small brush shouldn't fuck with big timber

Death's Door, the view from the Spanish announcers table: <strong>sweatin the small stuff</strong>

Friday, January 28

sweatin the small stuff

This will be a special edition of “sweatin the small stuff” dedicated to the memory of my father who passed away three years ago to the day. So I’m throwing up some old posts I did around then.

Favorite quote of my life
“it ain’t fightin that’ll get your ass kicked, it’ll be me kickin your ass if I ever catch you walkin away from one”
Willie Beck.

My father died last week and I guess that’s that. It was everything I never expected, harsh, sad, surreal, and empty. I was with my mother and sister that day at the hospital before they took him away to surgery. My father was in a hard sleep all morning and kept fading in and out of reality. You know my mother and father were married for forty-five years, and they also grew up together as kids in a small town in West Texas? Even though my father was out of it he would always turn in whatever direction in the hospital room my mother’s voice was coming from. It reminded me of a sunflower always turning toward the sun. After they wheeled him off to surgery we all split up for a few hours. My sister said that she would call me later that night and tell me how everything went, so I went and ran a few errands and ended up in front of the TV. I kept watchin the clock cause I knew about what time they expected him out of surgery. But suddenly I got the oddest feeling and it seemed that I couldn’t get across town fast enough.

I got to the hospital and tried to find my family but no luck, I actually ended up coolin my heels in the wrong waiting room for almost two hours till my sister found me and took me to the right one. We were sitting there when the doctor came in and told us that the surgery went fine and they were takin him to recovery and that we could all see him in a bit. Then after some time the doctor came back in and told us that they lost him, he was gone. You know that huge hollow booming sound a large bell makes? That’s how I felt on the inside. Everything went to slow motion as I watch my mother and sister break down. I felt so helpless cause there was nothing I could do or say to ease their grief, then time speeded back up and I heard myself thanking the doctor for all that he’d done. They were all going to see the body but I couldn’t face my father that way so I left.

He would’a dug the funeral cause as an ex cop he got the package with all the works. If you were a crack dealer and happened to be living on my mother’s street the morning of the funeral you would’a shit yourself cause there were at least a dozen police cars blocking all the traffic in front of my mother’s house. In his honor the family got the full police escort to the funeral home, along with an honor guard and pallbearers. I gotta admit the old man picked a hell of a week to go out, with the weather going bad and all that. Even the church had no power, but it was cool. There was something fitting about him going out during the harshest week of the year and having the funeral by candlelight.

He looked good and all his family was there, and gathered all around were the Old Guard, a bunch of steely-eyed old men who were all the cops from back in the day. Something else I thought was cool, the cat that owned the funeral home and took care of my father’s body was a cop from back in the day who worked with the old man, and The good Reverend Ron who spoke over my father and was also Pastor of the church is best buddies with my brother and has known my father since he was a kid. Kind of a full circle thing I think. You know I could speak about him for hours but I’ll say this and let em go. I am and always will be a reflection of my father. He once told me that he understood me and what I’m all about more then I gave him credit for. He saw a lot of me in him and I saw a lot of him in me and that’s ok. I’ve yet to shed a tear over him cause I just can’t, but I know he understands. Willie Beck. 1937-2002

And on a lighter note I’ve been asked do I have any good stories about my father. Well if you were to walk into my mother’s house and look into the family photo album you’d eventually come to a photo of my father in his twenties. It’s not very flattering and it’s not your normal family touchy-feely kind of thing but it’s a cool representation of his outlook on life. It’s a photo of his face all fucked up and shit after a severe ass kickin that he worked hard to earn one night whilst on the job.

Here’s what happened or at least the way it was run down to me. It was during the time of the race riots just after Martin Luther King was gunned down and shit was fucked up here, as it was everywhere else. The old man was new to his life as a cop and was pullin a patrol during dog shift when he saw this large crowd gathered around this doorway and he went over to see what the deal was. What was going on was a group of the local hoods throwing craps on the sidewalk. Well the old man dug his job and he figured this shit had to go, so he walked into the middle of it all and told muthafucker’s to hit the skids or get the shit kicked out of em and win a free ride to the hoosegow.

I figured the old man must’a run out of fingers counting heads cause he was kind’a out numbered and shit. But true to form he had no back up to his ass and he waded on in and the fight was on. The way the story goes shit turned into a regular pier-six brawl and cops came running in from all over. When the dust settled the old man had gotten his share of getting his ass kicked but by all accounts gave as good as he got.

The whole shittin mess ended up at the police station and whilst booking everybody they stuck the old man into a room to cool off and get his hurts treated. But much to the chagrin of all the other cops, on the other end of the room were some of the hoods from the fight waiting to be questioned. The Old Man was never much for missing a good opportunity so into the fray once more he stepped. More ass kickin ensued and the legend was off to a running start, and some of you gots to wonder where I inherited my lovin attitude on life.

"and the monkey flipped the switch"


Anonymous Anonymous said...

My dad ain't gone yet, but his dad is.

Funny how things like this can affect you. My dad didn't cry at the funeral, it was about two months later. We were digging fence post holes back home... He just stopped digging and started crying. I asked him what was wrong. He said, back when he was about 9 yrs old he was digging fence post holes with his dad. My dad, messin' around, accidently hit his dad with the fence post digger, dunno how exactly. My grandpa smacked my dad upside the head pretty hard and cussed him out. My dad said it was an accident. After about 30 minutes of silent digging, my grandpa stopped digging and told my dad he was sorry for hitting him so hard and that he loved him. That was the only time my dad rememebred his dad saying he loved him... besides when granpa was on his death bed.

Anyways... thanks for sharing.
I've added your blog to my daily reads, I am enjoying it.


12:33 PM  
Blogger Death said...

you're welcome, do you have a site?

1:06 PM  
Blogger me said...

Ok Greg, you gave me a whole new idea from your last comment on my blog that led to a nice long read for ya, lol.


1:30 PM  
Blogger satyavati said...

...this made me cry.. not one of those hysterical cryings, just a quiet sad crying.. i've seen a lot of death, and although maybe you can get to the point where you learn different perspectives on it, you never can get to a point where you feel less than helpless in the face of others' grief.
It sounds so stupid to say I love you but I do.. I think a blog, you can get to know someone maybe in ways you might never get to know them even if you worked side by side with them for years or sat with them in a bar every night for years or whatever.. blogs are different.. blogs are inside, not outside... does any of that even make sense? Anyway, I guess you know what I mean.

2:03 PM  
Blogger Nightmare said...

That is a great story man, I really enjoyed all of it.

9:26 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wonderful story. My father was worthless. I missed a lot.

4:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, I have a site, but I don't publicize it.


7:10 AM  
Blogger SmedRock said...

Damn. One hell of a man he is. I know how you feel, and that quote, I might have to borrow that of I ever have a son.

As usual, keep up the good fight.

7:37 PM  

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