Count Down To CLAWS!

christmasedAs the time ticks down to the time when the furry red covered, jolly guy shows up with packages to stuff under the tree I’m thinking did I get everything I wanted for my loved ones?   I know it’s probably too late to purchase anything else at this late an hour.  I’m scheduled at work until 4.  Most shops will be closing early Tuesday night, if they have any stock left.  After seeing the fights on the news over Christmas stuff, really doesn’t encourage me into wanting to leave the house, now, or ever!  Thursday is going to be mayhem with returns and super sales that more fights will break out for.  I’m not very religious, but I don’t remember the passage in the Bible about “pummeling thy neighbor” over a set of new Nike’s.    Perhaps it’s in a new King’s version?   I’m not that old, but it seems to be that people could be civilized when it came to dealing with people that weren’t their family.  Parents used to save their beatings for their kids.   Take that away and now they are lashing out at complete strangers.  I say bring back the beatings for society sake.  For that matter, violence used to stay at home.  Now it is all over the place.  Crimes are up.  Poverty is up.  We have the greatest spilt of rich and poor ever.  Not saying that beating your kids will help, but just look what has happened since Dr. Spock told us kids to go “time out.”  Just saying.  Like the polar ice caps melting, that kind of shit didn’t happen in the fifties.  Where has civilization gone?   Can it be recaptured?

EJ Eisman is the author of the novels Spoon Girl and Malaise, published by AuthorHouse. He resides in Reading, PA and is also a blogger, musician, artist, playwright, actor and filmmaker.

The Pope is Coming

popeIt’s a yearly ritual, my parents coming over on Thanksgiving.  This is the only time in the whole year that I get to see them over my place, as they are getting on in years.  They like to say, “I’m too busy, “ for them to come over but it really is logistics.  My Dad is using a walker, and my Mom has to take breaks when she’s in a store when she’s walking.   While I don’t have stairs to my apartment, the parking lot does slope down.  I have trouble in the winter driving up the hill when it’s icy, so I get it. It was good to see them yesterday.

I took a day off from work, the day before to clean.  Not just a dust and a vac, I go all out.  As this is the only time they see my apartment in a whole year, I want them to see it at its possible best.  So I’m all out scrubbing, and dusting, and cleaning like a mad man so when they come over they don’t have a bad opinion of me.  I was even cleaning the dust off of the back of the dining room chairs, the ceiling fan, the kitchen, you could have eaten off of the floor.  I mopped the floors of the kitchen, bathroom, and the entrance way.  I cleaned the light bulbs on the bathroom mirror.  I even Windex’d the mirrors in the entrance way and the bathroom.  I must have emptied the vacuum cleaner five times just in my tiny one bedroom apartment.  A lot of that junk was from cat hair.

I did all this cleaning.  The house was presentable.  I try to keep it presentable, but I did some slacking, it was time to clean up.  My ex-wife used to have a term for how I would go all out cleaning, “The Pope is coming.”  Maybe now I know the old joke about the Italian family with the plastic over the furniture.  The plastic only came off, if the Pope was coming over.  My great aunt Anne had plastic over her living room furniture at their house on Long Island.   Very Italian!  My grandparents would take us out there to visit.  My grandmother was her sister.  Just miles away from LaGuardia, the planes would fly over and shake the mirrors covering the walls.   My great aunt would continue talking to you in the same voice loudness, totally unaware of the plane over head, so you only got so much of what she was saying.  Just shook my head, while I sat there on the plastic.   It was a trip.

So my parents enjoyed the day, but I can’t help remembering the comment she said as she sat down at the table.  Audrey, my cat was playing around her legs.  My cat can’t help being attracted to dark color pants, and she has a long fluffy tail that seems to be always seems to be shedding.  “You should teach that kitty to use her tail as a feather duster to clean up the table legs.”  OUCH!  The table legs.  Didn’t even think of them nor would I think she would be looking at them for dust.

I’m glad, Pope, you enjoyed the day.

EJ Eisman is the author of the novels Spoon Girl and Malaise, published by AuthorHouse. He resides in Reading, PA and is also a musician, artist, playwright, actor and filmmaker.

Things to be Thankful For (not necessarily in this order)

turkeyIn this time of Thanksgiving, I, like the pilgrims, that will look back over the year and think about the many things to be grateful for.  Now, I didn’t cross a great ocean for 66 days and start a new colony for the Pilgrims where they could practice religious freedom.  I didn’t have the help of the Wampanoag Indians to get me through the first year.  I am grateful for a lot of things as this year rapidly comes to an end.

Blue cheese stuffed olives.  This is a flavor explosion in my mouth.  I’ve heard about them, but I never tried them first until six or seven months ago, in a martini at JB Dawsons, down in Lancaster, PA.  They alternated garlic stuffed olives with these blue cheese stuffed olives in a dirty martini that blew me away.  SO GOOD!  When I was in the liquor store last month, while looking for something else I saw that they had them.  I bought a jar, which is almost gone, now.  LOVE THEM!  They had the garlic stuffed olives also, but I didn’t pick them up.  Next time.

My Girlfriend.  I met Kim in January and we’ve been we’ve been together ever since.   I’m really looking forward to her moving in.  I can’t wait.  I think the two of us match so well.  We have so much in common, and she is so awesome.

My job.  Yes, I can bitch about being on call 24X7 for a week every five weeks, but when I look at Kim and all the shit she has to do just to try to get a High School English teaching job, I feel lucky.   Honestly, I’ve never been without a job.   I think it would drive me crazy.  I think there is always a love/hate relationship with something you have to rely on to pay ones bills, but as jobs go, mine is the best.  I’ve been with the hospital eleven years, and although they’ve stopped some benefits,  I realize I’m really lucky.

My parents.  I’m grateful that I still have my parents. They can be a handful now they are both in their seventies.  My Dad has gone from just having bad knees to a walker within a year, after prostate cancer, but he’s still kicking.  My Mom, she has her own issues.  Kim and I spend breakfast with them on the weekends, and I’m grateful for the time with them.   I didn’t spend much time with my Dad when I was a kid, every weekend I get to make up for.

My apartment.   I love my apartment!  I’ve been here six years now and I’m really loving it. Kim suggested moving this set of book cases, which I would have never thought of moving, and by doing that have made this apartment newer than it had been in the six years now.  I love it!  She has renewed my excitement to be at home, most especially when she’s around.

My new guitar amp.  How can you go wrong with RED?  My new red amplifier is fuckin’ awesome!  I love it!  I can play for hours just changing knobs and buttons and all kinds of shit making all kinds of sounds.  Fuckin’ awesome!   The best part is it’s a Fender.  I’ve always wanted a Fender guitar amp.  I’ve had a Fender PA system, but that doesn’t count cause I used that for DJing.

I’m sure there are a lot of things I’m also grateful for that didn’t make this list, like all the people that have supported me by buying my books or have Facebooked me, signed up for Twitter, etc.   I am so grateful for all of those people as well.  I’m also grateful for my friends, who look up to me and think of me as an “author.”    I don’t feel it yet, but I’m working on it.  Have a Happy Thanksgiving and remember to be thankful for the things in your life.

EJ Eisman is the author of the novels Spoon Girl and Malaise, published by AuthorHouse. He resides in Reading, PA and is also a musician, artist, playwright, actor and filmmaker.

When did you put up your tree?

christmas tree

Is it too early?  I don’t think so.  Many of the local stores had their Christmas trees up even before Halloween.  I sometimes put it around Election Day.  That day is usually rainy and cold anyway, so slap on a music station (web, TV or radio) that has begun the holiday spirit and I’m HO HO HO’ing till the next day when I have to go back to work.  Normally I’m I hit the tree up before Thanksgiving.  My parents spend one day a year at my apartment, and it’s on Thanksgiving.  They’ve stopped putting up Christmas tree yearly because of the work involved.  They are both over 70 and having trouble with their body parts.  You really can’t blame them.

Real or fake?   I’m a fake man myself.  Not that I don’t like real trees, but they are a little like a manual car, all work and it does the same thing as automatic.  Kim, my girlfriend, has been pushing me to get a real tree.  She’s in the process of moving in, and she would love to see the pine needles and that smell all over the house.  I’ve gotten her a Glad plugin for her fix.   Not the same, but it does have its moments.   I’ve never had a real tree in my apartment.  I’m not sure how my cat, Audrey, would do with live/dying thing in house.  I did have some plants when I moved in, but they didn’t get enough light.  It was a beautiful vine that strung from the dining room into the living room and back.  I had it perched on thumbtacks around the ceiling.  Eventually it dried out, and bugs got on it.  It was a sad day to remove it.

Back to Christmas.  I celebrate, but it’s just another day for me.   I’m on call at the hospital this year.  I don’t anticipate any major destruction at the hospital while I’m on call, but you never can be sure.  Once I was on call during a Super Bowl party that I had invited my co-workers to.  An hour before they were starting to arrive, I was in the kitchen making chicken wings, to throw into the three different sauces that I had planned to serve.  My pager went off;  a server went down.  NICE!   It took a week to bring it back up.  It more than ruined that evening.

So when did you put up your tree?  I’m thinking this weekend would be good.  Thanksgiving is next week and my parents will make their journey three miles via their car to my first floor apartment.  Have a great holiday!


EJ Eisman is the author of the novels Spoon Girl and Malaise, published by AuthorHouse. He resides in Reading, PA and is also a musician, artist, playwright, actor and filmmaker.

Now is the time!

UncleSam_preview-300 Now is the time to drag out your tap dancing Uncle Sam holding red, white and blue sparklers and singing Yankee Doodle.  For me, Fourth of July has always meant rain.  And when it didn’t rain there were clouds, with a chance of rain.  And when there weren’t clouds and the chance of rain, there was something else keeping me from enjoying fireworks.  Enjoy your Fourth!  And if you get the chance watch 1776.  Great musical.