When I Need A Pick Me Up, by my friend Ryan King

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Figure Eight ... As Double Four ...

So why did this make me cry?

Earlier today a memory leapt unbidden to the fore. Oddly it involves a boy named Scott. Picture a pre-teen alien trying to bond with the earthling children in a primitive ritual they called Touch Football. No one was fooling anyone. You got that ball and your ass was quite literally grass. Scott was the neighborhood don. Somehow, perhaps because he was the most psychotic, he commanded the most respect from the underlings. In this little gem of backyard games called "touch" football, his dominance manifested itself in the position of quarterback.

And there I was, volunteered to play just because the moment arose (like my temporary insanity) and I made my bid to jockey with the other boys for Scott's favor. So there I am, trying to belong. To me, as he is formulating his plays, Scott says, "Alan, you're rushing!" To wit I immediately respond, "No I'm not! I'm American!"

Scott fell out. Oh, I had scored bigger and better than I ever would through some game of brute force. I made Scott truly and deeply laugh.

And I've never stopped trying since.

My weapons and my defenses are words. My ministrations are words. I speak them, I sing them, I write them, I purr them. I bring life and I slay dragons with words.

Today I turned 44. In those days when I found humor was my salvation, I would spend Saturdays inside the house watching TV until my mother came home from work. Eventually my attempts to keep the neighborhood bullies at bay with humor failed and it was just easier to stay upstairs than try, like Scheherezade, to entertain my way past a death sentence. Schoolhouse Rock would play between the SuperFriends and the Blue Falcon and Hong Kong Phooey. I learned the Preamble to the Constitution through Schoolhouse Rock, as well as my 3x's table, and how a bill becomes a law. But that Figure 8 toon would always capture me.

Such a lonely and plaintive melody for my favorite number. And that little girl's voice. Who was this little girl? Is she so self-satisfied and confident in her daydream that she sounds like that? Or is she as lonely as the melody she's singing with? Is she as lonely as me--a latchkey genius kid in the land of the Lord of the Flies?


Figure Eight ... As double four ... Figure Four ... is half of eight

If you skate, you would be great
If you could make
A figure eight

That's a circle that turns round upon itself

Place it on it's side and it's a symbol meaning

... infinity


I just wanted something to symbolize turning 44 on the 8th, but...

Am I the only one who cried today?

2 comments:

Alan said...

Oh, and let me not forget that I ran out of my meds two days ago.

GrizzBabe said...

Rush thyself to the pharmacist and get thee some meds. Before your date.

Oh, and happy birthday!