Friday, January 29, 2016

A Long Time Comin'

It is difficult to explain a life, especially one's own.  You've only a fraction of the time that's past behind you to figure it out, it seems an insoluble equation.  And yet, here I am trying to do just that, explain a life, namely my own.

There are places - or are they times? - where you can see the all of something - the all of what you are allowed to see, at least - the completion.

I am never sure where a story begins or ends.  It is my great fault as a storyteller.  In linear time this all has a specific beginning on a stormy porch in Mason forty-some years ago.  But, my understanding of this all came staring down a bright fire, glass in hand, tear in eye, just the other night

Should I work backward to reach the spark that started it all or work forward to reveal the glowing embers of understanding?  I mentioned this is my great fault, didn't I?


You might remember the great screened in porch at the western end of the brick ranch I grew up in.  The porch looked off towards valleys and fields and barns and sunsets and storms.  Although I was initially afraid of storms, my dad explained the science - speed of light, speed of sound, the elegance of electricity's polarity, grounded lightning rods in the shape of roosters, decibels and candlepower, and wind sheer - and I came to appreciate them... sorta.

Summer storms often serve up a harbinger wind before they come in.  If you saw one coming in the distance, you could be sure that you could get a breeze on your salty, September sweat.

We saw a storm brewing off in the distance just south of the sun hurrying down.  It was after dinner and Dad and I went out on the porch to catch the breeze see what might come of it.

But, that storm stalled, not a mile away, and that early breeze whispered off.  The storm just sat, each threatening cloud roiling and lifting upwards and back into itself like gray cotton candy.  Right at the line where it all fell back into itself in deeper grays and blacks, the lightning flashed bright white, the blue shadows flashed in the clouds like steel buttresses supporting the tall thunderheads.  And, it sat there like a cathedral, ominous and sacred.

Dad stood, a scotch on the rail, a pipe in his mouth, cupping a match, not against the wind, but out of habit, ritual.  He gazed out, puffing, grey smoke matching the sky.

"This storm's a long time comin'..." 

He said it to me, or the storm, or himself.

Suddenly, the citadel of a storm fell, and it roared on towards us, picking up speed, intensifying - aiming, it almost seemed.  The lightning blinded, the thunder deafened, the rain pelted.  Trees bent in the wind like supplicants in the strobe flashes from the nearly constant lightning.

I looked at my dad and I understood something for the first time.  He stood, pipe clenched between his teeth, head high, back straight, scotch secure in hand, laughing at it all.  His face was wet and his glasses were dotted with rain.  He looked wild and happy and I understood that wildness was for everyone - not just for boys.

"... a long time comin,'" he shouted above the storm, elongating the word like a wolf's howl.  I understood his inference even in the crazy wind and din of the storm - it is worth waiting and it will be rewarded.  The longer the wait, the better.  Stillness begets wildness.

I sit here now and try to figure how old I may have been in this scene.  It's funny, sometimes rich details and emotion can obscure the edges of a memory, render it timeless, frameless.  It is also funny that - and, you know, this just occurred to me, and it feels important - you don't really see yourself in your memories, you're not on the stage, you are both audience and narrator.  So, I can't see which glasses I had on or whether my cheeks were chubby or thin or what shoes I has wearing.

I'm gonna guess eleven or twelve, a little older than my boys are now.

I have long employed storms and weather and seasons in my storytelling.  Not always as the central theme or central image, but, often enough.

Four, maybe, years later I decided that I would take a shot at writing a song.  I was enamored of the singer-songwriters that I was listening to - Croce, Taylor, Denver, Lightfoot, Prine, Clark, and, of course, Dylan - and felt I could.

It is not a very good song.

I'd guess I typed it up on my mom's IBM Selectric in 1976 or '77.  I haven't seen this in years and I haven't played it in decades... well, until just now, I sorta felt I had to.  I suppose I could tell you some more details about it, but, examining teenage angst and sophomoric lyrics is not my reason for showing this.  No, it's the rain imagery.

Ten, eleven, years later I was living in New York City, Queens, and I decided to have a go at poetry.  I wrote, among others, this poem:

It's not a very good poem.  Again, not the point.  I remember writing it in an apartment in Astoria watching a storm come up.  My makeshift desk looked out upon the cityscape - the backside of it, in honestly.  The alleys and antennas and clotheslines and water tanks and buildings and buildings and buildings, so different than the fields and woods of home.  But, the wind blew through the screens and whipped the rain like wheat fields, the lightning cracked and flashed blue high in the high Ohio Valley thunderheads, and, well, it all mixed up in my head.  I saw the metaphor of it all, the ones my dad had alluded to - storms and life and anticipation, fear and hope, time and stillness, the calm, the wild.

Let's move on down - or up or across or through - the timeline to 1997.  I lived in a nice little, pastel yellow two-family house in Oakley, on Brazee Avenue, as I recall.  I had the bottom apartment.  It was a funny little setup; a living-room, a small bedroom, a kitchen along the back with a small cement porch and, a peculiarly large dining-room with a bay window that looked out upon nothing but a driveway and my neighbor's kitchen.

I had a desk - a door spanning two black filing cabinets - against one wall and a fairly large dining-room table in the unnecessary bay window.  The desk held the first computer I'd ever owned and a printer with which I'd just finished writing the novel I'd spent a year on.  It - the novel - sat waiting for whatever was next.  I didn't know... I still don't.

Painting in acrylics had long been something I dabbled in.  Poorly conceived, bright, unapologetic abstracts; big, clownish, ungainly things.  I had a closet full of them.  I knew they weren't very good, but I genuinely enjoyed the thought and effort and craft of it all and, well, before the internet, a fellow had a lot of time on his hands.  I am forever grateful for that time.

I liked thick, right-off-the-palette-knife strokes and I'd been working on two dark and stormy canvasses.  I would paint something over them, I wasn't sure what.

I took care of the lawn at this little house and the mower was in the two car garage out back.  It was a derelict old building and the cars stayed away.  There was a lot of junk crowded into it, boxes and old furniture, mystery items, defunct lawn chairs... you know.  That afternoon I noticed a wooden bin built into the far back corner of the garage.  What looked like wooden frames were sticking out of it in different sizes.  I'd been painting earlier that morning and I thought, incorrectly, that they might be canvasses.

It was all the old storm and screen windows for the house, windows long ago replaced by new double-paned ones of plastic and vinyl.  The glass storm windows were mostly cracked or missing the glass altogether.  The screens were broken and torn, old patches bending off, rusting and crumbling as screens will untended.  I wondered why they were still here - they seemed so purposeless.

In the center of the the rack one screen rose taller than the others.  I pulled it out and it all came to me at once.  It was fairly intact, only rusting around the bottom edge.  It was thick with grime and mouse droppings and dust turned to dirt over time.

I didn't get the lawn mowed that day, not for a couple.  I cleaned the screen up and painted it black and hand lettered the words to a poem, blowing them up, line by line on the computer, and printing the templates and mounting them on the underside of the screen and, carefully, stroke by stroke, painting the words in titanium white.  I used the words to the poem I told you about earlier.

I worked hard on it, devoted way too much time to it, and when I finished, I hung the whole thing on a wall in the oversized dining-room.  People liked it.  I liked it.  It was up at the apartment I moved to from that one, the one where I met Marci, and we had it in what would become the boys' room when we moved into this house.  It's been in the basement since they were born.

Remember earlier when I asked should I work forwards or back?  Well, this is where I'd have started if I'd've gone the other way.

Recently, an old friend of mine mentioned it: "... do you remember a screen you had on which you'd stenciled the words to a poem? Any chance you remember the poem? Was it one of yours"

I do, dear soul, and, yes, it was one of mine.  And thank you from the bottom of my soul for remembering it, for reminding me of it, for returning it to its place in this story... my story.

I got it out to show you, to show my thoughtful companion, to show Nick and Zack, to show myself.  I couldn't find a wall to accommodate it.  I tried setting it up on the floor but I couldn't get a good picture of it.  I finally looked outside, the wind was whipping up, storm clouds grayed the sky and the shed called to me, as sheds so often do...

So, that's it.  That's the "all" of it.  Stories spiraling backwards twisting with those going forward, like a double helix, meeting here and there, sharing, mingling, entwining with one another, forming a whole...

... for now.

Listen, life is the long game.  Life is in the waiting, in the spaces between the words, between the notes, between the breaths.  The best storms are a long time coming.  I'm glad for that.

Peace to you.  I've kept you far too long, I know you must be running off.  Thanks for stopping by.

Friday, January 22, 2016

I Am But A Bear

I am but a bear, not even a fur and bone bear, I am a stuffed bear. I am brown, or tan, and I have a red bow-tie. I guess it is red, I don't really see colors very well, except in the eyes of childrens.

I am the size of a newforn child. I have never met a newforn. I have seen them in the arms of the Big Ones. I have moved on because of one. They can't see us right. Babies can. And, of course the childrens can see us right.

I understand some things about the grownout world. It is where the children end up. I do not understand numbers or time. I see patterns. One light-to-light might be called a "day" to you Big Ones. To us it could be all of everything. It could be our only time with a children. From one coldtime to the next coldtime we spend under a bed seems an instant, which is also a forever... it is hard to explain.

I am not good with names. I try and try to believe that things are called other than what they are. That you Big Ones have labeled everything there is. That is a very brave thing to do, I think. So, I do not know what we are called. Because I am not good with names.

There are other-ones-like-me. A kitten used to be with me here. She said her labelname was "Kitty." It was because she was. I work very hard to remember her. She was smart and kind. She had to go finally.  She waited in a box and talked with me for a some part of time I don't know. And then she stopped answering my questions. I knew she moved on. It is sad for me right now to think of. And, I am a happy bear, mostly. She was a callicoed kitten. She gave a labelname to us, she called us Stuffers.

She called me BearBear because I am. My Boy calls me that. I can understand it. It is not too very hard to remember. My boy says it a lot. I don't always remember the name that is for My Boy. It sounds sizzly like a bacon noise. My Boy likes bacon. He likes the smell of it and the way it makes him feel loved. I can taste and feel it, too, because he can.

I am from Inbetween. I cannot understand the labelnames and the numbers and you cannot understand where I am from. Where I am, actually, now. Always. We live - exist is the word? - in Inbetween. I don't mean to say that Big Ones are not smart enough to get where we are, some do.

I am not made to be very smart. I'll try to explain it as best I can. I am made to listen, to emptysize - you know, when you take the hurt off another and leave them emptied of it so they can fill up again with better different stuff. I do pay attention, though. I listen, I can read, not the letters as you call them, but because each word is what it is and...

Oh my, this is getting complicated and I am but a bear.

Here is what I think. The Big Ones get into Inbetween when they love and cherish a children, specially their own. I see you so close to me when you pray. Your laughing and singing goes to Inbetween. Gods and Demons are from Inbetween. It is where everything starts and everything ends. It is where Guardian angels and wood sprites and cherubs and fairies wait until they are needed.

I am not saying any of this right.

My Boy is made of flesh and blood. He fell once where he goes when he is not here, and had to get some skitches. He was scared but it didn't hurt very much. The Furry Big One was with him and they talked about funny things. My Boy calls him something like Dad. Is that right?

This is what I think happened. The Furry Big One, Dad?, loves My Boy very much. So much that he sometimes sees me for what I am. I can feel his love for me. He looks for me when I am lost and hugs me just right. He puts me in my vest that the Twinkling Big One made me to make My Boy happy. It is very handsome. He talks to me. I think he loves me as a children loves me. This means I can be with him sometimes.

Oh my. There is so much explainings to tell you and I don't know how to tell you. I am not really sure who you are. I don't know where or when I am right now. I am always without the when and the where, Inbetween is like that, but you Grownouts like to know that stuff. I can see everywhere My Boy goes. I can go back to anywhere My Boy has been, even without him. What he calls memries are in what you call past but it is always my now.

Most Stuffers don't understand this sort of thinking. They are happy, content is it?, to just be always now. Some of us last only a short time. I am lucky, I have seen My Boy get bigger and bigger and have been with him for many of your years. That's why I can use the words so goodly.

Once a children sees us, we can see through them. We can see what they see. We can have the feelings they are having. We can see inside their heads, as you might say, but truly, inside their heads is Inbetween.

I was trying to say something. I will tell a story. The Furry... no, dad, was cleaning My Boy's room. He shares the room with the other My Boy, Kitty's boy. He's only seen me once and I doubt he remembers. I was very lost and he found me stuffed into a long chair. He said, Oh! BearBear, here you are! He saw me, as I am. I could see him seeing me and I could see his face. The joy, the happy. I saw how he loved the other My Boy. I could feel his emptysizing, his hope. It is a good memry.

Bears are not good storytellers. Perhaps if I tell it in the now.

Dad is picking things up and moving them. Under many things there is a piece of curvy leather with tiny holes all around the edge.

He is about to throw it away. It is in the hand of the other throwaway stuff.

Oh, please don't throw that away, My Boy loves it.

I am with the dad now. Really, we are together in Inbetween. I know he goes there, often on his knees. We have been together here before. My Boy's dad understands me and stops. He remembers the story. He'd forgotten it. I didn't.

The thing is a half of a baseball outside. My Boy finds it in the back of the yard. The dad knows he likes it, but he doesn't understand the all of it. It is not a just strangely shaped piece of leather. It is more than that.

The dad and I, together, piece together the parts together. I know My Boy loves it. I know he is happy when it is in his hand. The dad remembers games and tossing and catches and hits. He remembers mud and lightning and joy. And I am back at the now of each moment. We both come to understand at the same time. It is not the piece of leather that matters, it is all that it brings with it.

It is a talisman, he thinks.  I don't know the word but I know exactly what it means.

He glances at me. I look very smart in the vest he just put on me. I feel him wink, feather soft on me, and he smiles.

I think we better keep this, BearBear.

I laugh.

He hears me... again.

Goodbye.  I might come back again.  I'd like that.

Friday, January 15, 2016

Snow Daze

I have stopped hundreds of times, hundreds of places "To watch his woods fill up with snow."

I remember a snowfall in Steubanville, when I was barely even four I'd guess, with wind whipping and a long hill in front of the house and children riding sleds and... cold.  That alive cold that makes you know you exist.

I've watched snow fall from the double doors of an old barn, smoking illicit cigarettes of two kinds.  The barn was down a wooded lane and I looked on as the gravel road filled and the trees bowed down and a perfect white tunnel closed up in front of me.

It snowed at Murphin Ridge on our honeymoon, blanketing everything, tucking in our happiness.  I walked down a fence-line, along a trail to a high ridge and marveled at my joy.

A warm, cozy sleeping bag, a frigid tent, a muffled quiet, a flap unzips and a thin but thorough blanket of snow covers my meadow in the high forest of Arizona.  I watch it just drop, heavy, big fractaled flakes over the woods, high pines and aspen, over the silent meadow.  I build a fire against it and later the wind comes up and it all blows hard into the flames.

The front booth of Kennedy's on the Lower East Side had a window and we watched Second Avenue fill.  We watched the frenzy of cabs dwindle, then nothing for a while but Kahlua and coffee and conversation.  And then, soft bells and clump, clump, clump.  A parade of carriages moving from the mews to Central Park for romantic rides and Rockwell worthy memories.

A reluctant parting in Athens, a pretty dancer, a white hat and matching scarf, dark hair, snow falling across the East Green, blanketing the dormers of the brick hall I called home at the time.  A snow flake on an eyelash, on a high cheekbone, both melt and run like a teardrop down her flushed face.  I sat in that dorm window and watched and hoped and wondered... she never came back that night.

I once watched a blizzard for hours and hours from the dining room window of my childhood home.  Little, dust flakes blew under the door to the porch.  The windblown snow drifted as the inches piled up.  I'd never seen drifts made, the way they change and curve, whirling like icy eddies in the Spring creek. The drifts cut over the side of the hill, over the drive that we'd later dig out.

It snowed the morning my father died.  I am glad for that.

The long walk from downtown to my apartment went by a cemetery.  One night a wet, heavy deluge of snow was soaking my coat shoulders and my hat and gloves.  I stood under the arch of a mausoleum that looked down the sloping hill of headstones, hoping to wait the worst of it out.  Each stone and cross and granite cherub was adorned with little conical piles of snow.  It looked silly, absurd.

I've watched the snow fall sitting at the dining room table of my children's childhood home writing an ode to snowfall and wondering how many they will see and if the lessons will be the same.

Thanks for looking out and back with me today - back to the memories and out into the yard - both seem to reach a long ways.

There's more, there is always more.  The day it blew and snowed so hard the boys were already at school.  I watched from the table and they watched from their desks.  I asked them if they'd seen the squall I took a picture of.  They said they had.  They said everyone was "flipping out" and screaming for a snow day.

Zack said it was cool.

Nick said it was pretty.

From Marci's "... things you don't expect to hear from the backseat ..."

Boy 1: "Ouch!"

Boy 2: "Karma! Boom-shaka-laka!"

Best catchphrase ever...

Peace to you.

Friday, January 8, 2016


A funny thing happened around here recently.  I have been struggling - perhaps a bit dramatically, yes - to add a level of disassociation here between the boys and the words I insist on lining up day after day.  I formed that clunky sentence on purpose.  I can't totally disassociate myself from them, that would not serve my purpose here.  But, at the age they are now, as they find out more about themselves, more about their talents, their faults, their desires and aspirations.  As they begin the difficult thinking - war, prejudice, hatred; acceptance, love, beauty... girls - I think I am obliged to step back and watch and remain silent, for now.  The funny thing is - no, not the original funny thing, I'll get to that, this is sort of a spontaneous aside -  that I feel like I have something to learn from them... something about myself, about the way I learned these things, about the forgotten people and situations that are returning to me as I watch the boys navigate this stage and remember navigating it myself.

So, to find the awkwardly coined "level of disassociation" I mentioned, I've decided to tell more of my stories and kind of flip them back to the boys now.  I have also decided that I should let them know when I am using an image or telling a story that they might find personal.  For instance, they both read my last post about Ping-Pong and my childhood basement.  Nick really liked it.  Zack liked that he was in it.

They understand, I think, why I am doing this.  It is indeed difficult thinking, to understand that a future is coming, that now is the past.  A painting, or handmade clay bowl, a stick-house for fairies under the cedar trees, is all temporal, fleeting - they sense that.  Sure, I could archive and curate, catalog and record it all.  I've tried to grab a bit of here in this long letter home I call a blog.  You can't get it all, though.  But if you can get a piece of it, an edge or corner of it, they can extrapolate the whole of it.  They're smart boys.

I also think they know that I won't tell any of their secrets here.  They own those, I can only give away my own.  They trust me.  They trust integrity.  They know I will not fail them... on purpose at least, or unless it's really funny.

Funny!  That's where this started...

So, the funny thing is, that since I've been more open with them about what I do here, they've started suggesting ideas and crafts and stories for me to include here.  So, just as I have been trying to find a better middle here, they start wanting more stuff about them.

A lot of folks might think that as long as they don't care, well, post away, right?  Here's the thing, they don't know what may or may not be appropriate, what might be too revelatory or personal.  I'm not sure I do either, but I think I have a better feel for it.  Oddly, this comes from overlaying my own childhood over theirs and noting where they meet.  This thing hurt me at ten, it may also hurt them.  This was hard for me at eleven, it is surely as difficult for them.  I found joy in the things they are enjoying and was mortified in the same places and circumstances.

I will proceed cautiously.  I think it best to not tell you which of the things the boys have asked me to include here.  I think they'll remember.

Zack has been into Rubik's cubes and such lately.  He's figured out several different styles.  He's proud of himself.  This picture is from an untitled series on his camera of image after loving image of all his new Rubik's's (sorry, I don't know what else to call them, they're all not cubes and shapey-shifty-twisty-colored-tile-thingees seems long).  Pride is a good to see in a son.

Marci had posted this on her FB page a while back with the caption, quoting him:  "Solved like a boss."

Here is one he took of all the ones he has now.  He purchased, like, three I think with Christmas money and Nick gave him one then as well.  He also did all the editing for the image before I put it here.

Nick made a very good fire the other night.  He was proud of himself and I was, too.  Pride is good to see in a son, you might remember.  He told me that he wants to remember sitting in front of the fire, warming their feet, adding logs and poking them.  I think I know what he really wants to remember - being safe and warm and happy and simple and loved and hopeful.  He knows that now is the past to come and he wants that past to come to be good.

Sadly, I don't have a way to show you that.  I guess I could get a picture of him staring wistfully into the fire but Nick doesn't, uh... pose well.  The problem is that he thinks his accomplishments go unnoticed and unheralded (see above paragraph) and sometimes wishes that he had something to take pictures of or hold in his hands.  That's tough.  I get that.  No one likes to feel second or marginalized.  No one like to go unnoticed.

Zack came home from school last night and made an art piece sort of thing a paper and crayon craft a mixed medium work of crayon shavings, paper and Scotch tape... this:

It is untitled as well.  It's really cool and he likes  it a lot.  We had a good art talk about negative space and balance and primary colors and all.

Untitled.  Perhaps that is how Nick feels sometime.  He thinks he doesn't have a thing yet.  Nothing tangible like Zack's art work or his Rubik's's.

I think he has a thing.  I am reluctant to tell him.  I am not sure I am the one to tell others their talents.  (I went down this road in a post called Wrapped Gift Post.)  If I were though, I tell him it was his love of reading.  Believe me, that's a damn super-power right there.  The cliche is true, you can go anywhere, learn anything, feel everything, learn all there is to know about others and yourself.  If I were to tell him, I'd say that reading as much as he does is just as impressive and noteworthy as any twisty-shapey thing or paper on the window.

In Nick's reading class this year they made a contract to read a certain amount of books this school year.  It's called the "forty book challenge."  Nick's read sixty-two.  Well, actually, the number of books he's read is not exactly certain.  They get to call any book three-hundred or more pages long two books.  It doesn't matter.  He leads the class and his teacher had to make more pages for the log in which he puts the book's title, author, dates read and number of pages.  He is proud of himself.  So is his teacher.  His pals are impressed and he likes that.  Don't we all?

Just as I couldn't show you the fire and the dreams they hold, I can't show you this either.  He knows the books and the stories they tell him are important to his own story.  I don't know how to show that.  But, I certainly understand how important it is to him.

You know what?  Maybe I can.

In the two weeks of Winter break Nick read this whole series.  Zack has started them so we still have them all.  It's like four adult novels there, in a little more than two weeks

He cooperated in taking the picture there.  He'll probably read all this soon, or maybe later, but those words don't sometimes apply around here.  Hopefully he'll understand how proud I am, was, of him, of both of them, of us.

Well, thanks for looking in on me again.  Listen, someday I might have to shut this all down.  Know, if I do, that I will continue on in private.  It is important to me that you know that.

From Marci's "... things you don't expect to hear from the backseat ..."

"Dad, where do you keep your biggest hammer?"

Right over there, next to the TNT and blasting caps...

Monday, January 4, 2016

We Called It Ping-Pong

My family had a Ping-Pong table when I was a kid.  It turns out that "Ping-Pong" is a brand name, the sport is actually called Table Tennis.  I never call it that.

I'd guess we got it in the early 1970's.  That table was always there, seems like for as long as I can remember.  I got pretty good.  I had two older brothers and a Dad to keep up with.

It was a good way to pass the time, days are long in rural Ohio, even the short days of winter - especially the short days of winter.  I don't recall how it came to be, I know my brothers really wanted it and my Dad advocated for it, I think it came at Christmas.  I could worry about the accuracy of the situation and timing, I could look it up, ask my brothers, ask Mom...

I'm not going to, though.  Those aren't the details my mind seems to hold onto, but, I need only hear that "thock, thock, thock" that only Ping-Pong paddles on balls can make, and...

I see the basement instantly whenever I hear that sound, my Dad's work bench at one end, a chest freezer at the other, an old stove sometimes used for a second turkey along one wall, an old fridge full of pop and Rolling Rock, hams and Hillshire Farms summer sausages and questionable cheeses.  The rag chest where old underwear and worn out jeans and flannels waited to polish a wood table or silver family flatware or clean a carburetor, a five gallon tin of Husman's chips on top stale and salty - grabbed by the handful as I waited my turn to get beat - stood a bit wobbly next to the fridge, a red high-stool, with steps that flipped out to sit on next to it.

I know we talked a lot, laughed a lot, argued a lot and bonded as best we could.  Dad didn't play all the time.  He won a lot.  I played with neighbor kids and high school mates, college friends, my parent's dinner guests and even an occasional girl, though I remember mostly all guys, cigarette smoke and scotch tinkling in round seventies tumblers and plenty of Rolling Rock.

It is a fond memory, memories, I guess, but I wonder why it is so dear?

Back in those days the game was played to twenty one, serve trading on the fives except for the winning point.

We play to eleven now, Nick, Zack and I.

Yep, a few birthdays back, my Mom got the boys - and their dad - a new table.  They're pretty damn good.  Zack slams and slams and Nick plays a finesse game.

They best me pretty regularly, I'm glad for that.  You can see how good they are in this video, you can see they are having fun, but, do you see the basement behind them - the ironing board, the chest freezer, the washer and dryer, the desk behind Zack?

That's why I wanted to show you this, we remember places and times like these, basements and brothers, fathers and sons.

Peace to you all.  

(Yes, they did say okay to me using this video.)