Light Slips Under a Boy’s Bedroom Door at Midnight Thirty.

Buford scratched on my bedroom door about 12:30a.m. The bloodhound we have doggie sat for years now skips all the other bedroom doors. He woke me out of a dream about sliding a needle across a vinyl record. The Beatles White album me thinks. I Zombie-strolled to the sliding door on the deck and Buford headed out to the latrine.

I fumbled around for useful things to do while I waited for his return. I peed too. I drank water. I stared in the fridge. I turned off lights. I noticed the boys light on in the basement, so I walked down to find our 11 year old awake with a rubber band loom next to him on the bed. I asked him why looming was necessary at midnight and he said he woke up and couldn’t get back to sleep. “Well, you better turn off the light and try to sleep, okay?”


Now I am remembering a conversation I had with Barbara about this adopted son of ours recently. We were concerned about the trajectory of his little life. Barbara has pulled out of her sleeve a multitude of actions in hopes of helping him. She always does. Some issue pops up with a child (which happens daily) and she is researching and doing some figuring to be the best parent she can be. I try to stand under her to get the run-off of insight.

“Barbara, what can I do for this boy?”

She gave me some suggestions, good ones I will implement when I am not busy letting Buford out.

When I woke up this morning I realized I missed an opportunity. I only had to ask him a simple question. “Why can’t you sleep?” should have spilled from my Zombie lips. I remember being up late in the night when I was young too. The lonely quiet hours where thoughts trickle down and slide under the bed next to the crouching monsters.

Recently I remembered watching the Late Movie (11:30p.m. scheduled start) when I was a preteen. There was this Tijuana Smalls commercial. Tijuana Smalls were cigar type cigarettes. In the scene a man in a train smoked casually. The camera pans outside the passenger car as it heads into a tunnel and darkness ensues until the proverbial ‘light at the end of the tunnel’ finds him sitting with a beautiful woman. (Commercials haven’t changed much have they? Every product leads to love and happiness, does it not?…Not!) The thing sealed in my memory is the jingle. The melancholy tune evoked loneliness in me as a young near pubescent lad. The jingle still jangles in my head on occasion.

Last night I missed a shot at a little boy’s heart. Daft. At least I will be more aware the next time a similar opportunity arises.

Prayer: God, give us eyes to see and engage in the opportunities set before us. Amen.

The lyrics to the commercial are quite promising. I guess I didn’t pay attention, otherwise I would have found out who I was a long time ago. Sheesh.


  1. Very nice. Hindsight shows us the many opportunities missed but hopefully trains us for the future!

  2. Jerry, I think you’re on track. Most people don’t even notice their missed opportunities, but you do. Next time I’m sure you’ll pounce on it!

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