Search This Blog

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Growing Up In Pages

What do you get for your son when he turns thirteen?

I got him some new bearings and wheels for his skateboard.

But I wanted something, something that would let him know that he has entered a new phase in life. He has slowly been shedding the markings of boyhood the last few years and now can officially claim the right to his path to manhood.

Becoming a man doesn't happen with the flip of a switch. It is a journey and a process without a doubt. For some it takes a lifetime. And for some people, they never become one; they just aimlessly wonder the planet in some twisted man-boy universe.

So I dug through my boxes of books, books that have no room to live in my meager one bedroom apartment, and tried to find him a tome that could only be passed down from father to son.

He recently told me that he didn't like to read. I told him I didn't like to read at his age either. The problem with reading, I informed him, is that it helps to like what you are reading. Until I discovered what I like to read, it was a chore. But once I sink my teeth into something enjoyable, I devour each page racing to see where the story takes me and how it will end.

I found a timeless classic bury in one of the boxes...

I gave my dog eared copy of The Catcher In The Rye.

Curious to see what he makes of it.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

What's In A Name?

Although I am not a practicing Catholic, I still find that Catholicism impacts my life in various ways.

But I went to parochial school for twelve straight years (yes I can tie a Windsor knot in my sleep) and so it is expected that saints and sinners still permeate my existence.

This whole papal conclave that is all over the media made me want to address how my blog got its name.

Over the years I have been fascinated by many things spiritual and holy but it always goes back to one saint from my youth that has been a constant in my life: Saint Jude.

Saint Jude was the name of the elementary school I went to as a kid. He is one of the original twelve apostles. And he is also known as the patron saint of hopeless cases. People pray to St. Jude in times of trouble when they are facing seemingly impossible odds.

I have felt, since a young age, that I have always faced seemingly impossible odds. I was convinced I was going to die young by some terminal disease (thanks Brian's Song!). I had slit my wrist in elementary school when I accidentally ran through a glass storm door. Freshman year in high school one of the juvies in my homeroom deemed me cool because he thought the scars on my wrist were from a botched suicide attempt. At fifteen, I fell at a park on a broken beer bottle, stabbing me deeply in the belly (which left a scar that looks eerily Christ-like on my abdomen).

Later in life, in 2004, there was that near-death experience during a Sudafed-induced heart attack. Which, by the way, gave this blog its URL and my band its name.

So as you can see, I've always had a soft spot for Saint Jude because of some of the, what seemed at times, insurmountable odds I have personally overcome.

I leave you with this line from the Prayer to Saint Jude: Jude, saint of the impossible, let me never lose hope in the face of overwhelming odds, even when circumstances look like they will never turn out for the best.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Old School Skate Session

You should see what they can do now.