Thursday, February 25, 2021

 Okay, so not such a great week. 

1. I got word that a former student of mine died. Actually, his whole family died. They were on the side of the road when a car struck them, killing him (16-years-old), his little brother, and his mother. He was a funny kid, had a certain star quality to him. And now him and his whole family are gone.

2. Then a friend of mine went missing. I guess he was at his girlfriend's place in the suburbs, came home, and then they had plans to go out to lunch near where he lives in Chicago later that day. Apparently he left his apartment and never came back. It is said that he liked to walk on the lake front, but it was freezing that day, like 17 degrees. 

As the days go by things look more and more grim. When he didn't show up to work on Monday morning I knew it was bad. I was holding out hope that he just turned his phone off and got the F' out of Dodge for the weekend, planning to return to work. Then with each day it's really looking more and more hopeless. I'm searching for scenarios where he is still alive. Maybe he dropped everything and became a Buddhist in a temple somewhere? Or maybe he just assumed a new identify in another country, but would he really just never talk to his father, sister, or girlfriend ever again? And wouldn't he have packed some things, and wouldn't there be records of travel or spending?

The other possibilities are just too sad to think about. It could have been foul play, like maybe a robbery went wrong. And sadly, it could be that he took his own life. But in either case, how has his body not been found?

I saw my good friend who is pretty much best friends with the missing guy on the local news, and my heart just sunk. It's just so real to me after seeing that. When you have stuff like that going on, you still go into work, come home and take care of your family, and life just goes on. But then seeing that it's on the news, my friend is pleading for someone to come forward with information, his sister is talking about how it just doesn't make sense, how they knew something was wrong when he missed his weekly phone call with his father, it's all just so damn sad and such a mystery. 

Everybody get out and live your life. You never know when your number is going to come up or you'll be a part of a real life damn "Unsolved Mystery." This thing is nuts, you guys. Thanks for listening. 

Monday, February 22, 2021

Yesterday I was driving Erik Noisewater (age 4) to school and telling him about the dream I had. I said my recently departed Aunt Linda was in the dream, and she was young and beautiful. And I was so happy she was alive somehow. Then, of course, by the end of the dream I learned that she was dead after all. I told Erik that I was crying but couldn't remember if I was crying in the dream or while I was awake after it was over. He said, "But parents don't cry." I told him parents cry too. I said I hardly ever cry, and when I do I almost never do it in front of anyone - so he just hasn't seen me cry is all. Then I reminded him that he has seen his mother cry. To which he said, "Yeah she cries and you just go, 'I know! I know!'" 

Wow, the way he said that, the way he imitated my response to his mom crying - it was bad hearing that. There was an incident the other night and I was not exactly the most empathetic husband of all time. I don't want to make it seem like this is dinner every night at the Noisewater dining room table, but it happened. I think everyone is breaking down in these damn COVID times. It's tough. It's wearing on everyone. 

"I know! I know!"

What an asshole.

I'm going to be better. 

Saturday, February 20, 2021

 I'm watching all the Star Wars movies with my eldest of two sons, Erik. I was going to wait until he was a  little older to delve into the films because of some of the violence, like Obi Wan lopping that pig faced dude's arm clean off in A New Hope with blood everywhere, but the night of the Capitol insurrection I had a few to many coping drinks in me and just said to him, "You want to watch Star Wars instead of all this news?" He has a few Star Wars books and knows that we have not watched the films due to the violence so he capitalized on my moment of weakness and gave me an emphatic yes! 

Here are a couple of interesting thoughts Erik had about the movies:

1. "Fin and Rey. Those are both ocean names."

2. "Chebacca's hugs are soft.

3. When Erik gets pissed off and snaps and throws stuff and hits his little brother, I remind him that Kilo Ren does that sort of thing when he gives into the Dark Side and his fits of rage. He also ends up killing his own father, which I'm totally not cool with and make a point of drilling that into Erik as being a not-so-good thing to do.

So the other day when we are getting into the car in the morning, while Erik is crabby about God know what, I'm reminding him how he needs to take deep breaths so that he doesn't give into his anger like Kilo Ren, Erik says, "But Darth Vader uses the Dark Side, and he takes deep breaths." Damn it. He's got me. I tried to explain that Darth's sounds of deep breaths are the machines keeping him alive due to his injuries in the molten hot lava and not at all a coping skill to avoid angry outbursts, but I was tired in the morning, he had me, so I just said "Yeah. You got me there. Let's go to school,"