Skip to main content


Reading Matt Zoller Seitz's remembrance of his wife, Jennifer, on the tenth anniversary of her death, filled me with a sense of dread, sadness and anxiety. Despite having read Matt's reviews on for years and being aware of the books he's written about director Wes Anderson, this was an aspect of his life of which I was unaware. I felt sadness for his loss, even though it is now a decade old. The dread and anxiety crept-in because such a read will invariably make one reflect on their own life situation and think, 'Oh no, what if it happens to me?!'

Ashley & I will have been together sixteen years this June. First and foremost: if anything ever happened to him, I would be devastated. Of that, there is no doubt. It's not something I dwell on, though I do think about it perhaps more than I should. Every time he drives to work, or even goes off to the store on his own, I hope he comes back. I've known people whose spouses have died in car accidents just driving around town.

There's always the health risks. Ashley seems in good shape, and I hope that holds for many years to come. I, on other hand, have high blood pressure, and have had cancer. My dad died at 52, and I am now 40. Here's hoping there's more than twelve years left in me. We never know the future. I could be gone tomorrow, or I could croak a week shy of my 101st birthday in 2076, just like my Grandma Callie. Happy topics, to be sure.

The one thing that gives me solace amidst the stress-inducing realization that life is very fragile, is that it is simply part of how the world works. Everything is temporary. I think we forget that sometimes. From relationships, to homes, to pets, to children, to health, to life itself -- there is no forever in all this. I mean, there might be an afterlife, but we don't know that for sure. For what we know now, on this earth, everything is transitory.

Dad died when I was 21 and, among the many thoughts that went through my head at the time, one of the most incredulous notions was how he'd been alive my entire life, and now he was gone. How do I deal with this?! Maternal grandmother Gummy went when I was 22, and the same thought occurred. Death, up to that point, had been an abstract concept. Sure, people died, but it was something that happened to others. This month, I have attended three visitations/funerals in a nine day span. So it goes.

There are friends whom I've played with as a boy, and whom I've known as a young man where they helped me find my way in the world, and now they're gone. Untimely deaths, all of them, either by accident or by their own hand. It makes me value the friends I do have left. One friend's death in particular hit very hard when I visited his remains at a mausoleum in Indiana. At one point in time, we'd been dancing, joking, arguing and laughing together. At a later point, I was staring at a wall that contained his ashes behind it. There was something that felt monumentally unfair about that moment.

So it goes with relationships. Some folks never have them. Others have several. Some are happy, some are not. A few have managed to find their one true person, and manage to luck out and live long, happy lives with them. Still, none of it is forever, as much as we wish it were. I feel more fortunate about my life than is possible to communicate. I was born into a comfortable existence, and have managed to find love, friendship and success along the way. It is all temporary, and I am grateful for it, nevertheless.


Popular posts from this blog


Ok, we're now three-fourths of the way through this year's calendar, so I thought I'd rank the thirty-eight 2017 movies I've seen so far.

Here they are....

1. A Quiet Passion
2. Baby Driver
3. Dunkirk
4. Get Out
5. Kedi
6. A Ghost Story
7. Wonder Woman
8. Columbus
9. Brad's Status
10. Marjorie Prime
11. Maudie
12. Logan
13. Spider-Man: Homecoming
14. Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2
15. Brigsby Bear
16. Atomic Blonde
17. The Big Sick
18. Split
19. Kong: Skull Island
20. It
21. Wind River
22. A Cure for Wellness
23. The Hitman's Bodyguard
24. Norman
25. Kingsman: The Golden Circle
26. Logan Lucky
27. Alien Covenant
28. Ghost In the Shell
29. War for the Planet of the Apes
30. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales
31. Life
32. Annabelle: Creation
33. Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets
34. My Cousin Rachel
35. Baywatch
36. The Bye Bye Man
37. mother!
38. It Comes at Night

It will be interesting to see what the last three months of the year brin…

The Best Superhero Movies of All-Time, Revisited

We are just a few days away from the North American release of Avengers:Infinity War. While I am dutifully going to see it opening night, it's not a film I'm looking forward to. It is (spoiler) part one of two, which means we can expect plenty of plot threads left dangling when the credits roll. In other words, part two will probably be better, and provide some actual resolution. Also, Thanos looks like a CGI yawn-fest. Hopefully, I'll be proved wrong.
Nevertheless, this is a good opportunity to rank (again) the major superhero movies (Marvel and otherwise) that we've had so far. As you know, I love making a list, and this one is going to be a definitive one! If you don't see a film on here, it's because I haven't seen it (the first two Thors, Iron Man 2, some of the X-Men features, etc.).   Alright, here we go.

Walk and Chew Gum

Yesterday marked a touchstone moment in the U.S., as students across the country participated in "walkouts." This was an occasion for students to express an array of thoughts and emotions, ranging from a desire for stricter gun control, to simply sorrow over the loss of so many of their peers to school shootings. They were peaceful protests, but protests nonetheless. Where you're at on the spectrum of agreeing or disagreeing with what they did may vary, though not wanting to get shot in your school seems pretty reasonable to me.
Some folks have taken to sharing a meme on social media platforms this week -- in direct anticipation and response to the walkouts -- that encourages students to "walk up, not out." Following are suggestions provided for the walk ups:

Walk UP to the kid who sits ALONE and ask him to join your groupWalk UP to the kid who never has a voluntary partner and offer to be hersWalk UP to your teachers and thank them!Walk UP to someone and JUST …