they retired our jerseys rookie year December 27, 2008Posted by doug in important developments, radiant nostalgia.
this christmas — like many before it — was knee-deep in sweaters and pubescence. after presents and before dinner, i ducked out to walk the neighborhood; see who had moved, painted their house, planted a tree. i found no evidence for any, but took immediate notice of the sidewalk slab pictured above. i’d completely forgotten how, shortly after moving to town (1996?), my brother and i happened upon a wet cement square surrounded by a makeshift barrier of plastic tape and metal rods. naturally, i was immediately bent on defacing it. for some reason, ken wrote first. in the fading autumn light, he scrawled a respectable KB. when it was my turn, i took a more specific (and generally egocentric) approach: DJB.
but no, even with an extra initial, it wasn’t personal enough. if i was to take credit for this reckless act years down the line, it would have to be my full christian name. heady with excitement, nervousness or a combination of the two, i botched my first DOUG attempt, the O resembling a lowercase A and tightly crowding the U. i scrambled for a more suitable writing stone, sure nearby homeowners would soon catch us in the act — gray-handed, as it were. in the waning moments before fleeing the scene i carved a legible DOUG onto the extreme border and set off with my brother in a flurry of giggles self-satisfied grins. only weeks in the neighborhood, and we were already immortalized.
but seeing it a decade later, i’m left with the feeling that there must be some latent significant in that unsightly walkway. what does it say about my brother’s personality and of my own? a study of industrious efficiency versus haphazard trial-and-error? does it cross mature handiwork with infantile pretense? maybe it’s just a quality versus quantity issue. this was ’96 after all; precious few years before my father would indelibly dub me a ‘bullshit artist.’
a quibble with semantics December 20, 2008Posted by doug in important developments.
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yes, looks like a thick fog is setting in on the thought-maker. no, experts don’t expect it to lift. [not in the foreseeable future]
yes, that’s meant as an explanation. no, that’s not the same thing as an excuse.
most recent glimmers:
– business talk last week in el barrio over two packages of oreos
– wednesday night on kenmare*
– was rolled into an electronic mausoleum at columbia fMRI research center
– a growing fondness for bright, shiny ingestibles
– writing a letter entitled “for the record” that includes the words “deranged,” “hurt” and more than one expletive
it warms my heart and chills my hands to note the former (far) outweigh the latter. thoughts that recur like skips on a record, then stick to my ribs like greasy breakfast. and if they’re extinguished — though i doubt they will — they could only be smothered with an ornate, victorian-style candle snuffer.
and for the record, i think about this so many more times than it seems. probably 300:1. generously, at that.