Thursday, September 24, 2009

Burgers, Beers and Cassette Tapes

Burgers, beers and cassette tapes

The day I woke up on the right side of the bed, I knew then that I had made the right decision – to be on the side of the right bed. Betty’s bed.

Looking over to see a woman I had spent so much time thinking about within reach somehow seemed unreal, and yet it was real. More than months of wondering, thinking, and hoping that somehow I could make this happen, had happened. She said yes, and now had a new roommate. Well, that plus another cat who made the near midnight trip over to the Betty’s house on June 4th, 1990.

She told me that she wanted me to be with her. She told me that she wanted me to be with her again. I told her that I would go home that night after work, get my stuff, the cat and the cat box and we would see if her cat would get along with mine. Well, they didn’t- and that was about the last thing a guy needs on his hand, is two cats fighting, one woman crying and another woman being the reason. How do you make that decision?

Well, I fell in love is how.

Maybe it was that time on a particular spring holiday that we drove out to Silverlake park on Lake Grapevine during the day with a bucket of ice and a bottle of Jack Daniel’s. We parked her car and talked – for hours. Maybe it was that time that we drove out to that lake in Irving by the power plant before they closed it. We found a quiet little picnic table and had the radio on her Geo Storm playing one of the cassette tapes of Alan Jackson or Reba – both our favorites during that time of our lives. We wore out that Reba tape; the one with New Fool At An Old Game on it. Over and over we would play that song. If I hear that song today – immediately I can picture my Betty walking across the office in that white dress, you know the one. Maybe it was at that lake.

Maybe it was that time at the Cowboy saloon off of NW Highway in Dallas near loop 12. We would meet up after work for more than a couple of cold beers and talk until one of us was really late getting “home.” I remember that the place would get so smoke filled my eyes would burn. Betty would prop open the front door with that chair with cigarette holes in the fine plastic seat, and go stand by the back door and hold it open to get some air to go through there. I could see the light coming in from behind her, shining through her hair and watch the wind blow her dress against her skin. Maybe it was at that bar.

Or, could it have been those Friday long lunches at Club Schmitz in Dallas on Harry Hines. At least once a month we would meet up there as the lunch crowd was leaving so we could get a booth. I always got a kick (and still do) how she would look at the same menu every time like this place from the 50’s might add a new item on it. The Betty would get her hamburger basket, no pickles and no onions and a bottle of Coors light – every time, and still does. We would put a couple of dollars in the juke box and play our Reba song and then after about three more beers later she would decide that it was too late to go back to the office anyway. Maybe that old burger place did it.

Over some period of time, I got into a habit of going over to the Betty’s house on Monday’s after work. We would sit out in her back yard with her dog Shadow and again talk for hours. I know that we had lots to talk about, with the situation that was developing with both of our lives at the time. Funny - how things can be worked out with some time alone, when both people care about and respect one another. I looked forward to Monday mornings and going to work because I knew that at the end of the day I would end up in Betty’s arms after some problem solving on the back porch. Maybe it was the rocking chair she sat in while we listened to those cassette tapes. We would take turns getting up to refill our glass, get another beer and turn the tape over, and over, and over.

So, I guess that’s how me and the Betty figured out how to make this new life work. Even though we did have an ex-husband that was still around, a mad soon-to-be-ex wife, a dog, and two cats that don’t get along – we did have our Reba tape and each other.

What else could you need, really – but to wake up on the right side of the bed with so much to look forward to?

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Party Plaza Maggots

Once again we have experienced the EGO of Jerry Jones being put ahead of his PAYING fans and his own football team.

Besides the fact that the Cowboys lost the game, the worst part of the day was the Plaza Maggots throughout the area. We, the Season Ticket Holders and PSL holders were completely ignored while JJ concentrated on his image of all things BIG. Those "fans" who only purchased the "party pass" were out of control, in the way, and a general nuisance to all of us who spent WAY too much money to enjoy the "game day experience."

What we did see was the Plaza Maggots crowded outside -locked out of the building and using trash cans for urinals since JJ didn't let them in, OR even provide port-a-jerrys for them to use outside. We had to push and fight our way through the PMs to find our personal entrance to the building. As we were making our way through the crowd, they opened the doors and people were PUSHING, RUSHING, and knocking people down to get in! We were very lucky not to be injured during this time.

If we had ANY idea that JJ was going to have the standing room only areas right BEHIND our seats there is NO WAY we would have bought a PSL, much less attend games in the new stadium.

I won't even address the issue of parking and traffic at this time but suffice it to say it was no better than the outcome of the game for us fighting our way through the plaza maggots all evening.

I'm sure that our own players would have preferred to have the place closed up in the 90 degree heat too. I heard our own Jason Witten say he had to have an I.V. during half time. It was clear our defense was completely gassed in the fourth quarter when we needed them most. But, at least Jerry got what he wanted - prime viewing on youtube picking a winner!