About Me

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I’m from New York but my driver’s license lists that my address is Ohio. My passport has a number of stamps in it. I’m the youngest of six, yet oldest son. I have a number after my initials, but not my name. I like music. I drink coffee at all times of the day. I am a follower of Jesus. I own my own business. I watch bonus features on DVD’s. For four months each year my wife and I are the same age. “I pledge allegiance to a country without borders, without politicians.” I am an ordained pastor. I’ve eaten raw horse meat. I’m fifteen inches taller than my wife, but I look up to her. I still prefer buying CDs to downloading music. I’m a night owl, who doesn’t mind getting up early. I like to shop, and my wife doesn’t. I like to play games. I moved to another country nine days after my wedding. I sometimes quote random lyrics. I believe in miracles. I prefer desktops to laptops. I like listening to audio books. I listen to hockey games on the internet. I have five sons. I'm living life mid sentence.

Thursday, August 26, 2004

Alone I Wait

How much longer can I go on with this loneliness in my soul? No matter how hard I try I cannot overlook the longing I have to have someone to spend time with, someone to share the important, and not so important, happenings of my life with. But month after month goes by and alone I remain. Is this my ultimate calling or has this loneliness been given to me to prepare me for something that is yet to come? Can one go for weeks and months without any physical touch and yet survive? I long for a warm embrace, a pat on the back, a caring gesture but alone I wilt as life seems to drain out my every pore. As the last ounces of my spirit seems to disappear a sliver of hope remains that maybe someday, somewhere, someone will come and bring the sparkle back to my eye and the joy back into my existance.

Friday, August 20, 2004

In Heaven

There will be no more tears.
No missed opportunities.
No snow days.
No muscle aches.
No flat tires.
No burned toast.
No deadlines.
No rain delays.
No heartache.
No allergies.
No doubts.
No headaches.
No regrets.
No debt.
No cold feet.
No bitterness.
No hunger.
And, no CNN.

Two Men Remembered

They were men of strong beliefs. Men who seemed to have it all. Two men with different past but similar looking futures. One grew up in a broken home in western New York, the other in a happy home in southern California. One was athletic, the other was not. Both started off small in stature. One looked to the military as a way of escape, the other escaped from the spotlight to join the military. Both men knew what they wanted and were willing to do what it took to achieve it. One of them had dreams of the Special Forces; the other was a member of the elite group. To those around them, both seemed to put their country above self. One served with honor in the Gulf War while the other with honor in the War on Terror. But as time went on, one of them began to feel disenfranchised by society, while the other continued to be held in high regard. One began to remove himself from society, while the other embraced life with arms wide open. One started to question the government and was not able to find answers. The other left few answers for the many who questioned him. They were two different men that met the same fate by different means. One was killed by an enemy of America. The other was killed for being an enemy of America. One considered life to be worth defending. The other considered it worth taking. Pat Tillman will be remembered as an American hero who gave up fame and fortune to defend his country, while Timothy McVeigh will be remembered as the one who sought fame by murdering 168 innocent victims in the Oklahoma City bombing.

Give Me My Equality

Over my life time issues of equal rights for woman have dominated the news headlines. Woman have demand equal rights in the work place, as well as in positions of authority. They have fought for the right to fight along side men in the military and for the right to earn the same wages that men do. They have held rallies telling woman to stand up and show the world that they are in every way equals of their male counterparts. But today is the day I plant my feet on solid ground and begin to fight back for my rights. Woman today say they want to be equals with men but that is only when they want something that they do not have. They do not, in other words, wish to share some of their rights with men. Let me explain. Women have fought for the rights of woman to be able to play on the PGA tour, but I am sure they would deny a man’s request to join them in their LPGA events. They demand access, for female journalist, to professional sports locker rooms, but would be offended if a man sought to enter their quarters. It is considered normal for woman to cry at sentimental movies but if a man cries he is considered weak. Women drool over Brad Pitt and Enrique Iglesias but if a male in their presence dares to take a second glance at J.Lo or Keira Knightley he is labeled a sexist. If a man makes a passing sexual innuendo towards a woman he is liable to be slapped with a harassment lawsuit but when a woman makes a similar comment towards a man she gets away with saying that she was “merely flirting.” Women demand flowers and cards for fictitious holidays; Sweetest Day, Secretaries Week, or Valentines Day to name a few, but consider it to be absurd when a man asks for a bouquet for similar occasions. Women are considered to be courageous if they seek the profession of being a nurse but when a man works in the same occupation he is asked if he failed out of medical school. And God forbid a man try and apply to work at Hooters or Victoria Secret. He will be shot down faster than America rejected the 8-track tape. But this is the day I take my stand. I stand here and proclaim that equality is equality. I want my chance to play golf with the women. I want the men’s locker room to be off limits for woman, or women’s doors opened up for male journalist. I want the right to cry at movies that touch me. I want to right to talk about my celebrity crushes. I want the right to flirt without fear. I want flowers for holidays. I want men who choose to be nurses to be honored and not ridiculed. And I want the right to work at Victoria’s Secret. After all, isn’t this what all of my rambling's have been building towards?

Life Without Regrets

It amazes me how spending $15.99 on a form of entertainment can change ones life. Well, it has and my life is the one that has taken a turn. I went against my better judgment of renting a movie before buying it and took the advice of an acquaintance that convinced me that a new movie was "absolutely amazing." Their recommendation persuaded me and I made a trip to the store and bought a copy of the film. It then preceded to sit on my desk collecting dust for a period of time until one night I decided to see if it could possibly live up to all its hype. Two-hours and five minutes later as I sat with tear stains on my face I realized that I need to make changes in my life. I realized that I had filled my life with good things, at the expense of what truly matters. And unlike those who reach the end of their lives with regrets of things that they hadn't done or hadn't learned I became determined to do that day what I had put off for more than twenty-six years. My pen could hardly keep up with thoughts as I frantically jotted down the questions to ask and feelings to share as countless emotions began to flood my mind. Determined not to let a day go by without taking action I purposed that, that day would be the day I faced what I had grown to fear the most. My past. Doubts of rejection or finding out more than I could handle began to overwhelm me but visions of regret kept me focused on my mission. As I sat at my desk an awkward feeling came over me as I pulled out a clean sheet of paper and began to pen the words "Dear Dad..."

Wal-Mart At Its Sexiest

Who ever knew that browsing the shelves of a video store could add so much laughter to ones life? Well, I surely didn't know until this evening. As I often do on a night off of work, tonight I stopped by the local "Family Video" in hopes of finding something that would catch my eye. Well, that didn't take long on this particular occasion. No, I didn't find something that I was going to rent, but I found a DVD title that was so out there that I didn't know if the correct response should be a simple "wow" or if I should just burst out in laughter. The DVD that caught my eye was: "Playboy: Woman of Wal-Mart." Maybe I'm wrong but I'm guessing that the genius that thought up the idea probably was looking for a new employer soon after (and I doubt Wal-Mart was interested in hiring him). Not that I condone pornography, but if you are looking for a video idea that would be a guaranteed seller I think it would probably be something like, Playboy: Woman of Victoria Secret, or Playboy: Woman of Abercrombie (wait, that wouldn't have to take off much to make that transition) or even in a stretch your imagination a little, Playboy: Woman of Starbucks (you have to admit that there is nothing quite as sexy as a woman who knows how to make a Caramel Macchiato). But Woman of Wal-Mart? At first I thought it was absurd. Then I thought it was gross. But maybe it is only my area where all of the Wal-Mart employees are either 85 years old or they are twice their recommended weight. Since I am not a subscriber to Playboy and since I had not heard of this scheme I was curious what kind of reaction the "moral conscientious" Wal-Mart executes had to Mr. Hefner's most recent actions. After searching the title in a popular internet search engine I found that several journalists perceived the same humor as I did over the whole idea. Afraid that I would see more than I should I did not click on any of the links but some of the more humorous titles to online articles were: "Woman of Wal-Mart, Roll Back Your Clothes", "Playboy Looks To Capitalize on Wal-Mart’s Best Assets" and "Playboy to pay a selected few Wal-Mart employees a decent wage." I'm not sure if investors in Playboy saw an increase in the value of their stock after the release of the video, but I do know that the title of the film alone was enough to brighten my prosaic life.

@!$# Yuppies!!!

I’d always seen yuppies as people with no identities who had fallen prey to the corporate world. They always dressed the same, walked the same and had the same hair cut. As I would see one walking down the street no doubt would be left in my mind that they had been bitten by the “yuppie bug” as they flashed the half smug/half smirk expression to those of us who dared to make eye contact. As they approached their freshly waxed sedans they would wipe off the small smudge mark that somehow had appeared on their vehicle in their absence. I must admit that I was always amazed at how they were able to carry a brief case, designer coffee and the Wall-Street Journal all at once without it slowing their stride or messing up their pristine look. I also admit that on several occasions I joined in as my friends laughed at them and I always swore off assertions that I would fall prey to their cookie cutter lifestyle. But recently I noticed that my mockery was lowered to a mere mumble as most of our differences seem to have faded. Then one recent event made me realize that what I had sworn off had become reality in my own life. Just last week as I walked out of a bookstore/coffee shop reading my New York Times and sipping my soy latte I realized that I had become the focal point of the laughter. Two teenagers, enjoying the last drag on their cigarettes, sat on the curb and as I passed by they mumbled comments as their snickering became audible. As I continued on towards my new Honda I couldn’t help but smile at how not so long ago I had been in their shoes and the realization hit me that they too will soon follow in my footsteps just as the next generation of naysayer will follow in their path.

And The Souther Girls....

Even though I still proudly don my favorite baseball team's cap I think one Yankee has had a change of heart. Upon my entrance into the Deep South this week I have fallen in love with the women, the atmosphere and the weather. While Christmas wouldn't be quite the same without a little snow, I believe for the women and atmosphere I would forego the holiday spirit settings. After all, isn’t a Christmas tree is still a Christmas tree even if it has palm leaves instead of pine needles? But getting back to the southern belles, what more can I say? I stand corrected for all those times that I insisted that "our northern girls could stand toe to toe with anything the South could put out." While I haven't spoken to any this week, and speaking only in superficial terms, I am ready to hand in my resignation up north and make the transition to Lee's country. And as for atmosphere? Let’s just say I walked into a Target today to find a Starbucks! That’s what I call heaven. Then after leaving Target, I noticed that there was a traditional Starbucks across the street located next to a popular bookstore chain that had a, you guessed it, Starbucks inside. What skid roe is to alcoholics, Route 280 in Birmingham, Alabama is to this caffeine feign. And while they currently remain the store display that is out of reach but not out of sight, I finally am willing to share the key to this cold hearted individual: A southern accent goes a long way in melting the ice that has built up around my soul.

Sunday, August 15, 2004

Never On

It use to be a time to look forward to. A time where friends shared the minuscule happenings of the day, but in such a way that they seemed almost... enchanting. They were like a page out of a biography that disclosed only a portion of the soul, but when added together, revealed the whole being. Where else could trips to a market or acquision of "that new item" seem to draw the reader in eagerly anticipating every minute detail? Or the times where nothing of importance were shared but having someone there to share it with was enough to induce a smile. Those times may be fleeting but the "Remember when's...." still linger and continue to deliver fond memories.

Double JD Please!!

At times things seem to go along without a thought and then all of a sudden you come to a point that you start to think about more than just the menial day-to-day happenings of life. This evening was one of those times. Maybe I am just restless. Maybe it is the change of seasons. Maybe it is loneliness. I love my job, I get along with those around me, but something seems to be lacking. I could fill my time up so I wouldn't have time to think about anything else, but at the end of the day when you lay your head on the pillow all the things that are so important during the day slip away all that is left is what we try our hardest to avoid. But what other option do I have? So I lie awake pondering the things I've come to fear the most until the ever elusive sleep overtakes me.