I had 2 options on the flight back to New York – read my C.S. Lewis book and fill my mind with lofty thoughts or, instead, stuff my face with Chex mix & watch “New Year’s Eve”, likely the dumbest movie I’ve ever seen.
I went for dumber and dumber and these pretzels are indeed making me thirsty. And annoyed. As the guy with the big Santa sweater keeps coming down the aisle and knocking his elbow directly into my glasses. Nice. Real nice.
On the flight back I’m thinking about the past week in Phoenix. Where the air is clean and the sun is bright. You can actually see the sky. And the people are quite normal. Aside from the sale of fireworks at Costco.
It’s always good to be home. That un-stimulated sense of peace and calm that only comes from hanging around mom & dad and being in an environment that does not include one thousand 40 foot neon signs.
Phoenix is the un-Times square.
It’s very important to go home. Because mom has been hiding and hoarding ugly sweaters and Salvation Army aprons. Despite Leslie’s valiant efforts to clean mom’s closet, somehow a few red and green knit thingos appeared this year. And were summarily removed, just like Netflix service on the 24th by the Grinch.
As for the aprons, the most recent edition of “Priority” magazine very unhelpfully provided a link where mom can now purchase Salvation Army aprons, aprons she sews and re-sews, because for some reason the Williams & Sonoma one just “doesn’t have heart.”
It’s very important to go home to watch mom. Because the woman has everything organized including plastic containers for “toothpaste” “lotion” and “razors.” She also manages to cook 4 things at a time while on the phone with Leslie as she throws in a load of laundry just to make sure she’s fully maximizing the time.
I get tired just looking at her.
It’s also very important to go home to monitor mom & dad’s Netflix choices. Remember when everyone said globalization meant the entire world would be watching “Saved by the Bell?”
Mom & dad have turned U.S. hegemony on its head as they tune into Norwegian TV where they say words like they’re spitting and kill people who steal their child’s teddy bear. At least that’s what I got.
The best Christmas moments were waking up early and talking with mom about our quiet times over coffee. The quiet moments. The times when we’re just being, not doing. Like when Madeline Tkatchov came over and fell asleep on mom’s tummy. There’s something about stillness that’s so rare and beautiful and soothing. Unlike the elbow that just got rammed into my face. Yet again.
We took a walk down Central everyday and had coffee at this place with cinammon buns the size of small child’s head. It was downright scary. Over coffee we decided the fate of Mark Sanchez, Wally made important phone calls, and Esther and I debated the merits of wedge shoes.
I ragged on people who run around in circles for fun (guess people call that marathoning) and dad would quickly put in his headphones to listen to Tim Keller – apparently uninterested in wedge shoes, my thoughts on Sanchez, or people who like to run in circles.
We then scooted over to See’s candy where mom insisted we all try to get a free sample from the nice lady wearing a white shirt and a black bow around her neck. Also the size of a small child’s head.
I whispered to mom that some of us might pitch in the $1 so as not to exploit the kindness of the See’s candy lady. Which is something mom does not understand. Because whereas most people get tired and worn out by generousity, mom has an unlimited supply.
Which is a nice picture to think upon as we enter 2013.
Despite our failures and selfishness in 2012, God’s love has no limit. His forgiveness has no “deal breakers.” He never tires of extending kindness to us.
For the record, I bought my See’s candy. Much to mom’s chagrin…