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(with the hope that everyone in my family will think about making a similar list before their birthdays and/or Christmas roll around!)
NANA, SHE AIN'T!
22 February 2006
Remember Nana? She was the St. Bernard who lived with the Darling family in Peter Pan. Nana took care of the children, brought them their medicines, tucked them in at night, and in general kind of ran the house.
Sheila is no Nana.
In the Lad a Dog books (by Albert Payson Terhune), which I devoured as a child, there is one short story calleld "Quiet!" In the story, "The Mistress" has come down with some terrible illness. All the dogs are banned from the house, but Lad is allowed to remain. "The Master" tells Lad he needs to be quiet and Lad, being the wonderful, intelligent dog that he is, lies outside of "The Mistress's" bedroom, not moving, not eating, keeping watch for days, until the doctor gives her the all clear--then he goes on a joyous spree all across the grounds of "The Place."
Sheila is no Lad.
Throughout the morning yesterday, I began to feel worse and worse, but I was too excited about all the DVD burning I was doing to pay much attention. But I finally got a tape dubbing and knew I had 2 hours to kill, so I decided to take a nap. That was around 11 a.m. and I don't think I really got up again until 5 a.m. this morning. I had coughing spasms that went on so long I could hardly catch my breath. I went through a box of Kleenex. Everything ached. My fever got to a little over 101. I went in and out of this haze where it seemed like ice dancing went on for 24 hours because whenever I opened one bleary eye, there was either live coverage or a news report or rerun.
The weirdest thing was that I was aware that I moaned a lot. But the moaning was part of my trying to speak in whatever dream I was having (and the dreams all seemed so vivid at the time), and it came out as an indistinct moan, which then woke me up. There was one point when I had a feeling that this must be what it's like to have a stroke and have your speech affected--my brain was clear, but the words I was trying to say wouldn't come out.
How do you know when Bev is really sick? She has no interest in food. None. Oh, if only the flu could have lasted a full week! I had a small piece of the pizza Maria sent home with us Sunday night, but I had to choke down the second half of it--which upset me because it is her unique "Punjabi pizza," which I love.
And how did Sheila react to all this stuff? Well, any time I coughed, struggling to catch my breath, bent over, trying not to pee on myself, she would bring me a toy to throw for her. When I struggled to my feet to stagger down the hall to the bathroom, she danced around me happily--Oh goodie! She's UP! She will now take me out to run with my friends! If I'd been asleep and started waking up, she would do her happy food dance--I had one eye open. That obviously meant I was going to feed her.
Damn dog. It's all about her. What about pathetic me?
The good thing is that I feel like I've come back to life this morning. The fever was down to 100 and I had a terrible headache, so I took an aspirin, which has eliminated the headache and brought the fever all the way down. I think I'm going to live.
Even if I didn't have Nana or Lad to help me.
Before I got so sick yesterday, one of the videos I dubbed onto DVD was Paul's show, "Sedona, Arizona." In 1996, after David died, Paul put on his first monologue show, "Morbid Self-Attention," where he charged his friends to come to the theatre and listen to him talk about his favorite subject: himself and what he had been feeling since David's death.
There were other monologue shows and the last was Sedona, Arizona, Paul's search for spirituality. There are mixed feelings among the family about these shows, but the one thing that is undeniable--the kid knew how to reach an audience. There was a lot of Spalding Gray in him.
Sedona received a wonderful response from everyone who saw it. It is funny, sad, emotional, powerful. You laugh one minute and cry another.
The response to Sedona was so positive that Paul decided to film it and try to market it. He did the show for an audience and filmed it and the plan was to add music in between the various segments of the show. In fact, the morning of his death, he had called band members to set up a recording session to work on the music for the show.
Well, Paul never had a chance to try to market Sedona, Arizona but now that I have it on DVD, I decided to post it on the Internet. There are 8 different segments and I'm going to post one segment a day. I think the first one is the weakest, the 5th one is the most emotional. But the whole thing is still very good and each segment runs from 5 to 10 minutes in length.
So today, I'm posting Sedona, Arizona, Part 1,
in which Paul discusses barbershops and introduces his search for spirituality.
PHOTO OF THE DAY
Photo by Peggy