Thursday, October 30, 2003

I just got home from the phenomenal evenings. Liberty just had the 2nd Annual Talent Show. The whole cast was great and the audience was wonderfully responsive. I did a standup routine. It's the closest I'm going to acting for the time being. I LOVED IT! My pacing was much better than last year and I even got our CEO on stage with me for a joke. I always wish I could write about everyday stuff and really give comedy a try. If I could be as good with regular material as I have been with company-based humor I wouldn't be at Liberty much longer. It gives me a taste of a life I wish I had.

But tomorrow it's back to normal. Ah, well. I would write more but I'm exhausted and I had a little whiskey for the first time since my surgery and my pillows are calling.

Monday, October 27, 2003

I was all excited on my way home. I had a great idea for a posting. It stayed with me through changing out of my good work clothes and chores I had to do around the house. I had it all outlined in my head; it flowed perfectly and made a wonderful point about a salient aspect of my life. Now, as I sit here I can't remember word one.

Is this part of being 40-something? I don't feel 40-something inside. I even call myself a"Toys R Us Kid" in the title of this blog. My father was the father of 4, Sergeant in the police department and homeowner by my age. JFK was running for president at 41. I still do my 12 year old son's Christmas shopping by getting stuff I'd want. I do, however, have a 401K account. When I told my mother I had started the account, she asked me for ID, to make sure I really was the Jack she had known.

I wonder if they'll have a Sponge Bob Squarepants horn for my walker when I hit my 90th birthday.

Sunday, October 26, 2003

Well, I'm doing as well as I did back in the 70's. I guess I didn't have much to write about anyway. Or the excuse that I was too busy. My job at Liberty keeps me very busy, then yesterday I had a Halloween party to go to immediately after work.

I made a major personal gaffe at work Saturday. There's a co-worker with whom I had been able to very freely joke with since she joined the company a few years ago. I even started up a Seinfeld/Newman slant to it in which all of the jokes started taking a personal/ranking twist. I took it too far yesterday. I had thought it was an understood thing between us that this was OK. When I dropped my last joke she quickly told me how hurt she was and to get as far away from her as possible. While she may have been able to avoid such a drastic moment by telling me this had been bothering for a while, I was devastated by how what I always saw as the fun side of my personality could have a dark side. I really like her, enjoy working and working so well with her, and treasure the friendship we have developed. I almost ran out of the building to get a plant and card to apologize. Within an hour it was over and forgiven; however the affect of it has lingered.

I had flashbacks to my second wife. We had met in the early 80's when I was a DJ at her favorite country radio station. She is younger than me and at that time was still a kid. I began the same kind of joking I had with my co-worker. Over the next 10 years we developed a strong friendship, went through some bad relationships, eventually found each other romantically, married, had a son and divorced. As my co-worker asked me to remove myself from the planet I could clearly hear the same sentiment, almost the same words, echo back from my ex-wife.

Growing up I had asthma, glasses and was generally considered a geek. Thanks to parents with a great sense of humor I learned to use comedy to defend myself. I am a huge Kennedy buff and learned that they, and many strong, and large families would use biting sarcasm and humor as a way of strengthening their character and proving dominance over each other; an early version of the rap battles as seen in the movie "8 Mile". So, as I grew I honed this skill and got pretty damned good at, if I do say so myself.

Looks as if I missed one very important lesson. When and how to use that skill. My ex-wife was supposed to be my life mate, not someone over whom I was supposed to prove dominance. My co-worker was supposed to be a team member not someone against whom I needed to defend myself.

I'm glad I finally learned the difference. Luckily, it was before irreparable damage had been done to my relationship with my friend. Damned shame I hadn't learned it the first time around. This time I hope it sticks as I face the possibility of a new relationship in my life. Maybe old dogs can learn new tricks.

Friday, October 24, 2003

Hello! Welcome to my little corner of the universe. I have tried doing one of these a couple of times. Hopefully, this time around, I'll actually keep up with this and make entries on a regular basis. The last time I did that I was in Junior High School! Here goes nothing!

A quick synopsis of the past 41 years of my life. I am currently living in Florida. Having been drawn here from my native Rhode Island by the need to be close to my 12 year old son, Johnny. He is the pride of my life. Right now, due to many circumstances, I do not see him as much as I'd like, but we have a good relationship and do talk a lot of the telephone. Even without the constant contact since age three, he has some of my traits, a wicked sense of humor and we share many interests. OK, some of mine he just puts up with...just like I do with some of his. All of the things you hear about parenthood are true; it changes your life.

My life stared out a lot differently than I imagined. For many years I tried a radio career. I was not up for the WOLD life of moving up and down the dial, so that died out after about 12 years. I get the itch every once in a while to get back into it. However, right now I have a very good job with Liberty Medical Supply. (The medical supply company Wilford Brimley does ads for. I've met him...very cool little guy!) After 6 years of toiling on the telephone I have just gotten a supervisory job. If you know me, you're probably laughing at me being a boss. So do I sometimes. But it's working out well and I have the respect of the sales team I lead and my supervisors and management. That is very cool!

I also hold onto an old dream of being an actor. Hell, Danny Aiello didn't get started until he was just around my age! I've even had an actor friend of mine say I'd be a good character actor. Being in Florida, I'm very tempted to storm Orlando and try to get into voice over and cartoon acting. Old dreams die hard.

I look around my life often and wonder how I got to where I am. I have friends who are in the same boat financially and socially that I am. I also see friends who are where I imagined I should be by now. I sit here in a trailer park in Florida with my head spinning. I don't want to sound pessimistic, because that's something I've never been. My past 9 years here in Florida have been life changing for me. When I came down here, I lived in my car for almost two weeks. If I can survive that and move to where I am now then there isn't too much the fates or God can throw at me that can get me down.

As I write I hope to do a lot of what I did back in the 1970's with my little composition book. Get crap off my chest. Share events with whoever wants to read. Give you an idea what it's like to live life, maybe give you someone with whom you can relate. I might even make you laugh. Old dreams die hard!