Archive for the 'Family' Category

On Fathers’ Day

My dad passed away on October 23, 2000.  I mourned my father. I still miss my father. I miss him more some days than others. I can go a day without thinking of him at all, even. I loved him. But I’ve healed.

Still, beginning around June 1, the advertisements for Fathers’ Day start rolling in. Buy Dad this, get Dad that, spend money!! I admit I get a bit offended that they assume everyone has/still has a father, although I don’t really expect they could caveat it. Still, email subjects like “What are you getting Dad this year?,” make me kind of mad.

Anyway, I”m getting away from the point of what I wanted to post here. I wanted to post a few things that my dad said to me that I think about a lot. Not all of it is sage life advice or anything, just things I remember. So in no particular order here are some things my Daddy said:

1) “Try to get a job in your field.” –This is actually what he said to me as I was walking out the door of my home in Pennsylvania and getting on a plane to move to Austin, TX.  I’m not exactly sure that my dad was thrilled that I’d decided to major in English. And when he died, I didn’t have a job in my field. I was an assistant manager at Blockbuster. But I knew what I loved, and I got there eventually. I think he’d be proud of me.

2) “Always assume the other drivers are going to do the stupidest thing possible and you’ll never be surprised on the road.” –I can’t even tell you how many times this piece of advice has helped me to avoid an accident.

3) “Who is that knocking on my timber palace door?” –This is a game my Daddy and I used to play when I was little and he was in his den or office. I would knock on the door.  He would say that, and I would have to say “It is I, Princess Lori.” And then he’d open the door. It was ours, and it was special.

4) “Did your mother say it was OK?” This is why they were good parents. But he was always the softie, that’s for sure.

5) “I hope if you meet a nice boy you’ll at least bring him over so I can meet him.” I never brought him a boy. That makes me sad.

6) “I love you, kid.”


Living with My Brother, Part 1: Living with an Artist

My brother is an artist. He is passionate and driven to create. He does all sorts of things, but I love his glass mosaics.  You should check out his facebook page.


Now, appreciating art and living with an artist are two very different things, or so I have been discovering.  Let’s talk about some of the things that I have learned about living with one:

1) Sometimes he’s not going to talk to you.

I get home from work and park my car next to his. I gather my things and walk inside. The house feels empty but I know he’s  here somewhere.  Walking farther into the house, I can hear moody music coming from my brother’s studio. “Ah,” I think, “still working.” Now this is the chancey part. Do I go up there? If it’s been a good day for art, I’ll walk past the studio and he’ll invite me in and show me what he’s done and we’ll chat. But if it hasn’t… Well, I have to walk past to get to my bedroom to drop off my shoes anyway. With trepidation, I climb the staircase. The door is open, I hear Radiohead and smell grout. “Hey, I’m home,” I say as I just barely peek my head inside his studio space. “Hey,” he grunts, and then he immediately begins singing along with the dulcet, tortured tones of Thom Yorke, head bent over the glass grinder. I shrug and move to my 3rd story bedroom. It’s going to be a solitary night.

2) Most of the time he’s not going to listen to you.

Me: “Right, so the landlord is coming to mow the lawn on Monday; we need to make sure the lawn is dog poo free. Mom wants you to go over on Tuesday and clean out her bathroom fan.  Tonight I’m not going to be home because I’m going out to dinner with Meg, so don’t save any dinner for me.”

Him: “Sure, Ok. Fine. I’m posting some new pieces on the facebook page, you should check them out!”

Me: “Great, I will!  See you later then.”

Him: “Ok. Hey! Wait!  Is the landlord coming to mow the lawn soon?”

Me: …

3) Sometimes you just have to pretend to know what he’s talking about.

Me: “Wow, that’s a great piece. I really love the colors.”

Him: “Thanks! I thought it was a moving ethereal statement on the pathos of inner space and the way life hunches on its axis to to bring solitude. I wanted it to evoke a meaning that doesn’t really mean, you know. It just wants to be something.”

Me: “Yes, it’s perfect.”

4) Don’t get attached to the placement of anything in your house.

I have discovered that when my brother gets bored he rearranges things. Now, I’m not saying he doesn’t have the touch. He’s one of those people that can group seemingly unrelated objects into something you just want to sit and look at. And the house looks better than it did when it was just me living in it, no doubt. There is art and eclectic knick-knacks everywhere. There are actually more than 2 forks in the house too, but that’s another post.

The thing is, you just can’t get used to anything. Once I walked in the door from work and dropped my purse on the table in the mudroom. Only, I heard a thud and looked down to see my purse on the floor. No table. Table was in the living room, looking fabulous, with an arrangement of family photos and a vase of hydrangeas.

Or there was the time that I left the living room for an hour, came back and none of the stuff on the walls was where it had been. So instead of looking in the mirror I was looking at a lovely drawing of a bird…which didn’t help me to see if I had anything between my teeth.

I”m still looking for knives in the wrong drawer, and he re-arranged the kitchen months ago.

But hey, life is supposed to be an adventure, right?

We’ve only been sharing a house since April, so I’m sure there will be more to add.

Are you an artist? Do you live with an artist? What has been your experience with sharing living space in general?


A blog about my life and other stuff.

Oh, life is a glorious cycle of song,
A medley of extemporanea;
And love is a thing that can never go wrong;
And I am Marie of Romania.

Dorothy Parker, Not So Deep as a Well (1937)