Category Archives: Links my father sent me

Hot ElvisWhat’s up? Wuz up!?

My early rising routine is slowly going away. I went from 5:00 to 5:30 to 6:00. This morning, I awoke at 6 but didn’t move until 6:30.

Last night I went to the Bensalem Amphitheater and saw two Elvis Tribute Artists perform. As an encore, they came out together and dueted on Viva Las Vegas. I almost wish they had done more of that… something a little anachronistic, a little odd. Maybe performed a Righteous Brothers’ song together. I really like the idea of two Elvises… young and old, singing together.

At any rate, Labor Day is rapidly approaching and along with Labor Day comes my birthday. I will be turning 38, people. I started this Website when I was 22 and I started blogging when I was 25! Heck, remember when I turned 30?

It feels strange and I want to rebel but I am very aware that the only alternative is death so I might as well buckle up and enjoy the ride.

Besides, things have gotten better for me. The passing of my father actually has ushered in some amazing things… of course I would give it all up to get him back but it doesn’t work like that. I remember my dad telling me when he turned 40 he said to his mother, “Ilya, your baby’s turned 40!” I’m not 40 yet but I keep thinking, “Jimmie, your baby’s turning 38!” Effit. I guess the big lesson of the day is to get your heart checked regularly.

What other news do I have? I am on the Tim Ferris, 4 Hour Body, Slow Carb Diet. I am eating nothing but egg whites, spinach, salsa, chicken, lettuce, black beans, guac, coffee, water, and oodles and oodles of wine! I am down 10 lbs at a weight I haven’t seen since… oh gosh, The Baltic Sea? What year was that? 2000? Maybe earlier… I can’t remember.

Weird Stuff Happens

I went to Rosemont yesterday. I was invited to be a guest speaker for one of their graduate classes. Craziness! It felt pretty awesome being on campus as an expert and not a shy student who has no idea what she wants to be when she grows up. Strolling through campus to get to my car, I reached for my phone with the thought, “I gotta call Daddy and tell him how this went.”

As soon as the thought took shape, I realized it wasn’t 1996. I can’t call Daddy.

That night I had a dream he somehow materialized and I was so happy because I had so many things to ask him. I asked him question after question but the only one I now remember was, “Should I hire a matchmaker?” His reply was, “Get out and circulate, meet people… you’ll be fine.”

Sometimes the Internet is a time machine. I’ve been trying to do more with Google+ and as I’ve putzed around it, I found they’ve integrated all the old Picasa Web albums into their photo section. Google+ is less than a year old but my albums date back 6 years. Holy cow have things changed. There were pictures of my dad and pictures of PB. Just thinking of those damn pictures makes me want to cry.

How times change

Yesterday we gathered together, friends and family, to do pysanky. Last year pysanky was interrupted. Cousin David and his family were on their way over when my dad died. It’s just one month shy of a full year. I don’t know how that’s possible. I still can feel the heaviness in the air in those days after my dad’s death. There was an otherworldly quality that lingered. I remember sitting out on the deck with Lisa and mom, feeling the air crinkling around me. Friends would visit and sit with us and we just sat there, in a state of shock and numbness.

Fast forward to now and my dad is gone but the family comes and we sit around the kitchen table with our styluses, wax, dyes and eggs. We talk about how it’s not the end result but the process of creating the egg. Cracked eggs teach us the ephemeral, temporal quality of life. And I think, yeah, Daddy’s not here anymore.


And in the midst of it is so much joy. Seeing the kids. Watching them get bigger. Introducing the E-Man to my family. Experiencing normalcy. At the end of the night, I hugged E and said, “Thank you for being so kind and sweet and friendly and talkative and normal!”

“How else would I be?” he replied.

If he only knew what I endured with PB.

But it’s over and I need to stop comparing him… it’s hard when everyone says, “It’s so nice to see you with someone so kind and sweet!”

Dad would be happy. If here were here.

I can’t imagine what it’s going to be like as spring appears… spring was always my dad’s favorite time of year. He loved the blooming trees and flowers.

11 months of unadulterated change.

Insert Cute Title

So what’s going on with me? I rearranged my office the other day. The new layout helps my productivity ever so slightly.

Yesterday I went to the shore. Walked the boardwalk, ate a chili dog at The Windmill, and ordered a small ice cream at Hoffman’s. It was a day my father would have loved. That was how he and my mom spent many a weekend. I almost felt like he was there with me. I kept looking out at the ocean and although we spread his ashes a bit south, I pretended he was swimming out there in Belmar.

I had been doing so well. So well, in fact, that I wondered if I was a cold person. As it is, I experience periods where I feel fine but then it hits me. So apparently grief comes in waves. Which is kinda funny because a guy I know recently told me that when you take psychotropic drugs, the experience comes over you in waves.

My mom recently asked me if my subconscious mind had come to terms with dad’s death or do I feel a lingering sense that he will return as if on a vacation? I have to admit, I do have this odd feeling that he will turn up and yet I know that is absolutely ludicrous. It’s this weird internal fight. Dead, can’t be dead, dead, can’t be dead, dead.

Am I there God?

Some amazing things have been happening to me. Ha! I love how I wrote that. Things have been happening to me. As if they were just delivered to me unannounced and unrequested. Truth is, I have kicked and scratched and punched to get these things to happen to me.

Last week I was interviewed on a television news program. And I just got word that I have been confirmed as a guest on a national radio show.

I have tweeted and blogged and FBed and hired a publicist and made calls and wished and hoped, thought and prayed.

It was just a evenings ago, Big E put a Charles Bronson movie in the DVD and brought me a bowl of ice cream, when I thought, “I am deliciously happy.”

It seems odd to be happy. And even with all the wonderful things going on, I still feel like I am waiting for my life to begin. I suppose in my mind, I figure my life will begin when I don’t have to kick and scratch and punch. Maybe it’s the kicking, scratching, and punching that is life.

Today would have been my father’s 74th birthday. It would also have been my parent’s 50th wedding anniversary. I called Lisa this morning and I said, “If things had gone differently in April, can you imagine what we would be doing right now? Running around getting a party set up… or maybe flying somewhere?”

It was just a few days before Daddy died that Lisa and I started to talk about what we were going to do for their big 50. Party? Trip? Both?

It’s funny how things can change so very quickly.

Factory Reset

Menu > Settings > SD & Phone Storage > Factory Data Reset

I reset my HTC Evo 3D. I even wiped the SD card. So far it seems better. It’s responsive, finally. Fingers crossed it keeps behaving.

This afternoon, a client said to me that I reminded her of her cousin. We are both tall with similar voices, she said.

“What does she do?”

“She’s an aerialist”

“An aerialist?”

“She’s in the circus… she flies around on a trapeze.”


I had quite a day yesterday. Christmas Brunch at Erin’s. I got to see Cathy and RJ’s honeymoon pictures. Looking at them frolicking in Australia, I couldn’t help but marvel at how things change. I remember when RJ announced his engagement to Cathy on Facebook. It was on Christmas day last year. At that time, I was waiting for PB to propose to me. He had promised to propose on New Year’s Eve. Of course, it didn’t quite happen that way. I remember feeling so destroyed when New Year’s Eve rolled around and nothing happened. I think it was the next day that I told PB I was finished with him and that he should pack his bags and leave. Instead of leaving he finally produced the long anticipated ring. It was too late. I remember my gut told me to run. I didn’t run but nor did I say yes. I kept thinking he would re-propose the right way. He didn’t. He did eventually take the cheap ring back. Couple months later, my father died and my eyes finally opened and courage returned. I ended the 5 year relationship by not returning his 3 phone calls. Yep.

Looking at Cathy and RJ and seeing how happy they are, I kept thinking how lucky I am. I could have married PB and then I’d be divorced by now. I stayed in that relationship for so long because I feared being alone and single and back in the dating pool. I am so much happier now. Life is so much better. Why was I so scared to be on my own? Why did I put up with so much crap for so long?

I brought Big E with me to Erin’s brunch. On our drive to her house, he didn’t throw any tantrums and while we were there, he was friendly and talkative. Imagine that! It was stress-free and totally enjoyable. My life has changed.

After brunch, we went to Asbury Park. We sat on a bench on the boardwalk and watched the moon hover above the ocean, leaving a trail of light across the waves. Once we were sufficiently frozen, we entered the Pinball museum and played Skeeball and other games for a half hour. Instead of going straight home, we went to Shady Brook Farm and drove through their Holiday Light Show.

180 degrees. And with the exception of my father not being here, I am happy with the changes.


I wonder if I need a vacation? The last few days have seen me totally and utterly exhausted. I can’t believe that staying out late one night would be enough to crash me.

Thanksgiving is rapidly approaching. Thanksgiving was my dad’s holiday. He loved deep frying the turkey. He loved how the neighbors would line up to get their turkeys thrown into the vat. I can’t imagine Thanksgiving without him. We’re trying to figure out what to do… clearly deep frying without him is out of the question. Aunt Helen invited us to her house for dinner. Maybe that’s what we’ll do.

Uncle Dick died yesterday. He’s not a blood relative. Just a friend of the family for as long as I can remember. I tell you, they are all dropping like flies. Daddy. Mary’s husband. Rose’s husband. Sheila’s husband. And now Allison’s husband, Uncle Dick. I hope this is the last for awhile.

The Modern World, Jerk

Going through old voicemails, I found this:

7/21/09 10:11 PM 2 years ago

I was testing out Google Voice with my dad…

Hearing his voice, it’s hard to believe that it’s going to be 7 months tomorrow that he’s been gone. I miss him so much. I miss him so much.

Hello? You there?

Gosh, I’ve been quiet. It’s hard. I don’t want to write about business and when I am not conducting business, I am dating… or trying to date. And I did say that I don’t want to love blog this time which really throws a wrench into the whole blogging about my life thing I got going on here.

It seems like it’s either feast or famine. I am either dating tons of guys or I can’t find a date. Right now I am feasting. I’ve been out with a very nice gentleman who stands 6’7, with long, silky blond hair and thick mutton chop sideburns, 3 times. I’ve also gone out 3 times with a 50-something-year-old man with 4 kids, ages 17-24. Oddly enough, I met neither man on Match. But no more love blogging from me. That’s all I will say.

What else? I don’t know. I saw my favorite band, The Rivers Rockabilly Trio perform last Friday. It was fantastic! Danced my ass off.

Not good Not bad It just is

Sometimes it all seems back to normal but then it falls apart like a house of cards. I miss my father so much. Last week things went on in my life that made me yearn for him. He would have been so excited for me and proud. I could practically hear him relating the events happening to some story from his past, clearing his throat so he could tell me in his best radio voice. I walked by the basement today and I so wanted to hear him call me down to help him with his computer.

And in other not so good news, yesterday I found myself saying some very familiar words to a man… words that I said to Heiko and PB, and I wondered, why am I always the one pressing? Why can’t it be the other way around? Why can’t I be the one to reply, “Hmmmm, I think I need to process this, can I, uhhhh, get back to you?”

I tried to get Lisa and mom to come to some sort of consensus as to how we will spend the holidays. Visit family? Bermuda? I think the decision is to stay home and cry.

I think maybe I will go holiday mad and decorate like it’s nobody’s business. I’ll wear ugly holiday sweaters and a Santa cap for the entire month of December.