Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Little Memories Light the Corners of My Mind

You just keep thinking, Butch

First we worked together. Marc and I were employed by the same major construction company. And a careful perusal of our histories showed that was just when we happened to be in the same place at the same time. We had traveled the same path before finally meeting in Kansas City 23 years ago. And I wonder at times how many other lifetimes before this. It puts me in mind of Richard Bach's book Bridge Across Forever.

Are we soul mates? Yes, I think so. But we did not get it right this lifetime and it has taken so much energy I wonder if I want to try it again. Of the 23 years there were only seven we were married. We were better friends than lovers, better lovers than mates. We were horrid as husband and wife. But through it all we were an are friends. And we shared all those stupid friendship things; all those same favorite movies and classic lines from them. There were so many they almost became a shorthand for verbal communication and others standing around would look at us as if we were just a little crazy.

There are so many quotes from movies with Clint Eastwood (Make my day, etc), and Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoons (Natasha and Boris had too many lines to even mention here) and of course Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Raiders of the Lost Ark . . . then we have to go to all the books we read and loved and quotes from them, oh and politicians we knew and loved or loathed.

A friend who visited once said we were the only couple she knew that used intellectual discussion as foreplay. It was his mind that first turned me on. So when his 1st/3rd wife mentioned at the hospital that the swelling in his brain was compromising neuro activity I wanted to yell, "You just keep thinkiing. Butch, that's what you are good at." But it was his inability to see what was so clear to others, that alcohol and ignoring health issues, would be the death of him that got us all to this place. "What we have here is a failure to communicate," Cool Hand Luke.

And I must quote wife 1/3 here, "Such a fantastic mind to waste." But it was not just his mind he wasted but the love of all those in his life that tried to rescue him. The only thing Marc forgot in all the things he read or heard or watched was that alcoholism is a fatal disease.

Unfortunately, like him, I remember too many things I have read or heard or seen or done. I am sure for years I will tear up with I hear one of those signature lines that became so much of our "unspoken" communication when we worked or lived or loved together.

They may seem like little memories but they are so connected to huge events at times. Memories that lurk in the corners of my mind. Memories I cannot share with him anymore.


  1. 與人相處不妨多用眼睛說話,多用嘴巴思考,............................................................

  2. Grief is the flip side of the coin of love/friendship. The greater the one, the deeper the other. I really appreciate reading about this. You wrote: "A friend who visited once said we were the only couple she knew that used intellectual discussion as foreplay." That friend must lead a sheltered life. Many years ago when Brigitte Bardot (remember her?) was asked about her most important erogenous zone, she replied: "Le grand rictus". The muscle that is involved when you laugh. She went way up in my esteem after that.

  3. Loved your comment, Ien. Nothing to me is as sexy as an agile brain. I do remember, Brigitte Bardot, and always loved her remarks though I had not heard the one you quoted. It will now be one of my favorite.


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