Tuesday, December 06, 2016

Grief Post - Six Months

Today I mark six months since my father died.  That summer day changed my life, and I've been dreading the winter and its cold bleak depression.

I'm bitter that the leaves of my father's last spring will soon be desiccated litter.  Dad loved the spring.  He taught me to watch for the burst of new shoots with that audacious new green.  I want the desperate optimistic energy that powers that new life to stay with me.

I'm grateful that some of the trees in my neighborhood are holding their leaves this year, even past the first snow.  It feels like a gift to me.  They're hanging on, and, for now, so am I.  When they finally fall I will mourn the passage of time and my one and only dad.  I will also be glad that those leaves hung on as long as they did.

I miss you, Dad.

Tuesday, July 05, 2016

Grief Post

Dear Dad,

Today is one month since your last day alive. How I hate this ever-increasing length. It's a hateful ribbon trailing out behind me, connecting me to fuller days behind and reminding me of the difference between those days and these. The difference, the margin, the subtraction, the lessening. I didn't know how rich I was then.

Today I remember your weary voice asking me for help with your broken cell phone. Today I remember you, harried and wounded by the goddamn C. Diff, telling me how you wanted your life to be better in the future. Today I remember the recliner that held you as you died, and how light it was as I rocked it back and forth as a mean substitute for giving you a long hard hug. I love you, Dad, and I miss you. I hope I see you again.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Richard Edward Porubcansky

Oh, people, it hurts like hell to say this.

My father, Richard Edward Porubcansky, died peacefully and unexpectedly overnight between June 5 and 6, 2016.

If you didn't know him, then look at me. I am every inch my father's son, and I am so proud and heartbroken. If you did know him, then please mourn with me.

Dad taught me so much: how to be a citizen and caretaker, how to listen to my own voice and learn to be myself, how to be goofy, how to throw things. How to shave, how to tie a tie, how to make sure your friends and family are going to be okay.

He also taught me the cost of living for duty. Friends, don't do this. Remember that every person is a human, not a superman or superwoman, yourself included. Remember that you'll need help in life, and especially if you are inclined to go it alone, heed my words right now: ask for help, then accept that help. Dad didn't do enough of that in his quest to shield other people from trouble and pain. He was noble, but he took on too much and it weighed on him terribly.

Despite the weight he chose to carry, my dad has been a surpassing father, a caring friend, and so much fun. The word that people have been saying to me is "hero" and while I know that word is for people who fly around doing impossible things, damn if hearing them say that doesn't make my heart ache with pride and loss.

Please share stories of my dad in the comments, if you have them.

Rest, Dad. You're supported by the love of so many people, and I'm proud to be one of them. I love you, always.

In the clearing stands a boxer
And a fighter by his trade
And he carries the reminder
Of every glove that laid him out
Or cut him till he cried out
In his anger and his shame:
"I am leaving, I am leaving"
But the fighter still remains.

- "The Boxer"
written by Paul Simon

Friday, February 27, 2015

Leonard Nimoy

I'm so sad today to hear of Leonard Nimoy's death. His portrayal of Spock gave me a touchstone as an awkward smart kid. He showed me an image of an intelligent, respected adult who was different yet accepted without question. Maybe that could be my future instead of feeling like I couldn't fit in.

For the hope he gave me, I adopted him as mine, and now I feel both loss and gratitude.

Thank you, Leonard! Rest in peace.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Halloween: Barometer of Life Fun

So it's Halloween! Short entry because I have to go work out.

My costumes the past couple of years have been small-time. Peanuts. Il Last-Minuté.

One of the barometers of fun levels in your life should be how much fun you have, and how awesome your costume is.

Next Halloween, I should make a point of general increased awesomeness. Creative costume, etc.

How's Halloween for you?

Sunday, October 14, 2007

The Other Way of Work

From the Onion AV Club this week, an interview with artsy people (an actor and a director in the Chicago theater scene):

Q: (irrelevant)
A: I guess it's both the blessing and the curse of the business. You're not a nine-to-fiver, slaving away at the same office or whatever every day of your life. You have a different environment and a different family every time. That's the really exciting thing. But then at the end of the run, everyone goes their separate ways.

Versus my situation - nine-to-fiver (actually closer to eight-to-sixer) in an office, same people, health insurance, budget spreadsheets instead of creating art. I'm tired of my setup.

What do you prefer? If you're lodged in one, would you prefer the other?


DVD Chapter Titles - No Longer Boring

Most people who read this will probably already know that I am a big fan of zombies. The walking dead, be they fast or slow, tickle a special nerve in me. They're big fans of me, too, in an arrangement whereby the special nerve they'd like to tickle in me is my brain, and they hope I don't mind terribly if they do the tickling with their teeth.

That weirds me out a bit.

Anyway, short of letting them eat my brains, the best way I've found to commune with zombies is to watch the movies in which they so ably steal scenes.

To that end, I bought 28 Weeks Later* and a colorized version of Night of the Living Dead.

The DVD issue of Night of the Living Dead that I got has some lovely chapter names. You know how they're usually silly, like "4. Xanthar and Auron At The Used Car Lot"? Here's a sample of much better chapter names from Night of the Living Dead:

3. Zombies Hate Clotheslines
4. Fun With A Tire Iron
5. Let The Board Nailing Begin!
10. Barbra's Still Out To Lunch
12. Barbra's STILL Out To Lunch
15. Dad, Your Arm Tastes Great!

With chapters like these, I can hardly wait to pull out the movie and see how it looks in color.

I did finally watch 28 Weeks Later, and I enjoyed it. I think it's worth a second watch and then a third with the director's commentary. Very effective, nasty movie.

* Yes, I know they're not technically zombies in the 28 series. No, I don't care. back

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

I live... again!

I suppose I think I'm so clever, not writing anything in my blog (henceforth referred to as my "blog") for months and months. I suppose I think that people are all sitting about their dens in their smoking-jackets, stroking their chins absently as they wonder whatever became of that smashing chap Matthew, and his continuing adventures. I suppose I think that concerned groups of fans are even now retracing my last posts just as a jury now follows the path to the spot where Diana Spencer's car crumpled to a rest.

Well, I'm here to set myself straight. None of these things are happening.

These things, however, are:

  • I have joined a flag football league. It is mostly gay men, which kind of freaked me out at first (have I ever been a minority in my life? I don't count American-living-in-France). The guys don't give me too much flak for being straight. I have settled at quarterback, and I really love it. So far I am throwing more touchdowns than interceptions, so woo hoo! This makes me wonder how I would have done if I'd joined the football team in high school.

  • I have joined the local gym. I am eating much better than I used to. I am running probably five days out of seven. I have a bit more energy than I used to. It makes me feel stronger and faster.

  • Cathy is posting enormous amounts of Japan to my "blog".

  • I am itching to begin something else with my life, something more useful, something I'm more interested in doing long-term. Start with grad school, maybe? Or possibly a service organization. Something that matters to the world, though.

  • If all goes well, I'll be attending the Packers-Redskins game at Lambeau this weekend.

  • I noticed tonight that I enjoy pop songs that build themselves up at the end. Radiohead's Let Down, Weezer's Only In Dreams, and the troublesome twosome of Fake Empire and Mistaken For Strangers by The National all exhibit this ass-kicking quality. Download, all ye faithful.

I need a mission in life. Doesn't that sound like a good thing to have?