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Friday, October 8, 2010


John Lennon would have been 70 years old today, were it not for an assassin's bullet. My father would have been 87 years old this month, were it not for the cancer that claimed him 25 years ago.

Thinking about these events is making me very angry today.  I got screwed out of a whole bunch of things that both of these men could have given me had they more time, and I'm not liking it at all.

My dad would have dug the internet, this blog even -- as an electrical and mechanical engineer he was into every bit of gadgetry he could get his mitts on. I recall when he bought a super sound system eons ago and decided that the acoustics in the house weren't good enough. So he conscripted every blanket out of my mother's linen closet and nailed them up on the living room walls, eventually forming a soundproof cocoon.

I happened upon him that afternoon, sitting on the couch, holding one of the blankets over his head in a half-shell form, listening to Beethoven's Ninth at the full capacity of his speaker system. "Sit here, sit here!" he said, and I was flabbergasted at how the makeshift arrangement made it seem as if the orchestra was in that very room.  The blankets came down later that day, but not before I'd conned my dad into playing one of my Beatles' albums full blast. Incidentally, he liked the Beatles, used to call them "the hairy ones."

I often think of how many such events I missed out on over the last quarter century since dad passed, just like today I'm thinking about all of the music that we missed out on, tunes that John would have banged out from that mind of his. I like to think I might have listened to some of those with my dad, perhaps not under a bunch of old blankets,  maybe in my living room this time.

Nobody told me there would be days like these. Strange days, indeed.

Amen, and pass the mustard.

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