Tuesday, May 14, 2013

A Blank Slate

This page sits before me.... white and blank.  I fully intended to write something profound, something deep and meaningful, but instead I sit here wondering.   Wondering.   Wondering.......

..... why I was unlucky enough to be born into a family that already had its quota of children, but lucky enough to have a brother who looked the other way when I snuck into his bedroom and listened to his Beatles and Herman's Hermits and Dave Clark Five albums.

.....why I was unlucky enough to have parents who were so absolutely the stereotypical definition of "white bread" who chose to raise me in a white-bread, Catholic, small-minded small town, yet I was lucky enough to discover my Dad's cassette tape of the soundtrack to the all black cast of Hello Dolly which I believe to this day to be the absolute best cast recording of that show....  and that somehow growing up in this environment had the opposite effect on me than what you might expect....  in that I will rarely meet someone for the first time and be able to guess that person's race or religion -nor will I have any desire to do so.  I was so underexposed that I was just blind to it all.....  I guess.

.....why I was unlucky enough to have parents who didn't give a rat's petuty where I went to college, as long as I went to college and learned something that I could use to earn a living and get out of the house, but I was lucky enough to go to NCCC where I met a girl who was a total nut job who years later introduced me to the man I married.

.....why I was unlucky enough to not pursue music in any way, shape or form in college or early in my adult life, but I was lucky enough to know my musical shortcomings and practice like hell to pass an audition for BCAS.  I am fairly certain that, given my genetic makeup, had I continued with clarinet and piano and voice at an early age, I would have become some musical savant and probably would have  been very full of myself and would have considered myself far too superior for the likes of a community chorus.

.....why I was unlucky enough to have parents who were more concerned with what I wore to grade school than they were with where I attended grade school - or junior high or high school.   The Tonawanda schools were hardly a challenge , and as a result, I never had the need to develop any sort of useful study skills.  Hmmm ...  now, I'm not sure what the corollary is to this one.  Ok....  I've got it!  I'm lucky that in my adult life, my lack of preparation and study skills forced me to get really good at pulling my ass out of the proverbial fire.  Oh, and not to mention, my solemn vow that my child would never be in an unchallenging academic environment.  Just ask her some time -  if or when the topic of "unlucky" should arise.

.....why I was unlucky enough to land back in Tonawanda to raise my own child, but I was lucky enough to have a mortgage payment that is the equivalent of the heating bill in some of the mansions in Williamsville or Clarence.

.....why I was unlucky enough to inherit my Dad's cholesterol and blood pressure problems, but lucky enough to inherit his sense of humor to see me through it all.

.....why I was unlucky enough to marry into a family of codependents, enablers, bi-polar personalities and alcoholics, but lucky enough to still be a member of that family today..... because I have learned over the years what to say to them and what not to say to them.  What they are capable of and what they are incapable of.   That they will curse each other over and over, but then they will circle the wagons like nothing you've ever seen if someone is perceived as having threatened one of them.  That they would rather self-destruct than confront.  I knew nothing of this type of family and I had to learn slowly and sometimes painfully over the course of many years.  I am lucky, because I can use what I have learned to offer help to others who also find themselves suddenly thrust into this unfamiliar territory.

One man's trash is another man's treasure.

What really is the definition of luck anyway?

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