IT’S MY LIFE

         “It’s my life—
         It’s now or never.
         I ain’t gonna live forever
         I just wanna live while I’m alive…”

                                      Bon Jovi

I’ve been accused of many things over the years, but having boundary issues is not one of them. Rarely, if ever, have I had to be told something was none of my business. I just don’t tend to go there. If anything, it’s the opposite.

“You need to tell him this,” one says. “You need to say this,” remarks another.

Answering these beckonings with consistent No’s has caused me as often as not to receive looks of profound disappointment—even despair. “I don’t have a dog in that fight,” I think; “WIMP” they sulk back. (It matters not. What people think of me just isn’t my business).

I’m amazed, though, how others opine so passionately of my doings—it blows me away! I’m not talking, mind you, about matters for which I seek opinion. When it comes to wardrobe, (let’s say), I know I’m challenged. As such, I love it when Stacy, Meredith or Tammy chime in. Indeed, I seek it out. Nor did I resent Michael’s recent veto of my new black shirt: (“You’re not Maverick, Dad.”)

Unsolicited admonition, on the other hand, defies logic. This summer, for example, I’ve opted to take three mini-trips. None were necessary and I could have passed on all. Each, though, has been eagerly anticipated.

“Why would you go to Jackie’s wedding?” they asked me. After all, urged naysayers, she was your wife’s sister, and it’s in Baltimore. A best friend is going to China this fall. If you ask me the better question is why is HE going? Wouldn’t the take-out at Ho Wah be closer? Strikes me I’ve more in common with my family out east than he will out there. (But what do I know?…I’m not a traveler….so I keep my mouth shut).

“Who’s getting married in New York?” they’ve asked this week.
“You don’t know them.”
“Try me.”
“Meredith’s cousin.”
“Why are you going?”

Must I respond? I could, you know. First, though, let Arthur explain why a nice Jewish boy goes salmon fishing in Alaska. Wouldn’t Heinen’s be closer? Portions of a Wednesday breakfast were devoted to just this issue. Lester was ready, willing and able to meet Kraut in the parking lot at Cedar & Green and bring him a fishing pole. We figured he might just stand by the seafood counter and wait to hook something—like kids do with those big boxes of worthless toys at Chuck-E-Cheese. He’d save thousands annually!

And…most recently:

“Why are you going to Connecticut?” they inquire.
“It’s Aunt Lee’s and Uncle Ernie’s anniversary.”

Silence…that pregnant pause…. more silence. By now they know the “family tree” argument fails. Perhaps they figure I’m going to see Max. Does it really matter?

I could tell them that the Fanwicks were celebrating sixty years of marriage…and that they hadn’t missed a life cycle event in all those years…and I could marvel that not only did Uncle Ernie raise his glass in ‘72 at my Jersey rehearsal dinner, but that he’d toasted again, just this summer in Maryland? All of that, of course, would be true.

Or I could tell them that I’m one of those simple folk who when he hears at weddings that families are merging truly buys in. Also true.

Or better yet, I might boast of how Cousin Eric stroked my ego last month proclaiming “It wouldn’t be a Nathan Family event… “ if I wasn’t there.

Passing, though, I just smile at clowns with no dog in the fight—while inside I chuckle.  Wait ‘til they hear about the Walk For Pancreatic Cancer, I think. It’s in October at Jones Beach and I’m on Team Pearl. Perhaps, I’ll ask them to make a contribution.

Maybe that’ll shut them up.

4 Responses to “IT’S MY LIFE”

  1. Stuart says:

    You gotta go where you wanna go…..John Phillips

    You’ll remember all these trips…..Good luck Team Pearl

  2. aunt helen says:

    I did not know that you liked Minnie Pearl

  3. Jackie says:

    Good blog :) Good Bruce!

  4. ABL says:

    And you never know where or when you will meet someone, who will have a lifelong impact, if you don’t venture out……

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