A view of a few key events of the past couple of weeks, while I've been on my blog-break, induced in equal parts by technical and creative deficiencies.
June 7th – Ben’s senior dinner: Two years ago, still in shloshim for Aaron, I was asked to attend just the first few minutes of his grade’s senior dinner. The class made a siyum mishnayis in Aaron’s memory, and the school inaugurated a new Talmud award in his name. I don’t remember crying at that event, or honestly, very much about it at all. Doubtless I was still far too deeply in shock at that time to get very emotional about yet another formal memorial to Aaron.
But at Ben’s senior dinner, I sat at our table, mutely watching the speeches and awards presentations, silently weeping for almost the entire two-hour duration of the event. I’ve become quite practiced at crying without making noise or attracting attention – only Shayna noticed, and kept offering me tissues from her purse.
The RTMA Class of 2007 winner of the Aaron Rosenfeld Award for Achievement in Talmudic Studies? Ben Rosenfeld.
Well deserved, and not in any way, as the principal emphasized, because of his last name. That’s my boy!
June 10th – Ben’s graduation: More joy, more weeping, more delicious and excruciating naches. He made it. He really did! My deepest thanks to God.
Ben’s yearbook quote, from Tom Hanks’ character in “A League of Their Own”, says it all: “It's supposed to be hard. If it wasn't hard, everyone would do it. The hard... is what makes it great.”
June 17th – Father’s Day: Four years ago I had a father and grandfather to celebrate Father’s Day for… and four kids to celebrate mine. I was our family’s middleman for Father’s Day, and kind of took it for granted. Now I’m the oldest father in the family, and Father’s Day has taken on a very different meaning for me. It’s the day when I try to be thankful for what I – Thank God – still have, and think, just a bit less than usual, about what I don’t.
We went to see the Somerset Patriots, a local independent baseball team, and despite coming out with a nasty sunburn on my arms and face, I had a pretty fun time. It’s nice to see a fairly talented bunch of guys – who don’t also happen to be spoiled, immature millionaires – play ball for a living. Not that I don’t enjoy MLB as well, but this has a charm to it the Majors lost sometime around the free agent revolution 30-odd years ago.
That’s it for now. Hopefully next week, the blogging muse will start visiting again a more regularly. Till than, thanks fair readers for your loyalty, patience, and persistence.