What are You? Nuts?

What are you? Nuts?
I would love to tell you that no one has ever asked me that question but it would be a downright lie. I take great delight in the outrageous. Maybe if I was younger and had hair it would be purple. I don’t think nipple or nose piercing would be my style.

I do like my creature comforts. Warm and fuzzy ain’t bad. But I really do love being a little outspoken or nutty. The real question is there a little bit of that in all of us? I happen to think there is.

Growing up, conformity was always the norm. Stay inside the lines is the mantra for any child unless he was born to hippies. Sit up straight and fix your tie. What tie? Of course you wore a tie.

Tell your grandmother or aunt how nice she looked even though she didn’t quite fit your idea of heaven and the smell of that old lady powder was suffocating. Especially when they gave you a bear hug. Grandpa or some uncle had hair growing out of his ears. But don’t you dare say a word. Ah yes, I was a perfect child. I always smiled on cue.

I really think I owe my spirit of inner freedom to the Jesuits. I had eight years of them and relish them all dearly. What? You mean I don’t have to agree with you? You were taught to question and internalize a concept rather that repeat it verbatim. It was like I was on crack cocaine. Always have been.

Many times it was a high wire act. You got out there and then said okay smart ass how are you going to get yourself back? That is where I truly developed my expert faculty of the art of bullshitting.

So here I am today and I am really dangerous. To start with, the younger generation loves me because they know they will not get a canned answer. Parents hate me. You told him or her what? It is not only the beauty of youth but for all of us.

There are no right answers. Look at the market today. We have had a myriad of financial experts tell us this or that. Sooner or later they are right but it causes untold angst. I am adding a totally new meaning to the term “Blind Trust”.

I think people are all too willing to be secularized and compartmentalized. They think they are captains of their own ship but really are not. They want to be red and conservative or blue and liberal. I live in a red state that last month was blue. Forget about the fact that the difference is only a few thousand votes.

In other words gang, I am making a New Year’s resolution…. A few days early. I am going to defy description. Imagine that. Maybe I can say some things you would like to. Maybe I can just get people to think.

I now have the blog. You can tell me not to send it to your kids. Not sure I will listen. But always tell me what you think. And if you get tired of it in blog style, you don’t have to look at it. I will never know.

As for being nuts? Come on in. The water is fine.

As always,

Ted The Great


Christmas In The City

Christmas in the City.
We do Christmas on odd years. One year the kids visit family far and away and one year they are here. This year is our turn. It was 68 in Denver yesterday and a little of the spirit was missing. But true to form in Colorado it will be snowing outside and I am in front of the fire with a couple of fingers of Middletons.
I am prone at this point to think of Christmas’ past but this is the new beginning of Ted’s Head or whatever. I talked to an old friend tonight. He is in Vail skiing and I hope to be part of the crowd on Friday. Other friends from Hawaii and Providence have checked in. Now there are two ends of the earth.

I love to talk to friends which is why I write. As this progresses, I hope not to pontificate or make spurious calls to action. If I do, forgive me I am in a cross between a horribly sober analysis of where we are and yet an undying optimistic view of the future. I hope neither gets in the way of Ted‘s Head.

I have taken to walking about this wonderful metropolis, two or three times a week. I am talking about serious road time of 7-8 miles at a clip. It is fascinating to wade into neighborhoods and commercial districts of all description.

Of course I say hello and wave to any and all. I have taken great note of Christmas decorations of all description. Some people are off the charts, but rather than gauche it is a testament of who we are. You can change ethnic and economic gears in a matter of one or two blocks. Do your thing.

More importantly it goes beyond the big and fancy to the simple and understated. To each person or family it is their idea of heaven. Whether it is a Denver Square, rambling mansion, townhouse or apartment, it is truly that person’s castle.

We have hundred of “bungalows” in Denver. They are built of brick or stone and range in size from 850-1300 square feet. They consist of two bedrooms and a bath on the first floor and a bed and bath in the basement. Enterprising couples pop the top to get more space and this all occupies a footprint lot of 8,000 square feet.

Doesn’t sound like much but families with 3-4 kids somehow have made it a place to grow up. Many of the neighborhoods are young couples starting out and empty nesters moving back into the city. Singles, gays, straights, lawyers, professors. It’s where we live.

In New York there were occasional glances in the elevator but please don’t talk to me. Never on the street. Avoid eye contact. Here everybody talks. On our Victorian built in1895, there is a wonderful front porch that is a little chilly this time of year. Some of you have been here and know its charm. Whether it is the morning paper and coffee or the requisite cigar and glass of red in the evening, it is a gathering place of sorts.

People stop and chat or at least say hello. Our cement goose is the talk of the town. We may make the focal point of our caroling this year. What is it? Six geese a laying. Well we only have one. No matter it will be a wonderful night on Christmas Eve.

As you all gather in places far and wide, we will be thinking of you. My good friend Steve will be saying his last Christmas mass at St Ignatius as he seeks new challenges in San Francisco next year. My widower friend and Navy buddy, Rick will be spending his first Christmas with his new wife, Donna Jean. My buddy Peter will be alone. We have all had transitions both good and bad.

I will think of nothing but the good in the week ahead. A young woman was hit by a car last week here in Denver. She was 34 weeks pregnant. All that was left was her broken body, dead baby and tire tracks on her stomach. The driver took off. How dare I think that I would ever have a problem in my life.

Kathy and I love you all in very special ways. We thank you for all the goodness you have brought to our lives. We are blessed. All of us.

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night.

Ted The Great