!! God!!!!!"

And I never participate in such a debate.

What could possibly be gained?

It's like the Tea Party versus the Crazy Liberals.

There's no sense in arguing it.

I was reading something the other day about a woman who had lost her home, job and kids. She went back to work and after quitting drinking and buckling down, she found her way again.

"God is Great!!!" She wrote.

I'm sort of the mind to argue that God didn't just suddenly become great.

He was great when she was screwing everything up, wasn't He?

Wasn't it she who became great?

God isn't an excuse.

God won't reach down and answer things for you.

He won't hold the bong pipe for you, just as He won't grab the door of opportunity and allow you to walk through.

You were already gifted.

What you make of it is what you'll become.

God didn't send the tornado.

They are a fact of this life.

They are a part of His world.

Yet God will be there, in the details.

If your heart allows you to see Him.

That's just my opinion, of course. I certainly could be wrong.

God may very well be up there laughing and blaming it all on the fact that some state passed the gay marriage law.

It's all in how YOU, in your God-given heart see it.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

All New People

I started my Sunday morning newspaper reading with an article about a young guy who ran from the cops, put his car in park and jumped in a lake in an effort to get away. They cornered him with a copter over head and cops wading into the water to put the cuffs on him.

I suppose he has a good story for somewhere down the line.

Yet it was a weird week as two longtime North Collins residents were laid to rest and a lot of my lifelong friends experienced that overwhelming grief. I stood with a grieving daughter in the funeral home that I hate. We were looking at the photos of the well-lived kingdom of days.

"She did it all," my friend said.

And one line entered my brain.

In 100 years. All new people.

And I suppose we can't live our lives thinking about it much, but some people should think about it a little, huh?

We all did some crazy crap as kids. Some of us even carried it a little futher, right?

But eventually there has to come a moment when we think about what we will leave behind.

'Cause 100 years from now what will our days have meant?

It's all about putting one good day after another, right?

As a parent there's so much angst as we think about what their days will hold. It's a natural thought to think about their days being problem-free and blissful.

It doesn't work that way.

They will need to make their own way.

Hopefully they won't be diving into a lake to elude police.

But if they do hopefully they will be able to turn it all around.

"She did it all," my friend said.

"It's what we all aspire to do," I said.

"YOLO," people often write in order to justify doing something really stupid.

I'm thinking YOLO should be a statement of doing it the right way.

Ah well.

In 3013 maybe they'll know a whole lot more about living the right way.

I doubt it.

It'll probably be the same old recipe.

Monday, May 20, 2013

All Night Long...Until Grey's Anatomy Comes On

So. On Saturday I went to see the girl I'm seeing on the side.

Stephanie, my massage therapist.

Stephanie has become very important to me as I battle the never-ending injury to my hip. It can best be explained that the muscles, tendons and ligaments are prone to tightness on a routine basis. I can pinpoint the trouble spots about five days before the visit. Stephanie knows that her work is cut out for her. She has to work hard.

Anywhoha...

I'm not bitching. I know a lot of people who are really sick. I'm healthy other than the bum hip.

It's all the good eating and clean living I do.

Well, on Saturday we were going through the motions. I was listening to the tape that was on...Faith Hill. Not my favorite. I like the Adele or Norah Jones stuff when my muscles are being worked.

Good old Faith was singing her heart out though. It was an up-tempo ditty about being in love. There was a male singer in the song and they were trading verses. The basic essence of the song was this:

We're gonna' make love all night long. We're going to share our love until our strength is gone.

I laughed.

Stephanie stopped working my left shoulder.

"What?"

"I think the lyrics are for the younger folk," I said. "I can imagine saying something like that to my wife. She'd call the looney bin."

Stephanie must have let the lyric sink in because after Faith sang it again she laughed.

"Right," she said. "You should write a song about old love."

It got me thinking.

"Hurry the hell up," it'll be called.

"Grey's Anatomy is on."

We both laughed.

"Till our strength is gone," I said.

"It's just about over when I bend down to take my socks off my stinking feet."

"Are you gonna' write a song about it?" Stephanie asked.

We let the subject close. We went straight to the movie that Kathy had me sit through on Friday night. Save the Date.

"It was a romantic movie about young folk," I said. "There was all the angst about young love and the drama that goes into it. Three-quarters of the way through the movie I wanted everyone to die."

Stephanie laughed again.

"You are such a romantic. Kathy is a lucky girl."

I believe the time has passed.

All night long.

That's funny.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Words for McGurk

It was my pleasure to be able to do the eulogy for Stroker McGurk. This is a reasonable guess at what I said.

It's a great honor to be asked to say goodbye to Harold McGrath.

Actually, I can't even pull that off with a straight face.

I'm saying goodbye to McGurk.

That's what a whole bunch of us called him.

I really only called him 'Bezerk' but that was just between him and me.

You always hear it said that life is a gift, or that friendship is a gift, or that the love of a Dad, a husband, a grandpa, a brother - welcome to his brothers - and an uncle - is a treasure provided by the Lord, but to be honest with you, I felt that a lot in McGruk's presence.

He was gifting me.

His smile was tremendous. I remember him laughing after I said something wise-ass.

I'm not sure you know it, but some of us Fuzzy's are smart-asses, and McGurk loved that.

His wisdom was astounding, and I really, really looked up to him. As one of my Dad's friends, as a great Dad to beautiful Shannon and wonderful Michelle.

We all hurt for him so much when he lost Michelle.

His family had been stripped of a pure treasure.

And I often think of the wonderful friendship that McGurk shared with so many people, and my Dad in particular.

I often think about them all hanging together back in the day; laughing, eating all sorts of goofy things - even things that they'd pick out of their lawns - perhaps drinking, telling stories, causing trouble, and drinking...(Did I say that?)

They were like the North Collins rat pack, weren't they?

They were better than the rat pack.

Dad, McGurk, Norm, Albert, Joe DeMarco, Nado, McGurk's racing pals, Joe Santa Maria, the late Johnny Gullo..and so many, many more.

They had less money and less fame than the real rat pack, but I know one thing for sure:

They ate better food, they had better women and better families.

Just know that there are so many of us gathered here today to say goodbye to a wonderful man. He gave us so many gifts.

Every day.

Every single time we saw him.

So in the days ahead, let's all concentrate on what we got from the man.

I'm thinking of his laugh.

I'm thinking of the way he fixed a million cars of a million people in this town.

(Half of those repairs were from Fuzzy drivers).

I'm thinking about the love he held for Frenchie and the girls. They were all that really mattered, and like a real man, he stood up to the task.

I was just a young boy when I first thought of McGurk as a true idol.

He raced around the tracks.

He finished first a whole bunch of times.

As he hit the finish line of life there's only one thing to truly say.

McGurk left so many others in the dust.

God Bless you, buddy.

There are a whole bunch of us left here who are gonna' miss you.

Thank you for all of the gifts.

(I really wish I could yodel here, but I can't!)

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Don't It Make My Brown Eyes Blue

I swear this story is true.

Go back in time with me to 1986. I was living in Mountain View, California with Jim, Dad and my buddy Tom Ryback who drove across the country to stay with us because he was young and wanted to do something like that. Another buddy, Scott Weiser was just down the street at the Naval Base.

A whole bunch of single guys from Buffalo in a sunny location in the summer. We were bound and determined to meet a lot of those California girls.

We kept screwing it up though. We enjoyed beer and tequila a lot too. We'd hit the bar determined to meet a beauty and wind up sitting at the bar laughing, drinking and laughing some more.

No regrets.

One night Tom dragged me to a new thing - a Karaoke bar. I'd never been to one.

I haven't returned either.

I'm not sure if you know this about me or not but I'm a Springsteen fan.

Tom tried his best to get me to go up and sing a Bruce song. It took him about ten beers to talk me into it.

Yet that night there were two people working as a host of the event. Their job was to sing songs if there were no volunteers. One was a male guy who took a real shine to Tom. I'm not saying the guy was gay, but we were awfully close to San Francisco. Neither us cared anyway if the guy was gay or not.

He was just singing in a bar.

The girl who was the second singer for the evening sorta' liked me.

"You have the darkest brown eyes I've ever seen," she said.

She was a cute girl. I know this is crazy, but I remember her name - Donna Lewis.

Anyway there was a break in the action and Donna went to the microphone.

"This is for brown eyes," she said. She then broke into Don't it Make My Brown Eyes Blue.

At the same time she was singing Tom's buddy was working on him. When Donna finished singing the male singer grabbed the microphone.

"Tom and Cliff are going to sing Born to Run."

I didn't have time to get out of it. Tom and I grabbed a microphone and proceeded to absolutely crucify the song. The twenty or so people in the crowd did not clap, or boo.

Instead they sat there with their mouths agape.

When the song ended I told Tom to grab us a beer.

"I'm broke," he said.

I was broke too. We were too young for credit cards.

"Now what?" I asked.

"You have to ask Donna out," Tom said.

I was skeptical.

"Let's just get out of here," I said.

I headed for the door. Tom followed close behind, chiding me to grow a pair.

(This is the part of the story where it gets weird).

Just before we arrived at the car something floated at me through the air. I grabbed it. It was a ten-dollar bill. Tom was also lunging. There was cash floating at us. We ended up with over $40.

Not kidding.

"You gotta' ask her out."

We headed back into the bar.

I worked up the nerve to ask Donna to come over to our apartment complex. Jim was going to cook for us the next day.

It certainly would be nice to say that a love blossomed.

Of course it didn't.

Halfway through dinner Donna reached across the table to grab a roll. Evidently she got too close to the gravy because Jim grabbed her hand and dunked it into the gravy bowl.

I never saw her again, and all of this comes to mind because the song came up on my I-pod the other day. My beautiful wife turned to me with a pained look on her face.

"This is a good song," I said.

"No, it isn't," she replied.

"A girl sang this to me once," I said. "At a bar."

My beautiful wife just frowned.

"She must have been something," she said.

(Be mindful...this is coming from the woman who married me).

One last thing just to tie up the story.

They made a tape of our rendition of Born to Run. We popped it into the tape player in the car. Two lines in Tom popped it out of the player.

He threw it out the car window and it drifted away on the wind.

Don't it Make My Brown Eyes Blue.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Longest Days

Time to run this one again. I thought of my friends in the Rinaldi Family. Keep the Faith. So Sorry for your loss.

John Mellencamp - Longest Days


Seems like once upon a time ago
I was where I was supposed to be
My vision was true and my heart was too
There was no end to what I could dream

I walked like a hero into the setting sun
Everyone called out my name
Death to me was just a mystery
I was too busy raising up Cain

But nothing lasts forever
Your best efforts don't always pay
Sometimes you get sick and you don't get better
That's when life is short even in its longest days

So you pretend not to notice
That everything has changed
Way that you look and the friends you once had
So you keep on acting the same

Deep down in your soul
You know you, you got no flame
And who knows then which way to go
Life is short even in its longest days

All I got here is a rear view mirror
Reflections of where I've been
So you tell yourself I'll be back up on top some day
But you know there's nothing waiting up there for you anyway

Nothing lasts forever
And your best efforts don't always pay
Sometimes you get sick and you don't get better
That's when life is short even in its longest days
Life is short even in its longest days


Thursday, May 16, 2013

The Juice Update



Remember when OJ was a world class athlete?

He's looking a little doughy now, isn't he?

I really get a kick out of the people around Buffalo whenever the topic of Orenthal is raised.

This is what people say:

"I know he had problems after football, but man he was great."

Problems?

Really?

Running out of money is a problem.

Having a trick knee is a problem.

Perhaps having the old homestead foreclosed or running into IRS trouble is a problem.

Gutting your ex-wife and her friend is more than a problem.

I'm embarrassed for Buffalo whenever I think of Orenthal.

They don't even have the balls to take his name down from the Wall of Fame at the old Ralph Wilson Stadium.

The official Bills stand is that what OJ did on the football field got him up on the wall and that hasn't changed.

Nice message for the kids.

Maybe they should post the photo of that fat disgrace next to his famous name.

What a joke.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

The Answer Is Never 'No'

After seeing something stupid in one of those stupid romantic movies my beautiful wife makes me watch she asked the kids:

"If you had to choose who would you live with Mom or Dad?"

The two kids who are always politically correct refused to answer.

Jake didn't hesitate.

"Dad."

Of course, my wife was horrified.

"I like to eat, and he cooks. I like things organized," Jake said. "Besides, he let's us do what we want."

The kids all agreed on one thing:

"He acts tough, but he's a push-over."

And I suppose I might be.

The last couple of weeks have been rough as I've been working a lot. In fact, most days are at least 12-hour affairs, but some of the sting is gone because I do type reports at home, and the boys feel free to come up and interrupt me.

I'm glad they do. There needs to be a balance.

On Monday I was knee-deep in work crap when Jake came up the stairs with his phone.

"I have to play you a rap song," he said.

That's not exactly the sentence I want to hear, but I took a deep breath and thought of something I heard awhile ago.

If your child wants a moment of your time, the answer is never no.

He played the song. I'm not sure who the artist was. A white kid. The song was about loss. It actually had coherent thoughts.

"That's not bad," I said as the song finished up.

"I knew you'd like it," he said. "It's good writing, isn't it?"

And it always occurs to me that my boys want my approval and that my impatience at times or disappointment with something is a guide for them. They want to make me happy.

And that's a great thing. It's what every parent hopes to accomplish.

During the Bulls-Heat Playoff series we got to working about working hard. Their superstar Derek Rose hasn't yet returned because he doesn't feel mentally healthy after being hurt. Meanwhile, their big man, Noah, has played through all sorts of things.

"Noah, doesn't care," Sam said. "He'll work through anything. He's like you, Dad."

And that was a huge compliment, right?

"Yeah, the guy who climbs a ladder the day after knee surgery," Jake said. "Now that's a real genius."

But at least I know they're paying attention.

And it would be real un-genius like of me to say 'no'.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Do Ya' Think I'm Sexy

I listened to Rod Stewart for an hour and a half yesterday. He was being interviewed by Howard Stern. As per usual, Howard asked all the right questions about all the girls, the friendships with other rock stars, and the writing of the music.

The time went so quickly, and by the time the interview was over I liked Rod even more. Howard treated Stewart with a lot of respect, as well he should. Stewart has written so many great songs through the years.

What did I learn?

1). Stewart drives his kids to school in his Rolls Royce and the Ferrari. He does it to embarrass the kids. He also attends their PTA meetings and even read a story to the class. Howard asked the right question:

"Do any of the female teachers try to bang you?"

Rod just laughed.

2). He loves model trains. He has a huge display in his mansion, and sometimes he spends entire days just creating and changing and building.

"Men need a hobby," he said. "So we leave the women alone once in awhile."

Howard asked him if he wore the conductor hat while he was building.

Rod just laughed again.

3). Maggie May almost didn't make it onto an album. The record company hated the song as did Stewart. The song only saw the light of day because he didn't have another song ready. Brilliant stroke of luck there.

4). I heard songs from the new album. There was a time when I bought every single Rod Stewart album without hearing a tune. The stupid American Songwriters crap stopped me from doing that - Howard played the song, "It's Over." It was brilliant. I pulled over to the side of the road and purchased the CD with about ten keystrokes. I can't quite get used to that, but I'll be listening to it soon. I love talented people.

5). He only wrote 1 song that he knew was a hit. Do Ya' Think I'm Sexy. He sang a few sentences of it when we saw him in Buffalo back in 1994. It still ranks as the most surprising concert of my life. Rod was awesome. I'm still a little hungover from that night as is my brother-in-law Chuck, my brother John, Corinne, and Dana. Jeff was my date that night. One of the great days.

6). Keith Moon could out party Rod. All right. I might have guessed that one. Stewart told a story of a night that stretched into the morning. He begged out of the endless drinking by telling Moon he couldn't drink anymore. "Get lost, you wanker!" Moon told him.

7). He still thinks he could play with Faces again. If the Stones ever quit and he gets Ronnie Wood back.

The fun part of listening to the survivors of the rock and roll days is to hear them discuss how they take care of themselves now. Early to bed and early to rise is their motto. They continue to push themselves because they love what they are doing.

Great interview.

Rock and Roll Hall of Famer.

And the best thing I learned?

He's done singing the American Songwriters garbage.

All new tunes from here on out.

Very cool.

(This blog goes out to my sister-in-law Carilee who would leave her poor husband Jim in a minute if Rod told her too).

Monday, May 13, 2013

I Don't Like LeBron

I'm trying to figure out why I have so much disdain for LeBron.

I actually liked him at one point. He always seemed like a solid citizen.

His talents are indisputable.

He ended all of my good feeling with one sentence:

"I'm taking my talents to South Beach."

In those 7 words he went from someone who's basketball skills were admired to a true villain in the land of 'Thoughts of a Common Man.'

And we learned that he donates money, and that he helps kids. And he sort of apologized for the grandiose display.

But it ain't enough for me.

Because I think he's fake.

There, I said it.

He strikes me as insincere as A-Rod.

He flops.

He starts all of his sentences telling me how great he is.

He gets every call.

If you touch him he acts as if he's been shot.

I want to see him fail.

And I hate myself for it.

I should be the bigger man in the relationship, but I just can't.

He's the only athlete I watch and think:

"Turn an ankle!"

On Friday night one of the Bulls players pushed him hard in the center of the chest.

All the things I've told my kids about sportsmanship went straight out the window.

"Take your talents to the floor!" I screamed.

At the half the reporter asked him a question:

"We came here to play basketball. We don't have time for the extra curriculum activities."

"You should have packed a book when you were on the way to South Beach!" I screamed.

Please, God....make LeBron lose.

Please! I ain't got much going here.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Momma'

I guess I pay attention a lot as a writer. It's part of the gig.

I say one thing all the time, fairly consistently.

The love between a mother and a child is amazing.

Simply amazing.

I was blessed to see it with my Mom.

Every day.

For years and years and years.

I am equally blessed to see it with my beautiful wife and the hoodlums who eat us out of house and home.

She starts a lot of conversations with me that begin with one of their names.

"Matt did pretty well at school," she'll say.

"Matt who?" I'll answer.

"Jake really breaks his ass when he plays defense."

"Jake who."

"Sam is just so loving."

"Sam who?"

You get the point.

And it's not that I don't feel the same sort of pride. Of course, I do, but Mom's job is to worry about every single little emotion.

There is no problem too small.

The other day they were raising their voices while playing a video game. All three of the morons were in on it. We were just starting to watch a movie.

Kathy started to get up to see what was happening.

"Just let 'em go," I said.

"I can't," she answered.

And therein lies the difference.

She came back laughing.

"They're little dopes," she said.

"I could've told you that from here."

She started the movie.

A contented smile on her face.

That's a Mom's love.

It's brighter than the sun.

It stands the test of time.

It's truly astounding.

Happy Mother's Day.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

You Wanna' Be A Hero?

Did you hear the interview with Charles Ramsey, the guy who sprung those poor girls loose in Cleveland?

McDonald's was talking about giving him a job as some sort of spokesman.

He was on all the Morning Shows.

He was an overnight sensation.

It took them two days to tear him down.

Turns out he was charged and convicted of beating a woman.

A few times, apparently.

Still think he's cute?

But it speaks more to the day and age we live in.

It seems like everyone wants to be known. We have Honey-Boo-Boo and her mother. We have Paris Hilton and the Kardashians. Tim Tebow is all the rage and it turns out he can't really play football.

These people are dissected in a minute by the media.

Lift 'em up.

Smack 'em down.

The only thing that mattered to me was it sort of gave me pause. That guy jumped in and became involved. He saved those kids from more torture when it appears that no one else truly gave it their all.

And now his life will be a living hell, right?

Even more than what it was, evidently.

But what happens if someone witnesses a crime and decides not to play the part of the hero because they wonder if the media will tear them a new one because of something that happened in their past?

We need people to stand up and do the right thing.

Even if it's followed by a life or moments of doing the wrong thing.

I don't much care for wife-beaters, but let's all lay off the guy on this one.

Let him have a moment in the sun.

Perhaps it can save him from his own demons.

Lord knows he saved those girls from their personal devil.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Bumble Bee

So, they found a burial place for the Boston bomber, huh?

I know that it was quite the issue for a little while there. You've really sort of failed the test, haven't you, if they can't find a place to put your remains after the cops shoot you and your brother drives over your empty melon.

What a shame.

I've spent the week trying to stay positive, but it's so hard! I wanted to just read and discuss items that were good for the heart, but the Cleveland mess, the kids who've been shot with their parents' guns.

Damn.

And today I was listening to a show and a man came on talking about how 'God, in general, doesn't make much sense to a reasonable thinking man'.

The guy was a 'I'm smarter than you' type of a real asshole.

Yet I listened to him.

And then the host started back at him a bit.

He explained that if he bought the basic premise that God didn't exist than 'How the hell can you explain everything?'

"Man wants to take credit for everything, and they pride themselves on all the wonderful things they've built, but no matter how hard they try they'll never build something as wonderful or intricate as a freaking bumble bee."

I liked that.

The host went on to explain the power of scent that a dog has. I don't know if it's all true - I haven't had the chance to talk it over with Melk-a-Doo or Pair-Pair too, but I will.

"If you're baking a cake it's believed that a dog can break down the scent of every single ingredient of that cake."

The atheist was as closed-minded as you'd believe, but he also blabbered on about the big bang being the explanation of everything.

I tried to digest all of it and swing my thoughts back to positive thoughts.

I thought about the 2-year-old who lost his life when shot by the 7-year-old. The older kid had found his uncle's gun.

I wondered if the uncle was still in favor of no checks on anything.

If something like that would happen would you ever pick up a gun again?

Positive.

Positive.

Positive.

I'm gonna' just ask the dogs about scents.

Then I'm gonna' tell 'em all about the bumble bee.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

All that Matters

One of my favorite artists, Mark Knopfler contributes the entry today. A Beautiful, simple song with a singular beautiful thought. One that we often forget.


My darling girl
My darling girl
You're all that matters
In this wicked world
All that matters
All that matters

My darling boy
My darling boy
All of my sunshine
And all of my joy
You're all that matters
All that matters

Well, i can't stop the pain
When it calls
I'm just a man
And i can't stop the rain
When it falls, my darling
Who can?

My darling girl
My darling girl
You're all that matters
In this wicked world
All that matters
All that matters

My darling friend
My darling friend
All we've got going
Is love in the end
It's all that matters
All that matters


If you don't listen to Mark Knopfler's solo records you're missing a ton of beauty!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

More Love Thoughts For You

Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.

Lao Tzu


Love is when the other person's happiness is more important than your own.

H. Jackson Brown, Jr.


Live so that when your children think of fairness, caring, and integrity, they think of you.

H. Jackson Brown, Jr.


Love is like a friendship caught on fire. In the beginning a flame, very pretty, often hot and fierce, but still only light and flickering. As love grows older, our hearts mature and our love becomes as coals, deep-burning and unquenchable.

Bruce Lee


I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.

Martin Luther King, Jr.


A loving heart is the beginning of all knowledge.

Thomas Carlyle

Love does not begin and end the way we seem to think it does. Love is a battle, love is a war; love is a growing up.

James A. Baldwin


Love begins at home, and it is not how much we do... but how much love we put in that action.

Mother Teresa

Monday, May 6, 2013

Stroker McGurk

If you pay attention in life you'll really meet some great people. If you open your heart wide they'll get in and stay there.

For years and years and years.

Stroker McGurk was my Dad's great friend. His wife and my Mom are still close friends. Growing up in a small town affords you some real living too because Stroker and Frenchie are my friends too, and their daughters were like little Fuzzy's as we all grew up.

My first memory of Stroker was one of great admiration.

More like adoration.

I sat with my Dad as McGurk raced around the tracks at the Holland Speedway. My siblings and I were screaming our fool heads off when Stroker crossed the finish line first.

As the years passed the adoration only grew. Every time I saw him in the years after that, I remembered that I thought he was great.

His greatness never paled in my eyes.

McGurk was always laughing with us.

He entertained us with an amazing yodel a time or two.

We used to ride to the dumps together every Saturday, and we shared a beer or two once we all passed the age to do such things.

I never met a person who didn't love the man.

All day yesterday his photo was front and center on Facebook. I'm not sure he'd know what Facebook was, but he'd be proud that so many people sent love to his family.

Because he loved his family.

And there were hundreds of people in his family.

About twenty years back McGurk drove us to the Aud to watch a prize fight. Boom Boom Mancini was the highlight of the fight card, but Boom Boom lost that night, much to our dismay.

But it was such a great night.

We took turns running to get beers from the stand.

John went in the 3rd round of the first fight on the undercard.

I went in the 8th round.

McGurk went in the 13th round.

He missed the knockout.

As the next fight started McGurk said he wasn't getting burned again.

He was going first.

The 2nd round started and he headed off.

The fighter was knocked out before he even reached the beer stand.

And we laughed about that for years.

Last summer I saw McGurk at a party. I told my Mom I was going to say hello.

"He may not remember you," my mother cautioned.

I sat at his side.

He smiled.

"How're you doing Bezerk?" I asked.

I had called him that since I was 5 years old.

"Good, Fuzz, how are you?" he asked.

I'm gonna' miss him.

But he's not far away.

In fact, he's smiling right now.

Right in my head.

Right next to my Dad.

Captain Corelli's Mandolin

Love is a temporary madness.

It erupts like a volcano and then subsides.

And when it decides you make a decision.

You have to work out whether your roots have so entwined together that it is inconceivable that you should ever part.

Because this is what love is.

Love is not breathlessness.

It is not excitement.

It is not the promulgation of eternal passion.

That is just being in love,

Which any fool can do.

Love itself is what is left over

when being in love has burned away

and this is both an art

and a fortunate accident.

Those that truly love,

have roots grow towards each other underground,

and when all the pretty blossoms have fallen from their branches,

they find that they are one tree

and not two.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Paris, France

Life is funny, isn't it?



The days flow by. We lose ourselves in the bullshit things that catch us by surprise.



We try to make it work. We suffer unbelievable crushing losses.



And we keep fighting. We really try hard to accept that which we can't rise above.



And sometimes we get a nod from those who appreciate our efforts.

But in the end, what we did and how we left our mark can only be counted in how we made others feel in the time we are here.



The love of my family was something that I've never taken for granted.

Jeff always surprised me.

The fact that the story of his life has won 10 awards in 10 book festivals from Southern California to Paris, France shouldn't be a surprise.

But that's how you leave a mark.

That's love.

That's family.

That's greatness in life.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

The Grass Is Greener?

I was reading a story the other day about a woman from Pennsylvania who hit the road and didn't look back. She had two young children, a boy and a girl, had just quit her job because it wasn't fulfilling enough. She was also supposedly in a strong marriage. She fell apart in a park one day, met a couple of people who were heading for Florida.

She hitched a ride.

She never mentioned anything to her friends and family back in Pa.

11 years passed.

Somehow the law caught up with her and ran her ID. Turns out there had been a massive search for her. Her husband and kids had moved on, thinking that Mommy died.

I'm sure that we've all had that thought from time-to-time.

Just pack it in. Quit the job. Quit the whole freaking deal.

Yet very often we look across the fence at the bright green grass and when we get across the fence it's a bit on the brown side.

I'm not much of a quitter.

I sort of hate change.

Always moving ahead, and never looking back.

Life has certainly changed though. It used to be that people stayed in one job all of their days. They appreciated the opportunity they were given and looked to give back.

That's sort of changed, hasn't it?

Now it's about what they can get and how it affects their lives.

"The pussification of America," one of my old bosses once called it.

"I want, I want. I need, I need." I've often called it.

"How many sick days do I get?"

"What's the vacation schedule?"

"I worked an extra hour!"

I'm not the greatest corporate guy in the world but I do believe you should earn what you receive. That woman said she was tired of putting in the effort each day.

The grass isn't always greener.

Effort in is required.

That woman who ran away ended up homeless.

Her kids aren't all that interested in ever seeing her face.

I wonder if she thinks about her decision.

Sometimes we are fulfilled before we think we're not.

Be careful of what you wish for.

You might come up short.

A Week of Love - A True Hero



The above photo is a shot of one of my heroes in life.

That's Michael Gaglianone.

He's a ladies man.

He's a Phillies fan.

And a Yankee fan.

He loves sports.

And his family.

He always smiles.

My Mom had a day spent with Michael last summer at the baseball benefit in honor of Jeff.

"He's a wonderful boy," she told me just last week. "I really enjoyed talking to him."

And every time I think of Michael I smile.

Because he reminds me of his Mom.

And his Dad.

And sometimes love fills up your heart

And makes it want to explode.

Sometimes there's just so much beauty in this world.

And I thought of that immediately when I saw this photo.

I thought of sitting across from his Dad about thirty years ago.

There was a backgammon board between us.

We talked about finding the love that we needed.

We talked about dreams.

We fantasized about how perfect it would be to be a Dad.

And my buddy had all of his dreams come true.

And that is beautiful.

He's a handsome bastard, isn't he?

Friday, May 3, 2013

Sign This For Me



Back when I was a teenager girls sort of thought I was best left alone so I collected autographs with a few buddies who had time for both the ladies and the sports guys.

As per usual it became an obsession for me. I wanted to get the signature of all the big stars.

As you can see from the photo above, I did pretty well.

The Mantle personalized one is awfully great. So is the DiMaggio, the Gretzky, the Willie Mays, Henry Aaron. Just on and on and on.

My two favorites are that way because of the way I had to go about getting them.

Wilt Chamberlain was famous for never signing. As a kid I couldn't understand that. I was real young when I was shooting for his signature. I sent him photos - once a week - begging him to sign.

He never did.

So I decided to write him a letter.

I added a dollar bill to the package to sweeten the deal.

I imagine that the letter went something like this:

Dear Wilt,

You are the greatest player who ever lived.

I really want your autograph.

I sent some pictures.

And a dollar.

You can keep the dollar if you sign my pictures.

Love,

Cliff


I got the package back about a week after I sent it.

The photos were unsigned.

The dollar was even in there.

It was signed:

'Peace, Wilt Chamberlain.'

The 2nd coolest one I ever received was from Nancy Kerrigan. Back when she was getting her knee whacked, I was still without women and sort of infatuated with her story. I bet my brother, Jeff, $50, I could get her autograph.

I mailed photos to the town she lived in up in New England.

The envelope was filled out like this:

Nancy Kerrigan
Bedford, Ma.


I didn't even add the zip code. Let those lunatics down at the P.O. look it up.

Two days later the photos were returned...signed.

I have 5 Nancy Kerrigan autographs.

I never did get the $50 though.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Does Someone Really Care?

Jason Collins is a pro basketball player. He currently doesn't play on a team as the season has just ended and he's a free agent. He's also a bench player as well, and on Monday he came out and told the world a secret.

He's gay.

I'm not sure what the deal is, but I imagine that someone, somewhere thinks that it's either:

The most horrific thing ever

or

The most courageous thing since Jackie Robinson.

I don't think it's either, but I don't even know why someone would want my opinion on what somebody else does with their life's choices.

A friend of mine once tried to sway me to the anti-gay side by telling me that 'it's against my religion.'

So is hate.

I'm not the guy who's gay so if God has a problem with homosexuality it better be that he has a huge problem with it if he also damns all who didn't speak out about gay behavior.

It's not my place.

I just think that most of the angst in the world is by trying to tell someone how to act in the way you want them to act. Wars are fought over religious differences more than anything else in this universe. Friends hate friends nowadays because one has a liberal slat versus a conservative side. Guns or anti-guns? Bush or Obama? Tastes great or less-filling?

Who cares?

Here's the greatest lesson I've learned as an adult:

You can't get people to behave the way you want them to.

and secondly,

You're a real dope if you think you should be the one setting all the parameters.

I do applaud Jason Collins as a man.

That's not an easy thing to stand up and face. And if he's on a team, face it he will, but I just find the whole thing sort of weird.

Why do we care about someone's sexuality?

Do you know what everyone you know likes in a sexual partner?

Have you ever started or ended a friendship based on if the guy likes to kiss his girlfriend on the neck, or likes his feet tickled or his back rubbed as foreplay?

Who cares?

Can Jason Collins shoot the three? Does he rebound well on the offensive end?

Those are actually more important questions if you're gonna' hire him to play basketball.

But if he does land on a team make no mistake about the fact that he will hear every possible insult from a hateful public.

That's what is sort of cool about his stand. He knew there'd be hate and that it'd be a real rough road, but he stood up for himself anyway.

I sort of care about that more than the rest.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Happy Birthday to My Nephew James

To James:

Bruce wrote this for you. Ask your Dad to play it for you. I know he feels every word. Love ya' buddy.


Surprise by Bruce Springsteen

Well surprise, surprise, surprise
Yeah surprise, surprise, surprise
Well surprise, surprise, come on open your eyes
And let your love shine down

Well surprise, surprise, surprise
Yeah surprise, surprise, surprise
Well surprise, surprise, come on open your eyes
And let your love shine down

Well today is your birthday
We've traveled so far we two
So let's blow out the candles on your cake
And we'll raise a glass or two
And when the sun comes out tomorrow
It'll be the start of a brand new day
And all that you have wished for I know will come your way

Well surprise, surprise, surprise
Yeah surprise, surprise, surprise
Well surprise, surprise, come on open your eyes

And let your love shine down

In the hollow of the evening, as you lay your head to rest
May the evening stars scatter a shining crown upon your breast
In the darkness of the morning, as the sky struggles to light
May the rising sun caress and bless your soul throughout your life

Well surprise, surprise, surprise
Yeah surprise, surprise, surprise
Well surprise, surprise, come on open your eyes
And let your love shine down

Well surprise, surprise, surprise
Yeah surprise, surprise, surprise
Well surprise, surprise, come on open your eyes
And let your love shine down (let your love shine down)
Let your love shine down (let your love shine down)
Let your love shine down

Surprise, surprise, come on open your eyes
And let your love shine down


Fifty-Three

Today's my 53rd birthday. "You don't look a day over 70." I heard that already a couple of times this week, and I had ...