death x< by emoticon

that or slow emoticon death might be the name of my next band if and when I ever figure out a way to add an extra eight hours to each day. Ben Franklin supposedly got so much done because he never needed to sleep — that would be awesome. Unfortunately my eyes burn and my brain hurts for the entire day if I get less than six hours of sleep the night before… life isn’t fair. But it could be worse, as Mel Brooks would say, it could be raining. 

Or it could still be winter, most of the way through April here in New England. I’ve given up on waiting for warm weather and gone ahead and scheduled a Welcome Spring barbecue for my coworkers, making sure to invite Spring itself (bcc:d, of course, as I didn’t want my coworkers to think I was crazy). Maybe it needs that formal invitation this year. I’ve promised tours on the half hour of the garden, compost pile and the “tree that never grows” (Japanese willow I planted when we moved in). I also went out on a whimsical limb and mentioned an interpretive performance piece under the tiki torches after dark, for which I have yet to line up anyone to actually perform. But really why worry? You put out tiki torches and these things just sort of happen. Either that or someone puts on some Jimmy Buffet and the party instantly becomes something you wish you weren’t associated with…

Which is kind of where I am with my band at the moment. But breaking up is so hard. It’s a bit embarrassing with the heartfelt emails and phone messages during work hours. I mean can I just say, “High Schoooooollll” in a super-effeminate sing-songy voice. No? I’m embarrassing you now? Sorry. Anyway, just diverging a bit musically from the band I think… my latest tune, PTSD, can be heard at It came to me while listening to a NPR story on a soldier battling the disorder… pretty unsettling story and the song tries to capture the spookiness, the injustice and the world-weariness of the whole situation.

Kids are doing great, learning to swim, which puts them a leg up on me. I got into an argument with an old friend (who shall remain nameless to avoid great shame) over an otherwise delicious bowl of white borcht soup (Teresa’s on Montague St. in Brooklyn Heights, still going strong) about whether or not buoyancy varied between people. I was arguing that I have trouble swimming because I’m really not buoyant at all. He was arguing with great disdain that I was making excuses, which might be true, but furthermore that the human body is 98% water and I was crazy to think that some people might be more buoyant than others. Well, boo-yaa: You have to scroll down a bit but you’ll find, my dear friend, in bold the numerous person-specific factors that affect their buoyancy, i.e. lung capacity, bone weight, body fat, will to live, how many Elton John albums they own, etc. Okay, I added the last two. Thank you, google!!

Isaac has moved into Sydney’s room with much fanfare and heralded by a painting of the bedroom walls a bright orange. More of a butternut squash color. Like sunset on a pumpkin. Not half as bad as that sounds. Which makes me think we should let the kids pick the colors for our room once we get around to painting that. Or maybe we shouldn’t push our luck. But Isaac is adjusting pretty well, although he’s making some sort of crying noise at this very moment, 1.5 hours after lights out. Ah, it’s endless…

I’ve started playing basketball with some coworkers after work. I desperately need the exercise, as evidenced by my gasping for breath in between plays, the dizziness, the overall weakness of each muscle called into action during the course of a game. Most everyone else is still in their 20s or early 30s, so right away I’m in trouble. Then the competition has been getting to level where you don’t get a charge called unless the guys actually knocks you to the ground. Which happened once, earning me big points and a charlie horse that lasted for 24 hours. I also failed to check the weather report before one game and ended up wearing jeans and the wool socks I wore to work for the game on a sunny 70-degree day. Now they were smart wool — yes, somehow, the same smart wool socks I bought before the Peace Corps, nearly 12 years ago! The miracle of Hannukah has nothing on these socks. Some candles burned for 8 nights? These socks have burned for 12 years, and never more than after that basketball game when they had to be peeled with a spackle knife off of my feet. I’ve since taken to packing a backpack with actual gym clothes… including white socks, which to my surprise I did find that I own, probably from a brief bout of jogging last summer.

Ah, but I’ve bored you enough with tales of soup and socks and a lesson on human buoyancy. Believe it or not I’ve spared you from even less interesting tales from the past few weeks: the hiding of the milk on April Fools day (I almost cried), the flat tire on I-95 (I did cry, because it was a brand new tire) and my hits of the ’80s sing-a-along on the latenight drive back from New York in a horrible rainstorm. Carribean Queen should be stricken from the resumes of all involved, I believe. Not that I wasn’t singing that one too.

Until next time, I’m yours battling the emoticons,



About ericf73

A modern-day combination of Noah, Godot and Clark W. Griswold.
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2 Responses to death x< by emoticon

  1. Kirk says:

    That’s not a real emoticon in your header. (>_<)
    Maybe our buoyancies may differ… You're still looking for excuses! 9(X.X)9

    And this is an Emo kid. (///.-)


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