Backstage...the makings of a stealthy superheroine...
Si rinasce...si rinasce...
As with most things, this page is "in process." What is definite, however, is that life is twisty turny, and it does make for an interesting adventure. International opera singer, marathon runner, pastry chef, mother of Stella-the most beautiful dogter ever, published author and Doctor of Musical Arts...soon you'll read about it here...
2013 New York City Marathon...because everyone should have a cape.
7 Janvier, 2015: Paris
The Bucket List
On Thanksgiving Day, when I was five years old, my father had a massive heart attack. And died.
I don't remember anything about the day, or days after, or years after. It must have been traumatic, but since I don't remember, I have experienced it all through my brothers and sisters, who walked on egg shells for the next twenty five years, until my mother died. Then, it was a fait accomplis. The other shoe had finally fallen...crashing down, ripping apart the family that Mom had worked so hard to keep together.
When Death touches your family in its prime, it becomes your constant companion. The questions, Lawdy, the questions: What does your family do on Thanksgiving? What do your parents do? Are your parents coming to graduation? What do you want for your Father/Daughter dance? Is your mother here tonight? How often do you see your mom? When did your mother go through menapause? Again, I say...Lawdy.
We, of the Exclusive Orphans Club, have a view on life that you regular folk do not have. I call it The Privilege of Perspective. And sometimes it really stinks, but most of the time, it just makes me feel...well...smarter than most of you Commoners. Because I think I have a better grip on reality, the fleeting nature of life, and how monumentally stupid it is to worry about the small things...underwear left on the floor, dishes in the sink, imperfect grades, etc. I often wonder about retirement, and if I should really plan for it, or just figure it out if/when I get there. All through my teenage years, I was absolutely positive I would not make it to 30. I made it, and then I had the "Oh shit, now what do I do?" talk with myself. I had the same conversation at 40...so I decided to go back for my doctorate, since it looked as if I might be around for a while. I won't lie, though... I busted, super fast, through my degree, so that if I died suddenly, I would not have spent my last days of life on sight-singing.
I have recently, however, started wondering if I might...shocker of all shocks...live for a long time, perhaps reaching 50 or 60 or even...God forbid 70 years old and have man hairs grow out of my chin. I've done a bunch of crazy and accomplished stuff that I had never thought was possible. And I did it fast, because I thought I had to. I teach at an Ivy League school, which is absolutely nuts, considering that my mother never finished high school and my brothers and sisters had the whole Dead Father thing to contend with during their years, so I'm the first and last of the kinds to graduate from school, much less teach at an Ivy League. I've run my marathon. I speak a couple of languages...although sometimes it sounds like Pig-Latin, I get by pretty well. I've sung all over the world, worn Maria Callas' jewels (not kidding), I'm married to the world's greatest man, have a wonderful dog, am blessed with incredible friends. The whole shebang. And now, I'm looking ahead thinking "Well, shit. (A la my mom.) What do I do now?" I'm a Goal Gal. Without a goal, I'm not a nice person, and might end up like all of my uncles...in prison.
The problem with goals that we often set is that they are dependent on other people. Or, at least, the goals of musicians are dependent on other people: how irritable they are that day, whose cousin has been bonking who and needs to be hired to keep quiet, etc. So, goals that I set now that I am theoretically wiser, and yes, older, need to be completely dependent on me, or at least on circumstances of which I have some degree of control.
So, five nights ago, I started a Bucket List: the goofy thing people talk about, because of a movie with Morgan Freeman. Of course, if Morgan Freeman told me to die my hair blue and howl to the moon, I'd do it, because he is just that cool. The nerd in me loves new school supplies, an uber sharp pencil with a perfect eraser, and lists. So, I have all of those things, and I have written about 15 things on it so far. I'm going to go 50, I think. JB's list is right next to mine. Some of the goals on The List are simple, accomplish-able quite easily, and others are going to take years and/or a lot of dough. JB wants to earn his Captain's License and have a mud room for his dirty, oily big boy pants and work shoes. I want to run all six of the World Marathons, and someday volunteer for Doctors Without Borders. But I also want to volunteer for the ASPCA and go to a Michelin starred restaurant.
The only thing better for an A Personality person than making a list... is crossing something off of it. So, today I am starting.
In an hour and a half, JB and I are going to Benoit. An Alain Ducasse Michelin starred restaurant. It's not that I am excited about this...it is that I am weepy. It is something I've wanted to do for years and years, but I've never done, for fear of lack of funds, what I am wearing, etc. But today, JB and I are going, and I wonder what the Hell really has taken me so long. I guess I've been worrying about the monumentally stupid stuff and and not really living.
No more, Friends. No more. Time to face the cold, foggy Parisian day and steal every moment that Death has forgotten was His. EVERYDAY is the day that we must live, for tomorrow, we could wake up dead.
I'm going to drink Champagne at lunch. Bucket List #7 crossed off.