I remember in little league baseball we would sit in the dugout eating M&M's. Probably why we never won so many games. We would say that if you ate a yellow one before you batted, you would hit a double. If you ate an orange one, you would get a triple. And if you ate a green one, you'd hit a homerun. (There were no reds and blues in the early 1980's.)
I went to the funeral home for a bit last night. Amber's grandfather passed away, so I stopped by the visitation for a minute. I have written only a small bit about my grandparents. I want to write more at some point. My Mom's mother died in 1992. She was my last living grandparent. Even today, I can pick up the telephone and dial her number. I don't know why I can still remember it. I would like to think that means that maybe I called her quite a bit. I hope so, but it's hard to remember.
My Dad's mom passed away when I was 12 or 13, I think. Dad was her only child. Meanwhile, Mom had eleven brothers and sisters. So we spent holidays with Mom's side of the family. I vividly remember Thanksgivings when Dad and I would leave the family gathering and take a plate of food to his Mom. She would just be there all alone on the holiday, get to see us for ten minutes maybe. It tears me up so bad to think about that now. Being a kid, I didn't think about it then. I am so sorry. I remember Dad would go and get her and bring her over on Christmas Eve day and she'd always have my sister and I these gifts that we'd have to pretend to like. How horrible is that! Her only two grandchildren. I hate this story. She probably died of loneliness.
I have heard friends complain about their grandparents from time to time. I always try to tell them what I wish someone had told me. Maybe someone did and I just didn't listen. That's probably what happened. Cherish your time with them. With all your loved ones. Going to see them or calling them may seem like such a chore sometimes. But there will come a day when you would give anything to be able to visit them. At least that's how it is for me.
Anyway, when I got back from the funeral home, my sister called. She told me that a boy who was a year ahead of me in school had put a bullet thru his head. I never knew him much. We played little league baseball together. My sister wanted to know what makes a person do that? I wondered how do you go from hoping for a green M&M to life being too hard? In twenty years. I think that one of the best parts of being a child is the innocence, being sheltered for a little while from what can be such a cruel world. Once the innocence is ripped away, reality sets in. And I guess sometimes, for some people, reality can be way too much to handle.
Then I wake up this morning to see that Gilligan died. Boy, Skipper, cancer really is a rotten thing.
"And Papa said to Mama as he passed around the blackeyed peas, well Billy Joe never had a lick of sense, pass the biscuits, please..."