Thursday, October 28, 2010
Matches
Most days the days all run together. I preoccupy myself with the unimportant things in life. Things are mostly fine, except when they're not. Work is work, and the weather's always the weather. Tuesday's not much different from Friday. And January feels a lot like July.

But one day every once in a while, I'll gaze out over the water, to the other side of the river, and wonder about you. I know you're over there in a sea of people, alternately surrounding yourself with, then withdrawing from them into your precious solitude. Like I'm one to talk.

I want to know you're OK, but that some nights you still miss me so bad you whisper my name when you're in the dark. And other times, you cry my name out loud because you're angry still. Or maybe that's just me.

I could call, but I haven't any business trying to cross that bridge again. The last time that I tried, I almost drowned. You were on the other side with a can of gasoline and a freshly struck match.

But that was us, wasn't it? Always ready with a match, we both set fire to that bridge at least half a dozen times. Sometimes it seemed just for the sake of seeing how much damage we could do. Yet somehow it still stands. Or maybe it's no longer there. It's possible it's only in my mind.

I can't help that sometimes when I close my eyes, I still see yours, so deep and rich and dark -- caring, passionate and so completely vulnerable all at the same time. I'd get lost so easily in there and never want to find my way out. I remember how I'd know they were about to cry before a tear would fall. And most of the time, the tears were caused by me.

You were there for solace when I needed you, and you were trying hard. Then when I was ready to try, you were impossible to reach, at least for me. And so we went, back and forth. Maybe it was just a game we played -- one where even if you win, you lose. Or maybe I only threw away my matches when I knew you'd never cross that bridge again.

I remember mostly the good times now. That's just how I am, and it's a curse.

And so I remain on this side, where most days the days all run together. And I don't think about forevers.

But one day every once in a while, yesterday comes around. I think about how close we were, how far you are. I whisper your name. And I wonder if you ever think about us, the way we were when things were good.

You know, before we learned to play with matches.

"When you reach the part where the heartaches come, the hero would be me. But heroes often fail. And you won't read that book again, because the ending's just too hard to take..."

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Wednesday, October 20, 2010
Boys night out
I have a possible replacement for the Darryls.

I know, it's quick. But it's someone I've known for a couple of years. We hung out this weekend and I need to see what you guys think about him. (And by "you guys," I pretty much mean, "you girls plus Sage and Ed.")

OK, I can't keep up the suspense any longer. It's Nephew Bone.

We hung out Friday night for a couple of hours. It was BYOG. (Bring Your Own Goldfish.) Kicked it at my place for about thirty minutes. We banged around on some pots and pans and shot some Nerf basketball. Well I shot some, then held him up and he put the ball in. Over and over and over. After that, we hit the tizzown, got our eat on at Chic-Fil-A, then headed to Kywana's for a play date with the godson. I think we were both pretty wiped by the time I dropped him off at grandma's at 9.

Anyway, what I have prepared for you today is a rudimentary pro/con list of how hanging out with Nephew Bone compares to hanging out with the Darryls. First, we'll look at some pros for Nephew Bone:

Nephew Bone brings his own snacks. (See aforementioned BYOG.) The Darryls sometimes did -- Wolfgang moreso than LJ -- but not always.

Girls think Nephew Bone is cuter. And I must agree. And really, do I need any other reason than this? (I promise I never thought I would turn into one of those uncle bloggers.)

Nephew Bone always blows me kisses when I leave. The Darryls would never do this! At least, not sober. I was lucky if I got a "see ya later."

I'm entertained by every single thing Nephew Bone says or does. The Darryls? They were pretty entertaining, too. We'll call this one a wash.

OK, now for the cons:

Nephew Bone has a curfew. The Darryls never had a curfew. Well, not until Wolfgang got a girlfriend. Of course, a curfew could be a good thing if I'm really tired. At my age, I'm starting to adhere to the adage that "Nothing good can happen after sunset."

Nephew Bone doesn't play golf or have a pool table. However, he does have Legos.

Nephew Bone won't buy me a swimsuit calendar for Christmas. At least probably not for ten or fifteen years. (What? It's for a good cause! To help poor, needy, hard-working... Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders.)

Well, there you have it. Nephew Bone versus the Darryls. The data is in your hands. What you choose to do with it is up to you. But I gotta tell you, if this doesn't work, my only remaining option may be a long-term legally-recognized union, with a woman.

Or trying to meet new people. Perish the thought.

"Every day a new discovery. I'm a child again looking through your eyes. With every step you're teaching me how to fall and cry, get up and smile..."

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Sunday, October 03, 2010
A wedding and a funeral
The Darryls have passed away.

Time of death was around 2:15, Saturday, September 25th. That's when the onset of wedded bliss stole the last gasps of air from Independent Wolfgang. Though honestly, Independent Wolfgang had been on life support for quite awhile. I mean he hadn't played golf since the spring, for crying out loud.

And without two Darryls, you really have no Darryls. It'd be like Bert with no Ernie, pancakes with no syrup, B.J. with no The Bear. Maybe that's why LJ didn't show up for the wedding. He claimed he had to work. But I wouldn't be surprised if it was all just too much to handle.

So RIP Darryls. It's the end of an era, and thus closes an entertaining, if occasionally disturbing, chapter of my life. But this is not my misty-water-colored-memories ode to the Darryls post. Oh no, that will come later, after a period of mourning. Besides, like I (would have) said in my wedding toast (had they asked me to make one), "This too shall pass."

In the end, I wasn't asked to be a groomsman -- there were no groomsmen. But I did attend, largely because the chapel was about three minutes from my place. And since I know many of you were deeply concerned about me possibly having to miss the Bama/Arkansas game, I have prepared a rudimentary timeline for you of the day's events:

1:45 PM - Arrive at chapel, see Wolfgang outside, pose for picture. What? No, I'm not family. Apparently I wasn't supposed to be in that picture.

1:47 PM - Enter wrong door. There were girls in dresses in there. What were they doing? I don't know. I heard giggling. Were they laughing at me? Hard to say. Close door.

1:48 PM - Find correct door. Enter and take seat near the back and at the end of the pew in case a quick exit becomes necessary.

1:50 PM - Have espn.com's gamecast pulled up on my Blackberry ready to go. I thought headphones would be too obvious. Seriously rethinking that right about now.

1:59 PM - I began to grow fidgety. When is this thing going to start? Why do weddings always start late?

2:00 PM - Music starts. Ah, that's what I'm talking about. Let's get this show on the road and get this poor bastard married off.

2:09 PM - Why is the unity candle song always so long? Everything is done, then the couple are standing there awkwardly for two-and-a-half minutes waiting for the song to end. All you're really doing is giving both of them time to rethink their decision. I mean, how long does it take to light three candles? Fifteen seconds. They should play Taps. That would be about the right length.

2:14 PM - I think about the parking lot. If someone has me blocked in there will be a crime committed today. Probably more than one.

2:20 PM - I do! And the congregation shouted "Hallelujah!" Or just I shouted, with my inside voice.

2:22 PM - What's this? The preacher is making some kind of announcement. The bride and groom will be back in a few minutes? In the meantime, entertain yourselves? OK, that's it, I'm outta here!

2:23 PM - Crap, here they come.

2:28 PM - Thinking I still have time to get some wedding cake, I work my way towards the reception area, and manage to nonchalantly break into the cake line, in front of the flower girls.

2:33 PM - Shake hands with Wolfgang. Wave goodbye to the bride. Simultaneously.

2:38 PM - Get home, turn on the TV, which I had purposely left on CBS in order to save precious seconds.

2:39 PM - They haven't kicked off yet! Vern Lundquist's face never looked so beautiful.

2:40 PM - 6:00 PM - A constant state of anxiety, interspersed with outbursts of cursing, table-banging, and brief moments of relief. (You'd think I was the one getting married.)

So to recap: Wolfgang got married. I was there -- for a little while. My coffee table is still in tact. And the Darryls are dead.

At least I have Nick Saban to console me on a weekly basis.

"Another chapter of my life its over. No, I'm never gonna feel like that again. Time's rushin' by me like the wind. Never be as young as I was then..."

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