History 1.0 – we are our parents



In the dining room during major plumbing surgery

“You can outdistance that which is running after you but not what is running inside you.” This is a Rwandan proverb. Its veracity, alas, reaffirms itself every morning I open my eyes. But it’s okay, too. At 51, I’ve come to terms with it, and like the face that looks back in the mirror, diminished collagen replaced by an abundance of lines, shadows  and a weird sort of puffiness in its place, one can only say, “Good morning. Again.”

The thing about history repeating itself, yeah- well. When my parents were about 40 years old, they  moved into an enormous West Side apartment. My earliest memories are of being small in a super big place. And frankly, I thought it felt good. I don’t know if my instantaneous reaction to The Big House was a replay of those earlier memories, or if it was something else. I fell, and I fell hard.

My parents (RIP) had a great deal of style. They could not have been more different from one another, but they did respect each other’s aesthetic impulses, and my mother particularly, ranks among the great uneducated Nancy Lancasters of her time.




The above photo is circa 1975.

We were at the big apartment about six years until things went south. Life afterward took us in many different directions all over the world. Although they had been long divorced, my father died in the same town that my mother had been born.

In some strange way, that makes it a small world, I think.

Pictures, being worth many thousands of words, will fill in the rest of today’s backstory. Here are  several about the  plumbing in the master bath. Note relocation of throne to basement, gaping, but necessary, cavity in middle of living room wall and original stack now in back yard. Yes, indeed. It’s a process, folks.

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