Saturday, August 04, 2007

Look At The Machine And Cry

I once sat with my dad watching a documentary about Jim Jones, cult leader extraordinaire. We were at the part where old Jimmy was selling monkeys door to door when my daddy said, Man, I do not think you could get away with that kind of shit today. I agreed, although sometimes kids tried to sell odd stuff -- homemade dog collars came to mind as one of the strangest recent offerings. I, of course, had one even though I had no dog -- the collars looked so lonely and pathetic that I knew I was sunk from the moment I opened the door to the teeny-tiny urchins and their wares. I'm a notorious soft touch; I get this from my dad. I did not get one ounce of his mechanical ability or patience for figuring things out. If something went wrong with a machine, my dad would deduce from a number of possibilities what it might be and fix it. I, on the other hand, look at the machine and cry, beg it to go back to the way it used to be, when things were working, when things were easy. This, surprisingly, has not yielded the results I have desired.

So it's been a long haul without him, three years to the day. A kind person to the core, his favorite gesture was the thumbs up (as opposed to my favorite which some of you might be able to discern without too much effort) and his harshest admonishment was That's not nice. In many ways, I'm not all that recognizable as his daughter -- a person prone to nervousness and fear over everything, worried about my death since the time I knew what it was. But he never worried, merely said he wanted to go out with a bang. And he did, of course, a plane crash in which, I hope, he didn't suffer. One can never know. But I do know that I'll think of him always, especially when I end up buying something I don't need from someone who needs to sell it, knowing it's the right thing to do, that I can always give whatever I don't want away. I'm just hoping that nobody comes to my door with any pet monkeys.

Michelle's Spell of the Day
"Love takes off masks that we fear we cannot live without and know we cannot live within." James Baldwin

Cocktail Hour
Drinking music suggestion: Mellow Gold Beck

Benedictions and Maledictions
Happy Saturday!


Patton said...

Nice tank picture. I used to buy R&D for the M1 Main Battle Tank. We got it so it could go under water, shoot down a jet plane and survive a nuclear, chemical or biological war. In short, it could do everything but fly--and we were working on that!

the walking man said...

It doesn't get easier missing ones we loved to the core of our being after they have gone does it?

I guess the best we can do is remember the good times with fondness and be glad that we were able to know them at all.

If your father was your opposite I bet he would have been a hoot to know, you're a hoot to know but a different kind of hoot to boot.

Your favorite gesture and mine are no different and his ability to figure out the most likely cause of a breakdown is something he and I share.

But I am sure my methodology is quite different than his was, and unlike you I don't cry and hope that it will go back the way it was ,I swear at it like a motherfucker on a rampage then force it to bend to my will. That and 30k worth of tools does it every time.

And uhhhh as far as the dog collar goes, I am sure you can find someone to re-gift it to, which i am fairly certain is a trait all females get from their mother.

and remember "For God has not given us a spirit of fear but of peace and love and the power to overcome the things of this world"

That includes fearing your own death.

Great peace to you on this day of remembrance Michelle.



paul said...



Tim said...

That kind of anniversary isn't something we look forward to each year. If it's any comfort, the pain of loss does get a little better as time goes by,even though the memories of our loved ones stay with us always.
Homemade dog collars huh? You have a soft squishy heart Michelle. :)
Take care,

John Ricci said...

Dear Michelle
I hope that God's grace and Mary's compassion are with you on this and other days of tragedy. Know that your are truly beloved by many. Lovely post and view as always and of course a sad Bravo.

JR's Thumbprints said...

Remember all those special times you two had together; Reflect on that. And yeah, you're right, it doesn't get any easier as the years roll by. We can't dwell on what's missing, only on what was and what is. Sorry for not making any sense ... it's been one of those kind of days.

Dan said...

I, on the other hand, look at the machine and cry, beg it to go back to the way it used to be

LOL! Very funny Michelle!

I'm so sorry about your dad Sweetie. It's very tough. I lost mine just before Christmas and I'm going through all the holidays, one by one, without him. I'm hoping that the first occurrence of each holiday is always the most painful, that it will only get better. But like you, I'll always think of him.

I'm giving you a warm hug right now. Hugs and love Michelle.

Charles Gramlich said...

A moving tribute to your father. Sounds like he was a great guy.

eric313 said...

Great post. You are just as you say you are and more.