Quick! Why did the turkey cross the road?
To remind me of Mr. High School, of course. I was out on a back road when a chattering, fluttering group of turkeys crossed in front of me. I caught myself making mental notes--how many there were, where I saw them, how healthy they were--so I could tell Mr. High School, the hunter man, the next time he called.
Don't blame the birds, though. If it weren't them, it would be something else. A brief (and by no means complete) list of things that remind me of Mr. High School: a hundred or so songs,including pretty much anything at all by Journey, Foreigner, or Credence Clearwater Revival; big trucks and heavy machinery (especially pavers); camouflage; a car dealership a county and a half away that sells a stunning number of vechicles to people in our area and on every car they sell is a metal plate bearing Mr. High School's first name, which happens to be the name of the car dealership; the bread delivery truck from the company headquartered in his hometown; Ford Mustangs (Mr. High School, a confirmed Chevy (or at least non-Ford) man conceded that the newer Mustangs looked so sharp as to be worth owning even though they were likely to be pieces of shit, mechanically speaking*); Millard Fillmore**; antidepressants; NASCAR...
And on and on and on.
It's a funny thing, grief. The experts will tell you it happens in stages, neatly numbered like an emotional To-do list, you can feel a little sense of achievement as you mark off each one.
Here's something those experts don't want you to know: When you reach that final step of "acceptance," and come to terms, at least intellectually, with the idea of the loss, the person you miss is no less gone.
*Ford Motor Company and its legal department should note that not all opinions expressed by Mr. High School were shared by the author of this blog.
**Millard Fillmore? I know you're thinking, "How often could that possibly come up?" Well, pretty damned often, as it happens, since an old guy mentions Millard Fillmore in a Coke Zero commercial. What it has to do with Mr. High School was that we had a history class together in 8th grade and were part of a group of four people studying together for a test. I said, "Millard Fillmore had no..." foolishly waiting for the correct answer ("vice president") from three thirteen-year-old boys. Instead, GW, a blond and chubby pervert, blurted, "Dick!" And for the rest of the year the four of us talked long and often about how Millard Fillmore had no dick.
The Skin of Our Teeth
23 hours ago