Why I’m Thankful for Caller ID

Leaf

I’m not avoid­ing my moth­er, but I get tense when I see her on my caller ID late­ly.

We tend to stay in touch by email more than by phone, and if she calls it usu­al­ly means that there’s some­thing that can’t wait on email. We’ve lost five mem­bers of our extend­ed fam­i­ly since Octo­ber 2. We had absolute­ly no warn­ing with two of those peo­ple. One was a young teen.

So as much as I love my moth­er, every time I pick up the phone to talk to her now I’m expect­ing bad news.

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R.I.P. Uncle J

Uncle J was buried yes­ter­day. He hung on for weeks, and they’d final­ly moved him to home hos­pice care just a few days before he passed. At least he wasn’t in pain at the end, and the fam­i­ly did get to say what­ev­er they need­ed to say.

Mom is tak­ing this real­ly hard. She says it’s con­cern for Aunt B, and I’m sure that’s part of it. I can’t being to imag­ine the agony of los­ing your spouse of 48 years. I have to think, though, that some of it is Mom’s fear that it may be Dad­dy next time. I’m wor­ried about her.

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Please Think About Sam

His father died last night. He didn’t want any kind of funer­al. We’re going to see his mom.

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R.I.P. “Dad” Ward

A friend of my family’s, Claude “Dad” Ward, who worked with my father for many years, died this week. He was a good man, and he’ll be missed.

He wasn’t my father, but every­body who knew him called him “Dad.” I don’t think I even heard his giv­en name for the first ten or fif­teen years that I knew him.

He had bat­tled myas­the­nia gravis for years, but what final­ly got him was weird–tuberculosis from a spi­der bite. After Dad­dy told me that, I thought he must have mis­heard some­thing, so I Googled it–and yep, there are oth­er cas­es of that hap­pen­ing.

I’ll think of him every time I see an Airedale or a rac­coon 🙂

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Diane Duane Rocks

The Sword and the DragonBack when the Meisha Mer­lin ware­house was being cleaned out, Sam picked up a copy of The Sword and the Drag­on, first vol­ume of the Epic Tales of the Five by Diane Duane that MM put out. It con­tains The Door Into Fire and The Door Into Shad­ow.

The Door Into FireI’ve want­ed my own copies of the first three Tales of the Five books for decades, since read­ing an old friend’s copies. I’m still dis­ap­point­ed that MM nev­er put out the next vol­ume, which should have includ­ed The Door Into Sun­set and the nev­er-before-pub­lished The Door Into Starlight. But then, there are oth­er peo­ple who have far more rea­son to be dis­ap­point­ed about MM mat­ters than I do, so I can’t fuss too much. And I have this vol­ume, and will con­tin­ue to hold out hope that Duane will find a new pub­lish­er who will bring out the oth­ers some­time in my life­time.

The Door Into ShadowAny­way, I had to stop read­ing to show this bit to Sam. It sums up much of what I love about Duane’s phi­los­o­phy.

…death is inevitable. But we have one pow­er, as men and beasts and crea­tures of oth­er planes. We can slow down the Death, we can die hard, and help all the worlds die hard. To live with vig­or, to love pow­er­ful­ly and with­out car­ing whether we’re loved back, to let loose build­ing and teach­ing and heal­ing and all the arts that try to slow down the great Death. Espe­cial­ly joy, just joy itself. A joy flares bright and goes out like the stars that fall, but the lit­tle flare it makes slows down the great Death ever so slight­ly. That’s a tri­umph, that it can be slowed down at all, and by such a sim­ple thing.

The Door Into Sunset

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R.I.P. Arthur C. Clarke

We lost anoth­er great writer and thinker today. CNN seems to be updat­ing their sto­ry on his death by the minute. There’s no con­tro­ver­sy, but from the first ver­sion or two you’d think the only thing the man had ever done of note was co-write the screen­play for 2001: A Space Odyssey.

I know that he came up with more than just the idea of com­mu­ni­ca­tions satel­lites, but at this very moment I can’t remem­ber his oth­er non-fic­tion con­tri­bu­tions to the world. I’m sad, but 90 years is a good, long run.

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