We went up to Vail this weekend. Just a get out of town trip. It was and still is hot in Denver but somehow I don’t think we are alone in the heat. We still have a few friends (at least Kathy does) in the Valley, so were bumming with the best of them.
We had lived in Vail both full and part time for over twenty five years. It was a little like going home again. That myth was completely shattered by the first four hours, when we ran into absolutely no one whom we knew. So much for TTG.
We went to Country Club of the Rockies for some apps and a nice bottle of wine. The veranda looks north and the course and flowers were beyond beautiful. Your mind wanders to so many wonderful and good times. Great rounds. Not so great rounds but with buddies. Friends that have moved on. Friends that are no longer. Your kids as teens. Your stomach when it was flat. Wait a minute!
The verdant fairways and Darren Clarke got me thinking about Ireland. Listen to Irish music and you can slowly drift into melancholy. Hear the din of a pub and you are in the midst of a wonderful mayhem. Think of a windswept day at Lahinch. A beautiful Irish woman. The smiles. The laughter. I thought of all of this on that pretty porch.
Then it hit me! That SOB that infuriated me on one of those picture perfect days on that golf course in an August long ago. Both Irish to the core, we went toe to toe. We almost came to blows but he was much bigger than me. I am not that dumb
God knows what threw me into such a dither but I was reliving it all over again with the same fury as if it was yesterday. Sure we shook hands after the match but that meant nothing if you had any pride. My God I have Irish Alzheimers! ….You only remember the grudges.
I laughed at my reverie. I laughed at my self. How many hours over my life had I sat and let the negative flow come in? Oh man this was a good one. Just sit back and enjoy it. No, it wasn’t depression. It was normal, don’t you see ? What an fool. Irish but still a fool.
I remember once being in a good brood. It wasn’t the strength as much as the length of time. It warped all sense of reality and in time there was absolutely no way I could be wrong about anything.
A priest by the name of Lou Scurdy was saying an early Sunday mass. Lou had a beard that he thought likened himself to Jesus. That wasn’t the only reason Lou thought he had similar qualities to the Savior. But he was good as there was when it came to homilies.
The truth be told, the subject of my wrath was my brother. We were such good friends and then we were so far apart. When you deal with family it only amps it up a notch. The reverend duly outlined the real tragedy of grudges and the precious time lost in this game of life. From that day on I set about healing the wound. We talked. No admission of wrong by either side. We just let it go away.
As I watch this mess or another unfold, I am fascinated by how two three or four people can look at a seemingly forthright situation and see it in an entirely in an entirely different way. As I listen to all the recitals of a litany of grievances, I really wonder if we are talking about the same thing.
Italian women give you the look. Jewish women bitch and scream Oy Vey. Irish women go stone cold silent. Not a word. They also busy themselves. They make the beds three times. They scrub the tub with Bon Ami until the porcelain wears thin. I don’t want to talk about it.
Irish men on the other hand make believe nothing is awry. A smile and a handshake and seething inside. It takes around six pints to get them to put a crack in the door of their psyche. Another six will get you into a discussion of sorts. The last six has you hugging each other and supporting each other from falling or breaking into all out fisticuffs. If he tells you he loves you, head for the door.
This disease is not limited to the Erin Isle. Germans, Greeks, Turks, Norsemen, Danes. All suffer from the malady today. From the looks of things we may have a pandemic on our hands. Let’s at least try to stem the spread of the virus.
I am really going to try and drink the Kool Aid. I am going to try and mend my ways. Maybe I will just call up and say hello. Maybe I will try to be a bigger man. Maybe not waste any more time and energy. There is only so much left. Thank you all for being out there. And please answer the phone even if I call collect.
Ted The Great
Ireland has a population of around 4.7 million. The diaspora of those who claim roots to Ireland is around 50 million.
In the past 20 years the consumption of alcohol has decreased in northern Europe. It has increased a like amount in Ireland.
It’s not the custom in Ireland to wear green ties, hats or other green clothes on St. Patrick’s Day. A sprig of shamrock in the coat lapel is the preferred display. At the end of the day you drown the shamrock in Irish whiskey. Cheers.