Monday, November 29, 2010

Clearing the (hot) air

It's well past time to clear out the desk drawer, clean out the cupboard, empty the trash can, etc. etc. etc.

*I took a trip to up to Orlando to visit my half-sister for my Saturday after Thanksgiving Thanskgiving. First of all, I'd like to thank Arcade Fire for making my three-hour trip go by rather smoothly. I'm not good at long car drives. My back gets tight, as does my neck. My leg grows numb and uncomfortable, my throat gets dry, but that band made it all disappear.

*Signs that I'm no longer in librul South Florida. One: Signs off the road promoting Gator Jerky. Tempting, but no. I hear it is high in sodium. Two: Vultures. Real vultures devouring some carcass. Truly spooky. Three: Bumper stickers attacking the socialist dictator that is Barack Obama.

*My sister Karen is big into genealogy. She's tracked my family back to my great-grandparents on my father's side, almost getting to the Civil War era. Unfortunately, those rubes in the Azores and Ireland did not keep great records so that's where the search has stopped.

My dad's father, Harry Soares/Sears worked in construction in Providence and had two wives (who both died in child birth) before meeting my grandmother, Della Joyce. Having seen photos of my paternal grandmother, I was not surprised to learn she was popular with the men back in the day. She had five kids with Harry, my dad being the last one in 1932. My grandfather died a little more than a year after my dad war born.

Della Joyce died in 1984. I had no idea she was alive when I was born. My parents never talk about her. Apparently, she was a tough, Catholic woman who grew up in foster care, which back then was ten times worse than it is now.

*On the topic of grandparents, I remember my elementary school making us write essays about our grandparents every year. I also recall hating this because I never knew any of my grandparents and had to choose another random relative. So I was born in 1982. In 1984, my dad's mother died at age 83. The next year, my maternal grandfather died suddenly on Christmas Eve. My mom was pregnant at the time and gave birth two days later. In 1987, my mom's mother died on Christmas day, two months after my sister LeeAnne was born.

Obviously, I have little-to-hazy memories of my grandparents. Though some of my first memories is of the chaos surrounding my grandmother's death on Christmas. I may have been at the funeral. Very hazy. Still, years later, I hate my school for that grandparents' essay circus.

*My mother's family has Nova Scotia roots, so I'm a bit Canadian. Explains my adoration for Kiefer Sutherland.

*On Saturday I wanted to watch the entire Oklahoma-Oklahoma State game. I've gotten into college football this year more than in years past. The atmospheres at those games, even on TV, drip with intensity and/or insanity. Unfortunately, my evolution into an 80-year-old man is moving steadily along. I could not stay up past 9 p.m., and it was not the turkey. My work schedule has me going to bed before most grandparents.

*On the 'I'm secretly and 80-year-old man' topic, I'm noticing more muscle aches than ever before. I need to stretch before any sort of physical activity. Before playing basketball now, I feel the urge to put on 1980s shorts while wearing puffy white wrist bands and bad-ass goggles.

*It's one month before Christmas and I have no idea what to ask for. Something with Tom Brady's name on it? A blow-up doll? I need some ideas.

*Here's one. The lone rock radio station is no more. I turned to 93.1 the other day expecting some Nickleback and "52 minutes of rock" that somehow was always - and I mean ALWAYS - at commercial anytime I clicked in, only to find "White Christmas." In its place is a 24-hour Christmas song station. Station manager Jeff Schaible could not be reached for comment.

*Here in diverse, heavily over-populated South Florida, there is not ONE rock radio station on the FM dial. Very sad. I really do need to look into satellite radio.

*Speaking of my Thanksgiving, it was rather pathetic. I worked with one other guy for the most part in an empty, eerie office. If you watched the Pats-Lions game, you saw some of my handiwork. When they told you to vote for the Phil Simms' Iron Man of the game, I was the one who did the poll. Also, when they pointed you to our website to watch the Chris Henry feature (which was legitimately good), I was the one who created the package. I hope you noticed, but you were all probably watching Cranston East once again beat Cranston West. It's like Ohio State-Michigan now, in importance and in competition (or lackthereof).

*Then I went home and ate frozen pizza before taking a jog in a retirement community. A dream Thanksgiving if you ask me.

*Rolling Stone has been sending me their magazine for some reason. I did not subscribe, but I won't complain. They keep sending me warnings. This is your last issue! Then I receive the next one. OK, this is the last issue. Then another one. We really mean it this time! It's quite a game of chicken. Sooner or later, I will lose.

*Quality magazine. Matt Taibi is great. But are they contractually obligated to write glowing features on Robert Plant and Bruce Springsteen every issue? From reading this magazine, one would think these guys come out with an album a month. And Bruce could burp into a microphone and read a script from Outsourced and RS will call it the greatest rumination of American desolation and hopelessness since John Updike put pen to paper.

*Lastly, am I bad person if I look down upon people for the TV they watch? If you prefer Outsourced to 30 Rock, I'm sorry, but I will judge you for it. If you laugh uproariously to Mike & Molly but think Curb Your Enthusiasm sucks, then I will give you the credulous Sears squint of dissatisfaction. We all like a certain trashy TV show or two (I watched the entire first season of Joe Millionaire), but if all you watch is reality crap or staid sitcoms, my tortured, creative side will rain judgement down upon you.

It's a serious character flaw.

1 comment:

  1. I think you answered your Christmas question in this blog: satellite radio.