Tag Archives: Eel

The Brightening Quiet

Sons of the South savor snowfall.

And alliteration? Absolutely!

Okay, enough of that.

Here in Charlotte, we received a small taste of the snow storm that’s been causing havoc in the midwest, the Pacific Northwest and all over the country, basically.

It’s causing havoc here, of course, but mostly because we see a snowflake and we freak the freak out. Seriously.

But enough of the whining.

No, seriously. Why are you all laughing so loudly?

Fine, whatever.


Walking Buzz, The Garbage Disposal That Walks Like A Dog, last night after the first day of snowfall, I found myself feeling amazingly peaceful and happy.

Yes, it was an odd occurrence. And I traced it to the environment.

I was bundled up like I was three and my mom was about to send me outside in the cold by myself for the first time. I could barely bend my elbows I was so layered. (Look, I was born and raised in the South and this is as far north as I’ve ever lived. Sue me.)

Anyway, that wasn’t it. It wasn’t the cold. It was, I came to realize, the snow.

I’d always thought it was a cliché, not based in fact, that snowfall quiets everything down once its settled. But, by golly, it’s certainly true here.

We walked in the night and couldn’t hear anything but the sound of dog tags jangling together as Buzz, The Garbage Disposal That Walks Like A Dog, continued to bite the snow, freak out, levitate while doing a 360-degree spin, land, repeat.

Eventually, he tired out and we were back to only walking. The sound of my boots squelching in the snow. . . That was the loudest sound of the evening.

Add that to the level of light in the dark and it was a magical evening.

The level of the light is my malformed and horrifyingly clumsy way of talking about the high albedo of snow-covered ground and trees. The white snow reflects back so much more light than does the ground or tree branches.

Because it’s able to reflect more light, it looks like the night is that much brighter, as if there were two light sources. As above, so below. If you will.

Even after the sun set, I could see the gray clouds, hovering above the white-draped tree branches, white over brown, arching across the new-fallen snow covering the hibernating grass in the fields.

It was a beautiful sight.

My wife, known to me as She Who Must Be Getting Cabin Fever Already, today asked me why I’m always so excited about snow. She’s not. This is the second week in a month where she’s only able to work less than three days because of the snow. Which means we’re going to have less money in the weeks ahead.

But still I love the snow. I guess it’s because I never stopped being a young dude, even deep down in my withered, blackened, cynical wasteland of a heart. Yeah, we’ll have to pay for the snow days later in the school year, but seeing that snow, experiencing the brand-new sensations in its immediate aftermath. . . It’s worth it.

I’m glad I live here in the South where snowfall is a rarity. That way, I won’t get used to it. It will remain special, something to celebrate.

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Amateur Night

Amateur Night has come round again, dudes.

Be careful out there on the streets because there are far too many people, who incorrectly think they have a handle on their emotions, their ability and their driving skills, who really, really don’t.

Alcohol isn’t to blame for all of that misperception of ability, but it certainly doesn’t help.

And, to make matters even more non-salubrious, New Year’s Evil is full of people out drinking — a lot — who don’t often drink all that much. And, being the kind of people we mostly are, even when we’re stumbling drunk, we’ll never admit it. Which means these amateurs will head out and keep on drinking. Because they’re obviously not even afflected — notevena liddlebt.

If you see where I’m going here.

Of course, not all that sure that the professional drinkers out tonight are any sort of person to emulate, either. People who drink a lot and do it often, might understand they’re impaired, but statistics show that they still get behind the wheel or drunk dial their exes at 3:27 am for sparkling, slobbering conversation with an answering service.

So that’s not all that good.

Listen. I know we’re all headed out, looking for a good time. But understand it’s okay if your good time doesn’t end with you face down in a suburban roadside swale, blowing bubbles with your nose in the stagnant rainwater.

It’s okay to go out, not drink all that much (if at all) and then wake up on Jan. 1 without a blinding hangover. Really, it is.

In fact, it might make you feel slightly more optimistic about the coming new year if you can do a bit more than moan pitifully and weakly wave toward the curtains in the vain hope that you’ll spontaneously develop telekinetic powers and will close the drapes tighter.

Remember, there’s a lot of unsafe amateur drinkers (and even more unsafe professional drinkers) out there tonight: Avoid them. Come home safely and start out the new year the right way: Alive and happy.

#NewYear #HappyNewYear

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Sunday Serenade: I Can See Clearly Now

by Richard

And then, with all the hard work done and all the worrying still ahead, I decided to relax for just a little while.

It felt like a weight had been dragged from my shoulders. Oh, sure, I know that weight didn’t go anywhere and it’s getting all ready to drop back down with crushing force, but it’s still gone for now and it feels great.

So, great, I had to get me some Jimmy Cliff.

“Look straight ahead, there’s nothing but blue skies.”

Dude. Says it all.


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