Thursday, October 29, 2015

He gave to me a gift I know I never can repay

I got a letter yesterday from the government explaining that my personal information was stolen from a database they maintained. It was information the gubmint collected doing background checks on me to, wait for it, potentially work for the NSA (among other things). I had a good chuckle at that.

Also, road comics don't exactly have booming bank accounts or stellar credit so, good luck fuckfaces.

Onto today's dribble...

Union Station in Los Angeles
I still haven't gone to my dad's gravesite yet. He died almost nine years ago. I have this thing I believe about people who die, namely, they aren't hanging out at the cemetery. I've buried a lot of friends and family over the years and a long time ago I realized I don't feel fuck all when I stand at their grave sites. When I want to feel close to someone I lost I go to places that make me feel closer to them, places that are them.

LA's Union Station is one of those places that make me feel closer to my dad. No, not because either of us were train nerds. Because it was, in a way, his final destination just like it is for all the Metrolink trains. His career started mopping and waxing floors for MTA and ended with him working on the 21st floor in a high rise at one end of the Union Station building.

So, while TGB was getting her latest tattoo, I dragged my friend Charlie (a train nerd) to downtown LA and showed her Union Station. I didn't tell her it was more for me than for her.

An Englishwoman in LA
She took pictures, I played tour guide and told her a little about my dad.

For the last few years of dad's life he would get up and take the train from Upland into Union Station. He'd get off his train and walk to Union Station East (where Charlie is standing), take the stairs and head into the MTA high rise. I could smell him. More than once I thought I heard his big laugh.

It was good to have a friend there. It kept me from getting lost in my own world. It let me see things from another pair of eyes. There was something oddly reassuring about seeing someone from the other side of the globe so enamored with a place that means so much to me.

This building in this town... without either of them I do not exist. Without either of them, a high school dropout, child raising a child, does not have the opportunity to provide a life for himself and his kids.

I arrived with a swelling of the heart and I left with a sense of gratitude.

And yes, I took Charlie to other places.
Titty sprinkles.