It looks like it's that time of year again. The Anderson brothers are having their mustache growing contest again, I've noticed that more and more I'm waking up cold, and the mad scramble has begun for me to figure out what I'm going to do with myself for the holidays. And who with.
I use the term 'mad scramble' loosely. What it really is is the holiday coming and going with plans on my part being neither made nor executed. There are living relatives who live in the area, yet they remain elusive in the final quarter of these last few years. If we were honest with each other, it kinda bums me out. It's not a secret to any of my friends that I don't look forward to the holiday season since my parents died. I've managed, however, to keep it in some box that's defined by the absence of my mom and dad. There's actually more to it than that.
But the season isn't here to bum and I'm not here to blog anything bummy. My long lost cousin Shelley invited my up to her pad in Washington state. And I'm off on the 14th. And I'm excited about it. And it's with family. Cousin Shelley was always very sweet and identified with my mom (who's name was Michelle. Michelle, Shelley.). I remember my mom once bleached her upper lip when Shelley was too young, in her mom's mind, to wax. Pointless anecdote, except for the fact that my mom and she had a slightly conspiratorial relationship and mom was creative on her behalf.
Shelley used to baby sit me when I was younger because she used to stay with us. And my mom and dad used to pay her pretty well, or at least it seemed to me to be pretty well. I saw an Aerosmith video as a young kid, and when I say young, I mean like 6 or seven and I was trying to describe who the video was by to her. She guessed Guns and Roses.
For 45 minutes, I thought 'Rag Doll' was by Guns and Roses. Again, it's a pointless anecdote, but these and other things are the beautiful impressions I have of a loving family member in my oh so happy youth. It reminds me of my parents to talk to Shelley again. I hope that during my visit, I'll not only have fond memories of the past, but a lovely time meeting her new family and getting closer to the woman she has become. And it's likely that my future self will be influenced positively by her present self the way my present self was influenced positively by her past self. You can't step into the same river twice.
Oh, and this morning I'm helping yet another one cheat on her term paper for college. Her identity will remain in confidence, but I'll let slip that she's angelic, an overachiever (maybe her eternal self will influence my temporal being to yada yada yada...), and she just whipped up chorizo and eggs for me so I'll be heading over to the pawn shop pretty soon to get her a nice ring. She may be slightly coy, but everyone on the west coast knows that chorizo is the way to my heart.