The Vivid, Shining, Warmth of Right this Fucking Now

We often promise to live life more fully, to stay in touch, to love one another more significantly as we gather for a friend’s funeral. A promise faded by life’s duties. Nearly dying myself created a sea change in me. Carpe Diem became not so much a shouted bravado but rather a quietly pulling current motivating everything I did from that day forward. Creating a richness I would have previously slept through in case something better might happen tomorrow. Interestingly it wasnt my medical dramas that sparked my initial resolve. It was the near death of a shattered heart that inspired me to live every day as if it were my last – enriched tenfold by living it as if it might be your last too. For it was my misinterpretation of what Love was that sent me crashing in the first place. Love isnt as it turns out only reserved for that Special One. It is for everyone I share my life with, if even just for a day. 
Trust me, the Special One will appreciate the lack of smothering.

Good Grief!!!

Last night’s Six Feet Under kicked my ass. It’s kicking my ass writing this now. Nate’s funeral (Hell Week) was the first episode in the entire series where I actually empathized with every character; their anger, guilt, manic emotions, stoic strength, desperate jokes, surreal escapisms, cynicism, shame, nonsensical behaviors and dazed numbness.
I loved SFU  I have such an intensely long history with death and tend to have a wry, dry wit regarding it. Between running dope and weapons and living in ‘that’ world back in the day to helping people kick and escape abuse today I’ve likely been to 60 funerals since I was 14. The worst however were holding my father as he died of cancer and seeing my sister 4 hours before she was murdered trying to leave the same drug running I’d done 10 years previous. Those (and a few others) are with me, just under the surface every day of my life. As was said in the show last night, we grieve til we remember how to love again, but it’s all a part of the fabric of me as I am today. That said, there was a good 10 year stretch where I just plain refused to feel the loss and would simply slip in my Jim Carroll Band – People Who Died tape, get really angry, pick a fight, fuck something and be done with it. (Picture Nate after Lisa) That stretch of ramrodded coping tends to still catch me off guard as the losses I never really grieved 15 years ago crowd up for playing time and leach out with whatever I’m hurting over today. Sometimes the stupidest thing will just fuck me up and I’ll be laughing at myself for tearing up over a cellphone ad but if I take a breath and go just a step deeper I recognize it as just all the old neglected parts getting current.
I dont know that I can watch this episode again though. My girlfriend (whom I’ve strung out on SFU) is supposed to watch it with me on tuesday. She who I picked up from the airport two weeks ago from burying her closest cousin and partner in crime. This episode was too real. In the end I’m grateful for the honesty though. It’s just an extension of why I love the show so much to begin with; it unflinchingly bares the parts of all of us we wouldnt post on a match.com dating profile – it reminds me that I’m no crazier than the next guy and that being human is just okay.

(2005)