Sunday, August 28, 2016

The Disinterested Son…

After I delivered the car I sold yesterday afternoon, I decompressed for a few minutes and took a walk around the lot. The receptionist called me and I met a middle aged man and his teenaged son in the show room.

“My son needs a car, his first car.”

Imagine yourself at 17, a high school senior, your dad takes you to a new car dealership and is going to buy you a new damned car, anything you want up to $40,000…how would you act? Excited? Enthusiastic? Would you have a scenario crafted in your head? Not this dude, he was barely responsive, looking at his phone, non-communicative, zero excitement, no interest at all.

“I was thinking about a Jeep.” The father said.

We walked to a new Wrangler, a white Sport two door. I said to the kid, “Can you drive a stick?”


“Do you want to learn? It’s not hard.”

“No.” He went back to his phone. I tossed a change up, “The red one is an automatic, you want to look at it?”

“I suppose.”

I showed them the car, the kid showed no interest, the father did. “We should drive it, I’ll need a copy of your license.”

“I didn’t bring it.”

“You didn’t bring your license?” His father said. “Why not?”

“I never carry it.”


“I haven’t driven for almost a month, why should I?”

“Your mother says you’re a good driver.”

“How would she know, she’s only ridden with me once and we just went to the store and back.” He went back to his phone.

The father said, “Show me something that might catch his interest.” He and I walked to the used car line, sonny boy tagged along behind us. I pointed out a Subaru WRX, kid shook his head no, I suggested a Mini-Cooper, the kid shook his head no again. I stopped at a black 2013 Camaro convertible, “This is a very nice, low mileage Camaro, V6, automatic.” The kid looked up for a minute from his phone and shook his head no again.”

The father looked at me, “Sorry for wasting your time, Josh doesn’t seem to interested in getting a car.” We shook hands and watched them walk off, get in the dad’s Mercedes S Class and drive away. Young Josh never looked up from his phone.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Two guys from Boston start “tawkin”…

I haven’t done a post like this for a while.

I greeted a guy at work last week. He was on a mission to find a used 9 passenger SUV, 4 wheel drive. This guy was driving a Bentley and had a heavy Boston accent. He was wearing a t-shirt with the sleeves ripped off, baggy cargo shorts and a Bentley ball cap. He looked a little like Michael Moore. We talked for a few minutes and I said, “You’re from Boston, right?”

“You got that right, pal.”

I told him I’d spent most of my life in Boston, instantly he switched in to full Boston mode. Examples:

“Fuckin Sox man, you believe how fucking tight the AL East is…Jesus.”

“Me and my cousin Billy come out here in the early 70’s to fuck around and I never went back, that rat bastid left and went back to Dorchestah afta a month or two, me I got a fuckin job inna gas station in Brentwood and just fuckin stayed, know what I mean?”

“I own that station now, gotta deli in the son of bitch, ‘nother one in Beverley Hills, Moorpark, 8 of the fuckahs. Don’t make any god damn money on gas, make it sellin other shit and cah washes.”

“The old lady and I just bought a place up in Montana, need the 9 passenger son of bitch to leave up at the airport, there in Missoula, just paak the piece of shit in my hanger, when we aint theyah. Load the fuckin grandkids innit and drive uptah our place. Fucking snow up the ass in the wintah. Evah been theyah?”

“Evah go tah Nantucket before them rich fucks from New York fucked it all up? It was fuckin paradise befoah they fuckin bought the whole fuckin place, bunch of assholes.”

“Know something, Bawbby? (I became Bwabby instantly) Ida nevah come out here if fuckin Jimmy Catah hadn’t gotten rid of the fuckin draft, Ida been in the fucking jungle, know what I mean?”

“I got this Bentley for the old lady, she don’t like the fuckin thing, make her feel guilty for some goddamn reason, I think the fuckin nuns got to her.”

“Belichik is kinda an asshole, but I love the fuckin guy.”

“I hate the fuckin Jets.”

“Know what I miss? A decent bowl of clam chowdah. Can’t get that shit out heah.”

“Fuckin Mexicans work theyah asses off, good fuckin people, got two of the fuckahs running stations foah me, got my eye onna another couple of the bastids, honest and smaat little bastids.”

“I worked haad, but I got lucky, know what I mean?”

“Grew up withoutta pot tah piss in, now I aint got enough piss foah all ah pots.”

“The old lady said to me, “Yah know I liked it bettah when we had that little house when we first was married, now there’s too much shit to keep track of.” I told her I’d sell it all and buy her a triple deckah in Dorchestah, buy her a rusty fuckin Toyota if that’s what she wants. She passed on my offah.”

And that ain’t the half of it…now if I had the right cah, I’d call the fat pant bastid up and sell it to him.

Friday, August 19, 2016

My Journey….”The Exploration”

I spent an hour yesterday with Erica. I’m on an every other week schedule.

She had given me homework. I read it and reviewed it yesterday before our session. I’m at the point in my therapy where we are beginning to search for the source of my bout with depression.

It’s strange that I spent so many years, almost 50, in the communication business and in so many ways I’m a poor communicator. When you step back from yourself and are forced to think clearly about how you behave, how you react to situations, how you respond to others. Certain patterns emerge and I found myself yesterday thinking, “Holy shit, that’s why that happened.”

An example, Erica asked me, “Have you ever told Jan how you want to be loved?”

I thought about it and said, “No, not exactly.” She said, “Why not?” I didn’t have an answer. That’s certainly something to think about isn’t it?

On the other side of the coin, I haven’t ever asked her how she wants to be loved, either. It’s pretty dumb to stumble around mentally, when all you have to do is ask, listen and respond in an appropriate way.

When I was a kid the people around me didn’t or seldom ever expressed the way they really felt about things, we all suppressed our feelings. I know my Dad was very frustrated much of his life, but he seldom talked openly about it. I watched him take a 180 after his heart attack at 39. He was angry, depressed and pretty much a changed man. It was painful to watch and experience, but Dad never said anything about how he felt. He just acted pissed off all the time. My Mom was hurt, worried and would sit up most of the night doing ceramics to take her mind off all of the crap that was going on in our lives. What did I do? Nothing, I never asked my Mom how she felt, never asked Dad either. Did I tell any of my friends? No. We all just kept our mouths shut and suppressed it. We enabled each other’s behavior. It took years for my Mother to let it out, all of her hurt and anger and pain came out 25 years later.

I talk all the time, most of the time without actually communicating. I think it began when I walked around in 9th and 10th grade never telling anyone how I felt or what was going on in my life. I’ve never stopped and I’ve made people close to me very puzzled from time to time because of it. Erica didn’t say it, but all these years later it all caved in on me and I sat on my ass at the bottom of that deep dark hole for a year and a half.

Insight is a wonderful thing…

More to come.

Thursday, August 4, 2016

My Journey…

I haven’t posted for a while. Not that this adventure is over, it’s because my work schedule creates scheduling problems since my only reliable day off is Thursday. (Imagine that!)

I did sit down today with Erica for an hour, my first session in a month. Her first question was, “So Robert, how are you doing?”

I told her my bouts with depression are still showing up, but they are sometimes weeks apart and not as debilitated as they were in the past, so my life is much better. I’m sleeping more and I’m not as anxious as I was. I told her that I believe I have it under control at least to the point where it’s not totally kicking my ass day in and day out.

Erica then said, “I think we need to start looking for the sources of your depression. By doing that we can find where it started and why it started.” She floated some ideas she had from her study of my records and from our conversations. She went on to say that “I might be surprised how and when the groundwork was laid for the deep hole I fell into.”

She gave me some ideas to think about and better ways to communicate my feelings to Cakes and in general communicate in a better, more openly, with not only my wife, but others too.

Plenty to think about, lots to work on. She did say that my job has given a big dose of self-esteem and she can see the physical change in me and not just how much better my attitude is too. So I did get a pat on the back today.

We meet again on the 18th. I have a ton of homework to do, we’ll see how it goes.

Self-examination isn’t for weaklings…