Burning Bright

13 Jun

xxxx

Driving down the 10 in the rain, putting my son on a plane to New Jersey, wondering what the fuck is wrong with me. Living alone – my wife in Jersey too afraid to venture west. My son, at 15, becoming a sullen teenager – still sweet underneath, but looking stricken with depression and misery half the time. I’m missing whole months of my son’s life while I make my charge in Hollywood.

I stop into Ralph’s supermarket to pick up some groceries and on impulse buy some Grecian Formula – even though I’ve given myself numerous pep talks that it’s basically a lie to color your hair – that you’re not fooling anybody.

Coming home to an empty apartment, I wonder why I don’t miss my wife more. Years ago she transmuted into another, less appealing person. During Devon’s visit we watched Falling Down with Michael Douglas. Robert Duvall plays a cop who is saddled with a neurotic wife played by Tuesday Weld. She was the spitting image of Ann – a beauty who caved into becoming a complaining, self-centered burden.

And me, I’m trying to crack the Hollywood scene. Not as a player, but as a writer. But am I good enough? Or a shade deficient?

My life has become a series of capitulations, accommodations, apologies, and understanding head nods.

With all that’s going on, the truth is, I may be a textbook case of arrested development. How else explain the absurdity of a guy coloring his hair in the afternoon, while his son flies east to face his teenage years without his father?

I sit in a dark apartment watching A River Runs Through It.

Makes me wonder about death and burning bright.

 

(2006)

 

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