Everyone knows the despicable situation when you’ve had repeated and meaningful interaction with a specific person, knowing their circles, hobbies, hometown, and quirks, but forgetting one crucial aspect:
It is far too late to ask. You know they know your name, they proceed to rub it in your face every time you greet each other. I ran into this problem somewhat in my high school days (being class president means you can only afford to have an affluent inner group of friends) and even more so during my tenure at A&M. There were a lot of greetings, a lot of smiles, one Dale, and a host of “buddies.”
This post is not about semi friends or even my inflated sense of importance, it’s just a more interesting way to start a post on a rarely-used blog that has a lot of nameless pals. Thank you, nameless pals. Keep greeting me and perhaps one day I will write to you more regularly. I may even learn your names and speak to you directly. Until then, lets learn some more about what’s going on.
Christina and I are still married, and happily so. We have one child, Casper, and a new house set up in Spring Texas. Casper is 8 months old and a joy.
This house, though, is significantly older than Casper. This house is significantly older than me, in fact. When I was born, this house was 15 years old and could almost drive without a permit. All of the sudden, he had this young yuppie moving into him with his multiethnic family (“the 70’s were different times,” the house protests) and waltzing through his rooms like he invented the 3/4 time signature. Like a more seasoned employee looking down upon his younger and less experienced counterpart, the house postured itself against me and my family from the moment it saw us examining the flames along the side of the mailbox.
It was awkward.
Given that my job as a younger person is be hellishly abandoned and optimistic in the face of the daunting odds, I decided to ignore the critiques and start working to mend the pains that had grown on the older home. The doors leading into the dining room had neither doorknobs nor an ability to stay closed, so I installed some handles and ball-catches. Both our bedroom faucet and an outside spigot were leaking water, a sign of forgetfulness on the part of the house. I tightened the washers and mitigated the water damage. The house seemed begrudgingly thankful, but wasn’t about to overflow with any sort of exhortation.
Christina and I will keep trying.
You see, this house isn’t even aware of the opinions it has formed as it has grown up. He’s forgotten the things he swore to remember and remembered some things he vowed to forget. As his backyard became a tangled mess, he forgot about the early days of landscaping, planning, and blossoming. The weeds grew easier than the flowers.
This house didn’t want to end up unkept, but nobody kept up with him.
Christina and I hope to fix that. Our plan is to fill the house up with new memories, hopefully enough to soften the older ones. He has a boy that I’m going to need him to help me raise, and hopefully more to come. He has a family that wants him, if he’ll take us.
Good things are difficult, and in the words of Don Chaffer, sometimes you gotta just work the earth until the love comes down.
With this much earth to work, we’re planning for a lot of love. Maybe this old house will help us.