Wednesday, March 29, 2006


       While  walking the dogs, they stopped at their favorite tree to irrigate it. I  happened to look up and notice a kite dangling from a low branch. The tail hung down just low enough for me to be able to reach it and release it from its capativity. Instaneously, I was reminded of the many Sunday afternoons that I would fly a kite with my sons. Watching the kite  soar and float so high against  a clear blue sky was always a joyous sight to behold. We would  for an afternoon, and as the winds would let up, the kite would become a victim of branch.  The kite would always be torn beyond repair.Its not that the tree acted in malice, it just happened to be there.
    I held this kite observing its unreversible damage, and suddenly I was overcome with a whole other mind wandered back to a time and place that is rarely frequented.......
   I was in my Senior year in High School, it was a Friday and my friends had arranged for a beach blanket night party near Coney Island Beach. Six guys packed in car, headed off to the beach with a giutar, blankets, a pack of cigarettes, lighter fluid to set a beach fire and a bunch of dreams about meeting some new babe!  One of the guys in our group had asked his cousin from a distant neighborhood, to bring her girfriends to the beach, the thought of meeting new faces was exciting!
    We found our spot at the beach, and set up camp. Once the fire was going strong, out came the guitar, the cigarettes and then the songs...."Puff The Magic Dragon", "Blowing In The Wind", "Catch the Wind" , "California Dreamin'.".....As the guys began "pairing off with the girls" I decided it was time to take a solo walk along the shorline and commune with Mother Nature. The slow rolling of waves, the scent of the night mixed with the cool ocean was the perfect partner for me. On my way back to blanket, I passed by a lifeguard chair. A soft voice called down "Hi There!" I returned the greeting and asked how the view was from up there. "Come on up and see for yourself" she politely invited me. I climbed up, sat down and introduced myself. There was no moon that night, I sat up there in  a shroud od darkness. "You sing pretty good" she said. "Oh, so you're with the group?" I asked.. "yes, I came with them, not sure why, the way they carry on.....I guess I just didn't want to be alone tonight".  From there the conversation opened up, we talked about the pressures of being High School seniors, she told me that she went through High School not having a boyfriend and the effect it had on her.We spoke of the  hurts that are inflicted upon us without others even knowing. "Marc, you seem like a really nice guy, I feel like I know you....I hope you don't mind.....could you put your arm around me?"  "SURE!" I said as bells whistles sirens and alarms went off in my head. She slid over and tucked herself beneath my arm and we continued talking. A few minutes into our conversation a girls voice called out from below "Hey Ivy, c'mon down we're all going over to Nathans for a bite to eat...the guys will meet us there, so you two lovebirds can continue there!"...
    She climbed down from the stand, I still could not make out her features in the darkened night. "How will I know how to find her?" I thought. I quickly climbed down and headed over to the car where my friends were waiting for me. They all looked at me with smirks...they broke out in song.."going to the chapel and we're gonna get married".......I defended my honor with..."hey guys, I was 5 minutes away from having one hand up her puff that in  your magic dragon".....The drive to Nathans was 5 minutes, but all the while I wondered....what does she look like...who is this sweet girl that is so inviting?
    We parked the car, hopped out and strutted by the eatery looking for the girls. "Marc!"..I heard a voice call out..I stopped, I recognized the voice, it was hers, I turned around and saw many faces..."Marc, hi its me, Ivy"....She was short and very, very pudgy, a rounded freckled face, and red curly hair. Nothing close to what I imagined, and physically speaking, no chemistry. My friends pulled behind..."oh, its the bride!" they chimed. I smiled at her....said "Hi....don't pay any attention to them, combined have an IQ of my age....Now, how about a Nathans Hot dog!"  We found a table sat down and continued to talk. We talked about the Viet nam war, she asked what I would do if I was drafted. We talked about horoscopes, first pets, and favorite TV shows. In the time it took to eat a hot dog, we got to know each other so well. "Time to go" her friend announced. She looked at me and mentioned that this one one of the best nights she has had and then asked if she would see me again.I knew she lived very far from me, and seeing her again was unlikely.
 I asked for her phone number, she wrote it on a mustard and coke stained napkin. "Call me please" she said....and then got up and left with her friends. I placed the napkin in my pocket.
   I never did call her again....but held onto that napkin.....I knew that napkin represented a hope, a dream......and I just could not trash it.
   Our dreams are born out darkness,  like kites, they float high above sky, soaring above our fears and beyond the shadows cast upon us.......but, dreams are like kites, they eventually fall.......only to find their way, getting caught by a tree, torn and becoming lifeless........holding only the joy that sailed in them!

Sunday, March 26, 2006

First Kiss

.......Prior to that kiss, there was a dark history....(this was an previous entry of mine Dec.2004).....

....skating back in time I can recall that tender age of 13. I first noticed girls batting their eylids at me, calling my name cutely, and teased me for attention. I was naive in noticing that it was "nature calling". When the time came for my first kiss, I was too shy and clumbsy to live up to her expectations!.......Word quickly spread, I was a terrible kisser!  At 13, there are no second chances!!  My reputation preceded my boyhood charm and good looks! The girls on the block had turned stone cold on me! I was devastated...and for the next few years, I avoided being placed in a close up puckering position. (aww)

    I watched T.V. shows and movies carefully.....I studied how James Bond would lock lips with his leading ladies....Gregory Peck, Cary Grant, Kirk Douglas...I watched them all, and observed. Through this careful observation I discovered that kissing was not just about lips being locked together, but it was the  intimate formation two souls, using the lips as a conduit for their passion. The passion of two souls!

    Many years passed, and in one night, the phobia was laid to rest, as I fell into the eyes of another and she whispered the words into my ear..."oh Marc, where did you ever learn to kiss like that?"

If heaven was ever to touch Earth, this was the night!

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Do You Want To Know A Secret

     On any given night there are two hearts that are destined for each other. However, they are well contained and concealed from each others reach. Only the secret words, "I love You", can release them.
      These simple and magical words will release them! They  will burst from their area of confinement, race into each other, grabbing hold and dance in the rain of joy, tapping in the puddles of their passion, splashing droplets of magic in every direction! 
(Continuing.."Harbor of the Heart" entry ..2/23/06)
    Spring came that year, we shared that Spanish 101 class for five weeks. While my heart was on my sleeve, hers was well concealed. I had no idea how she felt about me, if anything at all.
    A party celebrating Spring was made, and we attended. At midnight, people began filing out, leaving just her, me, and another couple. "Lets go for a bite" suggested my friend.."I feel like something in Chinatown". We quickly agreed and were in  his car heading for downtown N.Y.C.
    We made it to the downtown area, the car radio playing the loveable sing along oldies. We drove along the riverside, the imposing skyscrapers, softly lit, were like giant ornaments for the night sky....the water, softly reflecting the light of the moon.
   We were seated in the back, I at one side, and her staring out the car window on the other side.
   The  song by the Beatles, Do You Want To Know A Secret? came on, over the radio
"You'll never know how much I really love you
you'll never know how much I really care.
Listen (do-wa-do) do you want to know a secret?
do you promise not to tell?
...........................................I sat on my side of the car, a huge grin broke out on my face...."gee, if she only knew" my heart spun its awakening call......
my lips went in sync with the song....
"Ive known a secret for a week or two,
nobody knows just we too, listen
I turned to face her.....and behold..she was facing me with a sweet smile and was singing...our eyes unison
"do you want to know a secret
do you promise not to tell
I'm in love with you"...... was followed with the softest yet most powerful kiss that I had ever come to known in my short life.....
Now, many years later I cannot even recall what occured the remainder of that evening.....I just know a part of my heart was left behind beneath a moonlight night, and in the tune of a Beatle song that liberated it!
Sweet liberations to the hearts that silently wait....your turn will come!  ....

Monday, March 20, 2006

Faith Interrupted

   When death, serious illness, and news of crumbling relationships resonate in my ears, my complete and unyielding faith in the warm hand of the Almighty becomes interrupted.  Once again, I turn and look for a clue...could there even be one? Why are our hearts allowed to fall to the ground and shatter as if they were made of fine porcelain. Can the Creator of worlds and time be so occupied and  removed from us?   And so I muse......
    As  my sons were growing up, they looked up to me for all sorts of answers, especially to their homework assignments!  When my youngest was 12, he saw me as a natural wealth of quick information.
    One night he came to me and said in a half whine..."Dad, I need help with my math homework...I really don't understand the problems."  ..... I always enjoyed being engaged and challenged...after all, eighth grade math was my calling!  " we go....if x+4 =8, we'll move the x to this side, subtract that side...."  and to his relief, I unraveled this dark mystery for him . He was never amazed at my swift calculations, after all, I was Dad, I was supposed to know!
    Imagine my amazement when he came home from school the next day and waved the homework assignment in my face..."Look Dad, an "F"....all of YOUR answers were wrong! I can't believe it "F"....!!
    My mouth fell to the open position and stayed frozen that way. Aside from the disbelief that I had incorrectly answered every question, was the fact that I let my son down..way down!  After rereading the questions that were asked, I understood that my approach to his assignment was all wrong, but that did not matter now. I asked him how much this assignment meant to the grade for the period. "Well, I was running a B-, but with this F, I'll be lucky to get a "C" for a grade.Now what do you suggest?"
   I had never let my son down like I had at that moment. There was no fixing this, I couldn't explain to the teacher that Dad was doing his sons homework and failed to properly follow instructions. I just looked at my son and explained that he would now need to work extrahard,. He would need to be  better prepared for tests and do some extra credit work.  "You mean I have to do all that extra hard work because you couldn't do my homework right?"
     A parent is supposed to have the answers, it is the  problem solver, the parent is supposed to make the hurt go is  not supposed to be the source of it.
    The world spins on an axis which we have no control over. The sun rises and sets each day keeping things on this planet in perfect running order. We trust this amazing feat of mechanical awesomeness is in good hands. So when our lives are pulled away from us like a rug being pulled from beneath out feet, we are plunged into a deeper depth of darkness, as if our parent has abandoned if our parent gave us all the wrong answers on a homework assignment!
  It now becomes our job, to work harder. we must now pull ourselves together.
It is now time to believe, hope and trust...more than ever before.
To all my friends here in J-land who have recently lost loved ones, to those who have loved ones battling a serious or life threatening illness, to those struggling in family matters, to all of those who face face despair as if it were a permanent fixture in their day.....The Parent does not have all the answers, and to believe so only allows for a faith interrupted.
My prayers of a return and restoration to a peaceful soul~~~Marc

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

The Guest Towel

Regarding my last entry, "License To Love", I have received a few comments and e-mails provoking me to realize that while we all have a license to love, we are often guilty of malpractice!  So...I offer up to you the other side ..........     
                                          THE GUEST TOWEL
    You have just spent four wonderful days in a very plush hotel. Everything about this hotel resonates with the ultimate in comfort. The silk sheets, the thick carpeting, the scent of fresh linen and lilac permeating the air, right down to the very plush guest towels, this hotel is PLUSH!
    It is time to start packing, you have just washed your face the creamy kiwi cucumber soap and now begin to pat your skin with the plush guest towel. "This place is heaven" you sigh to yourself. "I just wish I could take a piece of this with me". You stare at the  plush guest towel in your hands, "this will do!" and you toss it into your suitcase which is lying open on the bed. Your conscience rebels! "Hey! That's not right, thats stealing!...Now go hang that towel back up on the rack!".... You pause, you want that guest towel, you feel it belongs to you. You counter your conscience "Hey, with what I am paying for each day here....they should give me a towel!....Besides..In a place this big, who will ever notice one little guest towel is missing?"  You have just steamrolled your sense of morals with your own handpicked zip up the suitcase, and this matter  is closed.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------          Our hearts are like that plush hotel. They offer the greatest comfort known to man....Love. How foolish we are, to come into this Hotel and take what we feel belongs to us and then excuse ourselves with our own sense of logic!
  How unfortunate for the Hotel owner, who is faced with replacing those guest towels over and over again and leaving himself to wonder.."have I charged too high a price for someone to come here?"
Looking for that soft and fluffy pillow..........Marc :)

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

License To Love

          Imagine you are in need of a heart operation! In walks the surgeon, it's Harrison Ford! You gasp, "Harrison Ford?    You're not a heart surgeon.   What are you doing here?"..Smiling with his charming grin,    "Oh, but I did play a Dr. in the movie,  The Fugitive,  I think I will do just fine!"
          Your roof has a leak, you call a roofer and Tim Allen shows up (Home Improvement)....While you are delighted to meet him...he's not the one you'll hire to fix your roof!
.......License!.....Yes, when it comes to matters that affects our health and the roof over our heads...we want to see a license. It shows us that we are in the hands of an "authority"....someone that really knows how to do the job right!
   What about Love?  We meet strangers, and as they pass our sets of criteria we allow ourselves to open our hearts to them. No license necessary, "here, you have won me over with the right look, the right words and the right touch, here's my heart!      It almost sounds too foolish to be true!
     Upon closer scrutiny I realized, that when our hearts want something so much, when the needs of the heart  is so strong, it will overlook the details that line the path to the object of its' this case, Love!  The place, the time, the circumstance are of little importance, just the fact that we  reached that highpoint of all we think about. In other words, the license to love and be loved by someone, is overlooked....we don't need credentials!
     I asked "why not?"....We want our Heart Dr. to have credentials, we want our roofer and plumber to have them...why not a stranger we allow in our heart?
      I thought of myself, who walks with an open heart and allows entrance to whoever holds a ticket of kindness. Then it occurred to me, there is a license to love. We all have one,it was given to us by our Creator (God if you wish)..Our hearts have been preset to respond to kindness and caring. They have been treated with a sensitivity towards truth, trust and sincerity. As long as we sense these long proven elements, a license to love hangs proudly in our hearts! The other  details..are small. looks like all you lovely J-Landers are Drs!

Thursday, March 9, 2006

Mistress Of Betrayal

       The year was 1992. Everyone was sporting a pager (beeper) on their wasitline or  had one attached to their pocketbook. I had resisted this accouterment which let one know that they had to stop whatever it was they were doing and head for a phone. Finally, I could no longer hold onto a simpler world, and I purchased one. I had barely remembered my new number and which button to press, when my wife presented me with her wish for her upcoming birthday, a cell phone!
     Back then, cell phones were reserved for professionals on the move. Most of the models were the size of bricks and the monthly plans were like second mortgages. She told me that Motorola had come out with a new smaller version..a "flip phone". It still did not convince me why a stay at home mom who had a pager, now needed a cell phone. My resistance to her wishes were met with a similar response that a child makes when being told he cannot have a toy he asked for. In my retreat, a wave of suspicion came creeping in! "Why is she so insistant on having a device that will allow her to make calls on the go?". The "Columbo" part of my brain began working overtime. It held any insignificant data it could find and incriminatd her in the court of my mind. "She must be flirting with someone!" I concluded. Yes, I did not forget the smiles and winks she flashed at other coaches when we were at the little league games. Suspicion had now formed a lynching party.
       Her birthday approached, and I caved in, taking her to Cicuit City to purchase this cell phone. Back then, there was only one choice, there were no sleek Nokias, Ericsons, or Color screen Samsungs....just one Motorola model and just one plan.  Eighty bucks a month for 30 minutes of talk time! If you spoke for 10 seconds, that was your minute. Once you went over 30 minutes, you were charged.  Her happiness at holding the phone at the store was something unequalled. Again alarms went off in my mind. I half grinned at the salesman, and agreed it was a  sale. She kissed me on the cheek and then wandered off to muse at the other electronics as I woefully signed a 3 year contract. I smiled at the saleperson, "shouldn't we have a man of the cloth here, this is not a contract, it's more like a vow!"
      The salesman chuckled and then began to make another pitch, "would you like to purchase insurance for this phone?"  I gave him a cold "No". "Would you like roadside assistance plan?". "No"...."Would you like an extra minute plan?"..No"...."Would you like a payment protection plan in case you get sick and can't pay for the phone?"...."No"..."would you like detailed billing?"..... My tongue went deep into my cheek..."detailed billing?, please explain" I said.  "O.k., detailed billing will give you a list of all the outgoing phone calls that have been made on this phone. The list will be a part of your monthly statement and costs just 5 bucks a month".   My mouth fell open, a silent "halleluhah" rolled off my lips. My suspicions as to why she has to have this device  could be confirmed!  "Put it on, I'll take it, yes...I think that is a wonderful option to have!"
I signed the contract, folded it in my pocket and took the shopping bag over to my wife who was admiring the TVs...."here you are" I said with with the widest of grins.."Happy Birthday". We both exited the store with big wide  grins.
      A month had passed and the day came when the first statement arrived. I made no mention of it and put the bill  away for a private review. Night decended and she soon fell asleep. I went into another room to open this document which would, as I presumed, confirm my suspicions. My eyes ran down the lines, my brain assimilating the numbers called .....I quickly noticed a pattern of the same numbers. I mutterred the number repeatedly under my stuttering breath. Yes, now I recall! That was the number of my friend!  Blood raced through my head.."I can't believe it, I can't believe it!" my mind reeled. The "Columbo" part of my brain was summoned...."let's see...all of these calls ...lasted, this is obviously his pager number"...."and...lets see what happens after he is paged....well now, look at that, an incoming call being returned within minutes of being oh my, he is faithful as a puppy!"
My mind was now  cooked in boiling blood! "I can't believe my plan worked so stupid could she be!!"  .... "Now, where do I go from here?". Images of the two of them chatting on the phone, schemeing on  a place to meet played in my mind like a lage cinema movie!...I tried hard to calm myself, but to no avail. I tried reaching deep into my intellect, begging for it to gain control of my raging heart. "I must  think responsibly,  remember, there are kids involved...mine and his. And...I must be absoutely certain this is who I think it is" I told myself.
    It was late, I could not sleep, part of me wanted to go into the bedroom and throw ice water on her! I paced the living room floor, even the family dog became nervous.  I knew I needed to have some small piece of resolution before I could close my eyes. Then I recalled, a sheet that was being passed around the office...beeper codes. Callers would punch in certain numbers that would mean a message, for example,   "43" on a beeper meant "I love you"... I pulled the paper out of my briefcase....yes, there it was ..."143"  which meant "F*ck You"..... I picked up the phone and proceeded to dial the number that was on the bill..."heheh" I chuckled.."when he wakes up in the morning, he will see he has gained one new enemy this day!" At the promt, I hit the keys, it felt so therapeutic. I quietly crawled into bed, I marched in a parade of defeat and jubliation to sleep.
       Morning came, I showered and dressed,  made the boys breakfeast and packed their lunches, I was cold and indifferent, acting like  a vegetarian in a butcher shop. My mind too occupied, scheming  its next plan to catch these culprits. I poured my coffee to go, and went back to the bedroom to get my wallet, keys and pager. "Gee" she said to me, "you haven't said a word this morning, are you o.k.?"....I didn't answer, just slipped my wallet in my back pocket, my keys in my pocket and  slipped my pager on my belt...which had a message waiting for me...143!
    The "somewhat familar" number own pager #!
When the mind entertains suspicion and doubt, it will often find that mind becomes the mistress of betrayal!
Sleeping with both eyes closed.....Marc :)