Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Thursday, July 30, 2009
Despite impressive job titles, elaborate business cards, spacious offices, pricey business suits, and a torrent of pressing responsibilities, small, large and sometimes imagined...
My primary vocation these past (gulp!) 32 years has not been a job that drew a pay check. Or had set hours. Or that I could neatly leave behind at the office.
Instead, my primary vocation, as well as passion, preoccupation, and obligation, has been parenting.
I always knew I wanted children. I had my first a few months shy of my 25th birthday. Now, as I approach year 58, my youngest celebrates her 18th birthday as she packs for college almost 3,000 miles from home. (See photo above of the historic residential college to which she has been assigned.)
My days as a first-line, hands-on parent are drawing to a close.
I'd like to say that I don't regret one single moment of parenthood, but the fact is that I made mistakes, and God knows, so did they.
But that's life. That's part of the journey. That's certainly part of the process of growing up for both parent and child. That, ultimately, is a great blessing.
Yes, I always knew I wanted children. I knew I was meant to parent. And after I'm gone from this life, my main legacy will be carried by and in my children. That's how it was meant to be for me. On a deep level, I've known that from a young age...
Now, I know from experience that parenting doesn't end when they leave for college... or become adults, or marry, or even have children. Trust me on this. :)
But when they leave home, parenting intrinsically changes. That, of course, is part of God's plan.
But I find myself wondering: what does God want me to do with all my new spare time? More writing? Finally, a book or two?
Or does He have another plan?
Sunday, July 05, 2009
Michael Jackson's persona was reminiscent of (or directly lifted from?) kabuki theater, which is a centuries-old, stylized form of traditional Japanese theater.
Think about it: kubuki theater is...
* performed by men elaborately costumed in kimino garb,
* wearing heavy layers of white-pallored, make-up,
* adorned by smooth, festooned black wigs,
* vocalizing in unnaturally high-pitched voices.
Kubuki stagings are strangely charismatic, yet incomprehensible on a linear level.
Credible media reports... if there are any at this point... paint the portrait of Michael Jackson, sans wigs, costumes and make-up, as a balding, long drug-addicted, near-skeletal old man with ailing eyesight, significant lung disfunction, and a startlingly scarred face.
What we saw was Michael Jackson as kubuki theater, buried in personal eccentricities. We barely saw his desperate drive to hide his heart or mind or soul. Despite his sins, he seemed, at core, to be a sweet, odd, naive guy just looking for love, like the rest of us.
The problem was... Michael Jackson's kubuki theater was so damned interesting and creative. And endlessly lucrative to assorted leeches.
Friday, May 29, 2009
Thursday, May 14, 2009
"My mother really thinks you're amazing."
Saturday, May 09, 2009
Monday, May 04, 2009
In fact, this delightfully bargain-basement horse, purchased by his owner for a mere $9,500, won the Derby convincingly by several lengths. And at the finsh, Mine That Bird was still widening the gap.
Sports Editor Phil Simms wrote at The Online Wire two days before the 2009 Derby:
"Mine That Bird needs to run a perfect race to beat the favored Kentucky Derby contenders thus his odds are worthy if you look for a huge payout.
Currently this horse is listed amongst the 4 biggest underdogs out of the 2009 Kentucky Derby odds at 50/1 and really deserves to be the biggest underdog considering how slow he’s ran in recent races."
Here's to you, Mine That Bird, from all of us who've been counted out, disregarded, or demeaned as slow, an underdog, unworthy...
Your victory lifts our spirits. You give us hope they we, too, can beat the odds... prove the critics and cynics wrong.... and leave the crowd cheering for more.
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
- one life as the perfect guy, loved by his wife, adored by his children, admired by the world as a golden boy-man, beaming with promise and good looks, intelligence and charm.
- a second, secret life crammed with repeated rebellions tailored to shock and hurt the people who love them.
These men break the hearts of the people who love them... people who never truly grasp the reasons for the golden man's painful, often heinous, betrayal.
Harsh reality reveals that we never really knew these men, Megan. Reality reveals that they craved an audience who believed in their goodness, but these men are incapable of returning mature love. Or of truth.
Move on, Megan. For your sake, forgive Philip, release your pain, and move on. Chalk your romance up to a close-call and a cautionary lesson well-learned.
You don't realize it yet, but this is the best day of your young life. Trust me on this.
(Photo of fiances Philip Markoff and Megan McAllister in happier times.)
Wednesday, April 15, 2009
Adam Lambert will be a big, big star, most likely in musical theater, but his appeal won't be limited to, or even include many, young, edgy music aficionados. Here's why...
He's a joyously Disney-fied version of glammed-up punk rock. He's David Bowie, but with fantastic singing skills. He's Elton John, but with style and fashion sense. He's Elvis but without the snarl and the fried peanut butter sandwiches.
He's a mannered young man with a choir boy's face from middle-class San Diego suburbs. He's the son, the nephew, the brother, who had talent too out-sized for desk-bound college study and proclivities too exotic for his confused, loving family.
He's the wanderer who arrives home for Thanksgiving with a black shock of hair, two new tattoos, Revlon eyeshadow, and armed with pumpkin pie and sweet hugs for all.
What I find refreshing about Adam Lambert is his openness and comfort with his identity. He's part of the new generation of young gay man who lack an angry chip on their shoulder and a desperate need to taunt with their sexuality.
Indeed, his 21st-century androgynous charisma is blend of the new and the moderately old, but his creative vibrancy as a musical performer is an American tradition that dates back to vaudeville.
Adam Lambert as the lead in "Jesus Christ, Superstar," anyone?