Tuesday, April 13, 2010

If Not Now, When?

There were some strange dreams last night, compliments of the sleeping pills I took before bed. [I can sense your eyes glazing over because other people's dreams are so damn boring. But I'll post whatever I want, because it's my blog.]

I dreamt of my best childhood friend, Angie--probably because I have been negligent and need to give her a call. I am overdue. I always dream of Angie when I am shitty about staying in touch. It's as if my soul says: Okay, enough, we need her, CALL!

I also dreamt of Frank Sinatra, playing the piano. He was middle-aged and was singing a song called If Not Now, When? I don't know whether that is an actual song or not. It could be. I could have picked it up subliminally from my grandparents' tremendous record collection and not realized it. I could never write standards, because I couldn't be sure if I was ripping some old songwriter off or not, due to the intensive childhood exposure to that sort of music. I guess I could Google the song title [I don't Bing. Bing sucks.], but I don't really care enough to pursue it.

Anyway, I wasn't sitting with Frank at the piano [what a thrill that would have been!]. I was just an observer. A fly on the wall. But somehow, I knew he was singing about Bobby Kennedy and the fact that he was dead prematurely and would never be president.

It's a strange thing to be an American and to be of a certain age. It must be even more strange to be old enough to actually remember the assassinations of JFK and RFK. John was shot before I was born, and Bobby was shot when I was only a toddler, so I have no real memory of the events, but I am still genetically wired to carry a specific grief over those two men, so much so that it comes forth in my dreams at times.

I have a theory that if you are an American of a certain age, you carry the two lost brothers, and their loss is so prevalent, that it is hard-wired into your very bones and cells. You carry them, but of course, nobody carried that load like their poor brother, Teddy, who is lost to us now as well. God bless him. I'm not particularly religious, but I feel compelled to say that whenever I remember certain people, and this includes the Kennedy brothers.

On a tangible level, I remember the morning the Moms awakened me to the news about JFK, Jr. I blinked the sleep from my eyes and sat up in bed as she announced that John Kennedy Jr.'s plane was missing. It was a bright sunny Ohio morning, and I was not too panicked initially, because I fully believed they would find John, sitting on an island somewhere or floating on a piece of aircraft debris. I counted on a hero's rescue and a good story that the media could glom onto when he ran for president one day. I didn't really entertain the thought that fate could be so cruel as to strike down another young Kennedy male with so much promise.

You know how that story came out. I carry that loss, too. It is a part of me, as much as the other brothers are, because John was my contemporary. I grieve his loss, and I feel pissed that John was cheated.

I have no real point to this post. Sorry to tell you that if you've made it this far. I just wanted to tell the story of my dream, and maybe in the telling, to partially exorcise the sadness of the morning. So far, it's not working.

I just feel grieved today, and I think the damn dream was the culprit.

10 comments:

Ms. Moon said...

Whoa, girl. When you put the pen to the paper, you can make it happen.
Lots to ponder there. You had a dream and then set it down and next thing you know, I am miles and miles away in Florida, thinking about where I was when all those Kennedys died and how I'm listening to a book on tape right now where they celebrate Frank Sinatra's birthday and it all somehow comes together in what you wrote AND in my mind and all I can say is- I want some of those pills.
You are loved, Ms. Bastard. And very smart. And a good writer and thanks for the dream.

Sarcastic Bastard said...

Ms. Moon,
Thank you for your kind words. I will NEVER EVER be even half the writer that you and May are. I know my place, and it's humor, baby. Laugh.

Love you so,

Me

Ms. Moon said...

Humor is the hardest and damn, don't I know it?
Sometimes I'll write a post and I'll think it's so SAD and then people will be all, "You crack me up!"
So yes, I can be funny too.
Just usually not when I mean to be.

Steph(anie) said...

I'm always amazed at how that sadness can stay with you after a dream.

The loss of JFK Jr. was an unbelievable blow after everything else. Unreal and truly unfair.

Sarcastic Bastard said...

Steph,
Yes, I'm with you.

Love you much.

Syd said...

I was there for all of them, even though a little kid for JFK. I don't think that we ever forget the horror of those days.

Jennifer Rains said...

I was not born either for JFK, but I will never forget when his son disappeared that day...it was a beautiful summer day for me also...and a sad one.
I often thought about him when Obama was running for pres...John Jr. would have been a year or two older, this would have been his time I think. Race over--Hilary, Barrack, who cares...it would have been John...

Love ya dearly. This was a nice heart felt post and to the point.

Jenn

Sarcastic Bastard said...

Thanks, Jenn. I love you dearly, too!

Jeannie said...

What do you mean other people's dreams are boring? I dreamt last night that I had my dildo but couldn't find my lube anywhere. (I have never owned or used a dildo although I'm thinking maybe I should if I'm dreaming about it)

I remember JFK's and Martin Luther King's funerals. I was very put out because all the kid's shows were pre-empted for these American people I'd never heard of and couldn't have cared less about. The endless funeral procession. The huge crowds. Black and white tv.

Petit fleur said...

Things like that happen when it is the anniversary of someone's death. My subconscious knows the date, even if my memory fails me. It's an eerie feeling.

I'm wired to love the Kennedy's too. And though I was only a child, I do remember the sadness and loss of hope when RFK was assassinated.

Hope you feel better soon,
pf