Print Story The email I keep meaning to send you.
Diary
By blixco (Wed Jan 24, 2007 at 03:10:21 AM EST) (all tags)
The replies you send me, they'll count toward your final grade.


Boomtimes, Busted.

My dearest,

The strongest impulse to make reality change into some sort of "choose your own adventure" has settled into the core of my spine.  I spend much of my slack-jawed time during the day whistling long-lost tunes, and realizing that there aren't any chances to do it over.  And realize how much of the road has gone under my feet with nary a glance off to the side.  My own dumb instincts making me vulnerable to the least likely emotions, I became so self-centered that you, and everyone around you, ceased to exist.

My grandmother's youngest sister, a woman three years older than my father, was diagnosed with lung cancer a year and a half ago.  Couple of weeks ago, she finds out that it is back, in both lungs, and this time it's personal.  She's refusing chemo, or any sort of treatment really.  And I can't think of a worse way to go, drowning in your own body.

My father is an only child.  When my grandfather was in korea, my father and grandmother lived with her family.  He thought of his aunt Linda as his sister, since they were so close in age, and they were as alike as two people can be.  She helped him get through his years in the backwoods of Virginia, years without a father and with a mother who watched, hawk-like, over her only child.

My father has been on a mortality trip for years and years, but only recently quit smoking cigars.   If smoking gives certain bloodlines cancer, well....

So my head is stuck well in to this tar pit nonsense as my family fights to keep their spirit intact while yet another of the old ladies who made our lives possible drops from cancer.  And I can't get completely away from the idea that maybe I should be there, with my grandmother, as she loses another sister to this invisible assassin.

I paraphrase one of my favorite writers, then: the world is hardest of grandmothers.  My grandfather is an old war horse, a teamster, a gigantic man with nazi shrapnel in his body.  His time's been, and he's smiling with the Lord during his remaining days.  But my grandmother, who has often been abandoned by her husband while he dragged off to fight wars or haul cargo, she has always had her family.

And now they're slipping away, brutally.

And here I am.  One little pinpoint in this office three floors above wet winter streets, the slow hiss of the HVAC driving the tone of my relentless day.  Data don't rest, and those of us who herd it from point A to sections A B and C cannot possibly take a moment for humanity to catch up.  So I divorce my Self from my hands and let the world slip by while I ponder, singularly.

This is my way of dealing with a world that mechanically goes on about it's business.  People die.  Some of them, we love dearly.  Some of them, they die in ways too lonely and awful to mention.

They leave the world behind, doing the clockwork thing, counting the ticks till we join the soil ourselves.

Not that it is pointless.  Or hopeless.  It is, though, consuming.

And it is OK, I guess, to have been so self-consumed that I hardly remembered to drop you a line.  Neglect is a sign of friendship; we long for the people we should have in our lives.  Problems never neglect us.  Only those things we love.

I hope this finds you well.  I am well, despite the tone and finality of my language.  We can't ever take one thread to mean the whole tapestry.

Sincerely,
jason

< Last Christmas, I gave you some stuff | BBC White season: 'Rivers of Blood' >
The email I keep meaning to send you. | 17 comments (17 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback
Cancer is what gets you by wiredog (4.00 / 1) #1 Wed Jan 24, 2007 at 03:20:27 AM EST
if nothing else does. At least grandma is going out with her mind intact. Both of mine went from strokes. One of them (the whack job no one in the family could stand, not the cool one everyone loved) took 10 years, and many small strokes, to die.

Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

My grandmother by blixco (2.00 / 0) #2 Wed Jan 24, 2007 at 03:23:57 AM EST
had a small stroke...one of those mini-strokes...and though her speaking is still a bit slurred and her balance is a bit off, she's recovered well.

She's had bladder cancer, as well, and every checkup is a cross-your-fingers or pray thing, and every checkup is clean.

My grandmother is, well, she's as tough as my grandfather.  But in a very different way.  I joke about him being hard to kill (Germans, North Koreans, and one very nasty truck accident that broke his back in three places), but I have a feeling that she's just as tough.

It's just sad to see her slowly becoming the only sister left.  I can't imagine that, so I try my best not to.
---------------------------------
I accidentally had a conversation in italian at lunchtime. I don't speak italian. - Merekat

[ Parent ]
A thing I realized last fall by wiredog (4.00 / 1) #3 Wed Jan 24, 2007 at 03:35:56 AM EST
Most of the people in my parents generation are dying off. My Dad is 78. Aunts and uncles (if alive) all in their 70's. Friends parents starting to die off.

Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

[ Parent ]
VS2FP. by Breaker (4.00 / 2) #4 Wed Jan 24, 2007 at 04:45:11 AM EST
Very expressive.


<SIGH> nt by Phage (4.00 / 1) #5 Wed Jan 24, 2007 at 04:51:23 AM EST


you know, by Kellnerin (4.00 / 1) #6 Wed Jan 24, 2007 at 05:28:44 AM EST
the other day, seriously, just the other day, I was thinking about emailing you. Not that I had anything in particular to say. I guess, I was just planning to say,

"Hi. How are you?"

But I didn't actually do it, not until now. Hi.

--
"If a tree is impetuous in the woods, does it make a sound?" -- aethucyn

The title by blixco (4.00 / 1) #7 Wed Jan 24, 2007 at 06:41:09 AM EST
was intended for you.  I'd started to send you a PM about how i didn't do a WFC entry because of a million little cuts, but I ended up scrapping it and writing this, which has little to do with that, but still.
---------------------------------
I accidentally had a conversation in italian at lunchtime. I don't speak italian. - Merekat
[ Parent ]
I fail it by Kellnerin (4.00 / 1) #12 Wed Jan 24, 2007 at 08:29:02 AM EST
A food WFC that you don't enter is a crime. A crime!! I'll probably beat myself up about this more later and elsewhere, but though I think that interesting things come out of having to work within limits, and especially under time constraints, that really doesn't mesh well with the Real Life thing. Apologies about that. If I'm ever allowed to run another WFC, the deadline will be: "Whenever blixco PMs me to say he's submitted, or 3 weeks, whichever comes second."

--
"If a tree is impetuous in the woods, does it make a sound?" -- aethucyn
[ Parent ]
Well, by blixco (2.00 / 0) #13 Wed Jan 24, 2007 at 09:35:28 AM EST
I don't know that there would be a decent deadline.  The last MFC happened purely by accident for me, a fluke.

My co-worker and friend Gabe is moving to Colorado in April, so my life is going to be stupid for about six months.

But in that I will hopefully find tie to make the WFC up, write some random fiction regardless of intent.
---------------------------------
I accidentally had a conversation in italian at lunchtime. I don't speak italian. - Merekat

[ Parent ]
Well well, by Kellnerin (4.00 / 1) #15 Wed Jan 24, 2007 at 10:03:58 AM EST
I'm sorry about your friend's imminent move. But life is often stupid, in various ways.

I'm going to hold you to that last comment. That is, if it doesn't happen after a while, I'm going to start randomly inserting links to it everywhere.

--
"If a tree is impetuous in the woods, does it make a sound?" -- aethucyn

[ Parent ]
Hi by ammoniacal (4.00 / 4) #8 Wed Jan 24, 2007 at 07:17:20 AM EST
I'm conducting a domestic Covert Op today.

I'm hiding the Guinea Pigs from the Landlord. Don't rat me out.

"To this day that was the most bullshit caesar salad I have every experienced..." - triggerfinger

Good luck on the CovOp by wiredog (4.00 / 4) #9 Wed Jan 24, 2007 at 07:39:51 AM EST
Are you wearing the Black Ninja Suit Of Doom?

Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

[ Parent ]
Fuck the MAN! by wiredog (4.00 / 4) #10 Wed Jan 24, 2007 at 07:45:53 AM EST
Malcolm X didn't take a bullet so that you could get hassled by the landlord!

Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

[ Parent ]
I suggest the vegetable crisper by georgeha (4.00 / 7) #11 Wed Jan 24, 2007 at 08:02:36 AM EST
the cold air will slow down their metabolism, they can nosh on the greens, and it's easy to wipe clean.


[ Parent ]
Tape Them To Your Face by blixco (4.00 / 4) #14 Wed Jan 24, 2007 at 09:36:16 AM EST
and speak like a deranged Scot.
---------------------------------
I accidentally had a conversation in italian at lunchtime. I don't speak italian. - Merekat
[ Parent ]
There are other kinds? by mrgoat (4.00 / 4) #16 Wed Jan 24, 2007 at 10:09:29 AM EST


--top hat--
[ Parent ]
In the words of one of my favorite actors by debacle (4.00 / 2) #17 Wed Jan 24, 2007 at 11:25:59 AM EST
Who's close friend happened to die of cancer, "Always look on the bright side of life."

IF YOU HAVE TWO FIRLES THOROWNF MONEY ART SUOCIDE GIRLS STRIPPER HPW CAN YPUS :OSE?!?!?!?(elcevisides).

The email I keep meaning to send you. | 17 comments (17 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback