Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Why do I love her?

I've been thinking about this today. Seems like it should be a pretty obvious answer, but as I ponder the question, it becomes harder to articulate. She's got some points against her. 

  • she never says thank you
  • she tends to leave substances on my clothes
  • she doesn't understand, "mom's time for herself" time
  • she restricts my social life
  • she hurt A LOT coming out
  • she cries sometimes for no apparent reason
  • she can't carry on a decent conversation
  • she must be fed. even at night when I'm sleeping
  • she didn't come with a "pause" button
  • she passes gas, without discretion I might add, in public
So, why do I love her? Why can I look at her for hours at a time? Why do I love to wake her up in the morning? Why do I stoop to making ridiculous faces to get her to smile?

Because she is. Because she is harvest - she put skin on the love I have for Ben. She is part of me, but wholly other. She carries with her the hope of our families, the prayer we have for the future. I love her because she is ours, and so utterly lost without us. I love her with a deep compassion for someone totally unable to defend herself. I love her with the delight of watching a mystery wake up. I love her in awe. In her is the story, darkened with each telling, of beauty lost and desire twisted. In her is the echo of a Father's "come home," of a redemption paid dearly, for her. She is alive here because of my strength and will some day be strong for me. I love Addison because I can't not love her. 

definitely B

Chapter 3

And I did know. I knew many things. And I knew I wasn't about to stop seeing Frankie. You see, I was 12 and Italian and my name was Rosie and the world was not kind to my sort in Brooklyn in 1942. It became especially difficult when the playground found out about my irrational fear of the seam of the sea. Frankie was my friend, and my fighter, and not too shabby to look at either. 

It was Fall. We had started to wear coats to school in the morning, which we swung around like old-fashioned sling-shots in the warmer afternoon. The streets began to feel damp, and the night air smelled somehow cleaner. Frankie and I were walking home from school, discussing with a forced air of penance the recent beating Frankie had given like a benediction after the last bell of the day. I knew my father would be working on the car in the driveway, having just woken up after a long night with Mr. Lansky. We saw him as we approached the house. Frankie had turned to leave me, anxious not to be seen, when I said something I would later regret. . .

a.) "Frankie, have you ever thought about becoming a monk?"

b.) "Frankie, will you teach me how to swim?"

c.) "Frankie, would you fight whoever I asked you to?"

Monday, September 22, 2008

on a side note

I googled the meaning of my name. This is what I found.
Crystal means:
  • Ice
  • Earth Mineral or Brilliant Glass
  • Crystal (genius)
  • As clear as crystal
  • Clear, Bright
I find myself at the same place I started. What does your name mean?

option c

Chapter 2

I was 12 when I decided to do something about it. This state of affairs was getting no one anywhere. So I talked my father into joining the mob.

It was relatively easy. I fed him some spirited mumbo jumbo about "justice, honor and vengeance." Perhaps more compelling was the threat of death. I told him that Lansky, THE Lansky, was upset that I had taught his son how to pray the rosary and was going to send Murder Inc. after us if we didn't join. It was the 1940s. My father had enough trouble in Brooklyn being Italian. Deep inside, I think he was glad. He hadn't been in a good fight since Napoli. And I was elated to be nestled safely in the heart of the city, far away from the sucking waves at the shoreline.

"Rosie, " My father always punctuated my name with a twist of his moustache. "You still hanging around with that little Lansky? The Boss say we are swimming to Italy if his son becomes a priest." Turning his head to look at me straight, my father gave me the only piece of advice I ever heard from his lips, "You keep away from boys, Rosie. They'll gamble away your hairpins."

Well, I didn't want to stop hanging out with "Little Lansky." His name was Frankie and he was always getting into fights over me at lunch. Some freckled kid with a last name like Porter would call me some sort of name and then Frankie would call him something back and give him a swing to the jaw to remember it later. We would stop by the church on the way back from school and Frankie would confess his daily pounding. Secretly, I wished he would hold my hand.

"Rosie," (twist of the moustache) "Remember to pray for your stupid fear. No one can amount to much in this country afraid of stupid things."
"Yes, Papa."
"And don't hang out with the Little Lansky. I'm not stupid afraid like you but I can't swim to our Italy."
"Yes, Papa."
"You know I don't give my wisdom often."
"I know, Papa."

a) Finally, it was for the proctection offered and threatened by the mafia that I stopped seeing Frankie

b.) And I did know. I knew many things. And I knew I wasn't about to stop seeing Frankie

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

and now for a brief word from our sponsor. . .

For those of you wondering where all the beautiful pictures of Addison went, please divert your gaze to the right and click on the "Addison" link. We will try to keep it updated to your satisfaction.
the management

option wins

Chapter 1

I felt, back then, as useless as a left handed oyster. The world can be very unkind to a left handed oyster. They say. My father used to tell me, "Rosie, you can't be afraid of something stupid forever." And then he would raise his broad Italian shoulders in a sad shrug, as if he had already lived through forever and knew these sorts of things. You see, its bad enough being scared of the sea, Thalassophobia to be exact, but if your family works on a sailboat. . . its tragic. Maybe I should clarify. I loved the sea. Once we were out on the water, and the snap of the sail above cracked in the wind over salty waves, I was content. It was the shore line that terrified me. The space between the dock and the side of the boat made me so petrified I frequently lost my lunch on the spot. It was the transition, the seam of the sea and solid ground. I know this may sound ridiculous but try to understand. Have you never looked with even mild discomfort at the place where the escalator becomes the airport floor? Does your mind never skid to a horrified halt at the prospect of being SUCKED IN? If not, than you may have every right to think me barking mad.
I was a mess. And a shame to my family, so proud to be offering sightseeing tours to visitors of Sheepshead Bay in Brooklyn. As second generation imigrants, my parents were bursting with pride for their little sailboat that sped along the coastline of the New Jersey they loved. They tried to hide their embarrasment over their only child clinging to the planks of the family's slip.
I was 12 when I decided to do something about it. This state of affairs was getting no one anywhere. So I. . .

a.) hopped on the 4:55 train to Philadelphia, and from there to the only place I knew had no bodies of water.

b.) decided to try fear therapy. My therapist, ironically enough was Dr. Phish.

c.) talked my father into joining the mob.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Choose your Own Adventure #2

Ok. This was so great last time that I thought we could do it again. It works the same. You vote on the way you want the story to go and the most votes chooses the next segment of the adventure. I don't know where the story goes any more than you do until its written. So much fun. And this time, you get to vote on the first line!

a) I once shot a man's ear clean off.

b) When I was a girl I was convinced I was a mermaid, conch shells included.

c) I felt, back then, as useless as a left-handed oyster. The world can be very unkind to a left-handed oyster. They say.