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Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Hi, Uncle Chuck!

It's the time of year when we wax introspective, right? Well, I like to avoid waxy buildup, so don't go expecting too much. Today kicks off a (most likely irregularly serial) series of tributes to people, places, and things that have influenced my life.

Lucky #1 - My Uncle Chuck

When I was a kid, I vividly remember traveling to visit Uncle Chuck and Aunt Syl in Connecticut. They had a nice house and nice friends and a nice church and nice woods across the street...

Have I mentioned their nice-ness?

But, that's not really what I think of when I think of my Uncle Chuck.

The first thing I think of is V. Yup. The old show with the lizard people. I don't think I was allowed to watch it, but I sure wanted to. All the screaming I overheard from the next room, perhaps? The fact that it was freakin' lizard people!?! Just awesome.

The second thing is an instance when I caught him laughing. He was reading, sitting in his recliner, and he started laughing. Well, if you've never heard it... There were tears rolling down his face. He was laughing so hard it started to squeak, and the sheer force of his guffaws (yes, guffaws) lifted his feet clean off the floor. I love to watch him laugh. Of course, I had to know what he was reading. Turns out it was a book called The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.
Could I read it? No.
Why not? You wouldn't like it.
But you're laughing: It's funny, right? No, not really.
But you're laughing. No, not really.

Just for the record, Uncle Chuck, I have read it now. The complete collection. At one point, I laughed so hard that I fell off the couch. Appear: my daughter.
Can I read that? No.
Why not? Oh, I don't think you'd like it.
But you're laughing. That means it's funny! No, not really. I wasn't laughing at that.
What were you laughing at? Your dad. He made a joke.
Dad's at work. That's not the point. Don't you have chores to do?

The third thing that I think of is happiness. Everyone and everything that makes up who Uncle Chuck is lends to an atmosphere of happiness.
  • Aunt Syl baking brown honey oatmeal bread
  • Jokes
  • Scott and Bryant
  • Going to church or talking about when he was a missionary
  • Playing the accordion
  • HAM radio
  • Jokes
  • Kittens
  • Hummingbirds
  • Laughter
  • Jokes

I don't have a single negative thought associated with my Uncle Chuck. Even that one night when I cried in the hallway (seriously - it was like ALL night long) and no one came out to comfort me... well, Scott came out, but I think he went to sleep in the garage... Even that night was my own stubborn fault, I now realize. (Sorry about that, by the way.)

When I think of my Uncle Chuck, I think of peace, and happiness, and love. I'm glad he's a part of my life, and I'm glad that sometimes I can find what I like about him in myself .

UPDATE: Got this note from Aunt Syl: "Hey, Mikki, don't you remember me coming to comfort you and explain that we couldn't take you home to be with your Mom at that time of the night and to just think of happy times until you fall asleep? And you did fall asleep sometime around 1 AM." Oops. I did forget to put that part in! I guess that sentence was pretty poorly worded. Yes, comfort was given. Didn't mean it quite the way I wrote it! Thanks for pointing that out!


Clara said...

I couldn't have said it better myself. I think he may actually walk on water. But don't tell him I said so! And what's this about crying all night?

Mark said...

I guess we have generational reversal going on. My son's Christmas gift to me was the complete Hitchhikers collection in one volume. Apparently I need to expand my universe. What a guy.

Jill said...

How sweet! I can't wait to go visit his blog! :) The one person in my life that is like your Uncle Chuck is my Dad! He is the coolest and funniest old guy in my life! If you decide to follow my blog I write about him often.!

Justine said...

What an awesome tribute to an awesome man! And hey, I learned something new. Had no clue he plays the accordian!

Justine :o )

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