Thing 366 (The encore)

Posted by on May 13, 2013 in 365 Things | No Comments

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My blood.

Every good show deserves an encore (or two). So here is my encore, a blood donation during the 100 Units of Love drive that happened today at the Beacon Hebrew Alliance. The drive was put together by my amazing friend Rabbi Brent Spodek. His wife Alison was diagnosed with Leukemia in March (at 37), and this was another one of the beautiful community efforts to help not only her, but others in need. The Spodeks are good friends of ours and it was devastating when Alison got sick.

The atmosphere at the blood drive was magical. The juice and cookies were abundant, and there was a sea of familiar faces lining up to donate blood. This is exactly what this Beacon community does. We represent and take care of each other. I love living here.

I couldn’t think of a better “Thing” to pass along. The ultimate give.

Thing 365

Posted by on May 12, 2013 in 365 Things | No Comments

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Driver’s license, issued 09-09-05.

Happy Mother’s Day to all y’all moms out there….

I’m not giving up driving, but this license expires tomorrow and I received the new one already, so I’ll make some college kid a hero and pass this along (kidding).

I look at the person in the photo and can’t believe who I was back then… No wife (but involved with Deana), no children, employed and with money, meat-eater, pot smoker, exerciser, Brooklynite. So much has changed, yet so much has stayed the same. As much as I miss that guy, I’m excited for the guy in the picture on the new license. He’s got big shoes to fill.

There you have it. One year, 365 things. I want to give a huge thanks to Deana and the girls, who supported and tolerated this project. It will take some reflection and meditation to put this into perspective, but I’m so happy that I undertook this experiment and stuck with it. And a big thank you to anyone reading these blog entries or following along on Twitter and Instagram. As my first foray into social media, I think we did pretty well together.

I have a few more projects brewing, so please stay connected, and keep your eyes, ears and Internet open because I’d like to believe this is the beginning of exciting and hopefully life-changing things to come.

Peace,
Michael

Thing 364

Posted by on May 11, 2013 in 365 Things | No Comments

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NY Jets season tickets, held by my family since 1986.

This decision took a couple of years to make. I’ve been a Jets fan ever since I was a kid and have sat through hundreds of games- in the snow, in the rain, in shitty seasons and in exciting, hopeful times like the early Rex Ryan era. Giving up these tickets breaks my heart a little bit…

Although mostly a financial decision (I’m pretty broke these days), the first strike against the organization came with their move to the new stadium and the introduction of the PSL. With that, my family was thrust upward and out of the seats we held since I was 11. 3rd row seats in section 129, where other fans in that section watched Eric and I grow up, and friendships formed. But the business of the NFL won out over loyalty and we were relocated to section 320 of the new stadium, a decision I made not to pay a PSL ($15,000 per seat if we wanted to stay in the same place, which at the time would have meant $60,000).

Do I feel cheated- yes. Do I understand that this is how business works- yes. Over the last few years at the Meadowlands I knew change was brewing as the demographic of the stadium changed from less die-hard fans to endless faces of newcomers with big wallets, scooping up tickets that loyal fans couldn’t afford or were getting rid of because the team was so mediocre. So I held on as long as I could.

I’d love to continue the family tradition, taking Deana and the girls into a section of friends who would watch them grow up and who knows….they might even see a Super Bowl. But there is no section that I call home anymore- I’ve changed seat location every year in the new stadium, vying for something closer to the action, but still PSL-free. And now there are no more tickets.

Eric dropped out a couple of years ago, and Chris and I picked up the slack, eventually giving up two of the four seats because it was hard to sell the extras. So a few months ago Chris and I decided that we would not renew the tickets. This was the end of the run.

I’ll take so many memories from my days and nights at Jets games, and I’ve been fortunate to watch some amazing players- Jets and their opponents- but Sundays will mean something different now. There will be a palpable emotional shift come September, and like all change I will adjust and move on. I’m grateful and fortunate to have had over 25 years of live NFL action. I do wish to become a season ticket holder again, but there are many years between that decision and now.

Thank you NY Jets. Now go out there and win a damn Super Bowl.

Thing 363

Posted by on May 10, 2013 in 365 Things | No Comments

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Gordini gore tex gloves.

I think the last time I wore these beauties I was snowboarding. Not the last time I went snowboarding, when i broke my clavicle, the time before that. So I’m placing these somewhere around 1993-1994.

I unearthed these from a bag in my parent’s basement. They survived multiple floods and storage in a pod for about a year. Some would say, “Reward those gloves! They are survivors! Keep them! Let them live!” I say yes, but let them live on with someone else. I have a pair with the same qualifications that most likely doesn’t have mold growing inside like I imagine these might. So no thanks, and good luck to the next guy.

I advise a spin through the washer.

Thing 362

Posted by on May 9, 2013 in 365 Things | No Comments

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Arm pads.
I used these arm pads during my high school football career and then for various sports after that. I think I used them during some of my more hardcore snowboarding days but I can’t remember. I have no clue about the smiley faces and question marks but I’m guessing they were an attempt at irony.

Today is one of the days where I want to sweep everything off the table and out the window. If I could sweep the intangible things out of my life, like e-mails and deadlines and responsibilities and hopes and doubts, I would do that today. I’m feeling the invisible wave building above me, heavy and unsteady in its brilliance, ready to smash my skull and bury me in the sand. I feel like I couldn’t run far enough or fast enough to escape my thoughts these days, and so I sit idle and frustrated.

I wish I could put on these pads and get back out onto the high school football field…