Sunday, January 18, 2009

Late Night Music in January

So I've decided to post upcoming musical acts on network late night shows. (Leno, Conan, Letterman, Ferguson, etc.) It should be pretty convenient to have everything listed here so you don't miss some of your favorite bands.

We're already over halfway through the month of January which is one reason I'm going to start this in February. Another reason I'm not going to start now is because I've filtered through this month's guests and there's nothing too special to alert you to. Either that or all the episodes are reruns (most shows are taking a break for the inauguration week).

But don't fret! I promise to do this in February and update regularly.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

The Facts

I know everyone is curious. And I really mean that. I know everyone is. Some people are more curious than I am. So here it is. This is the story of Terminal E in Logan Airport.

Between the hours of 5:30 and 6:30pm I waited outside the International Arrivals door, nursing a cup of Dunkin Donuts coffee that I had no intention of drinking. I just needed something to hold on to. During this time I saw the most beautiful baby in the world, followed by the most ugly child in the world who would not stop chasing after a middle-aged woman riding a segway. There was a fancy driver guy holding a sign that said "Virgin" on one line and "Money" under it. Virgin Money. I don't know what this means but I asked him if I could take a picture of it and he said no. I saw one man come out of the doors and beeline towards me. He dropped his luggage pretty much at my feet and proceeded to take out every article of clothing inside. He put everything he had on him. And I mean everything. It was the most peculiar thing I have ever seen. He didn't acknowledge me at all either. He just zipped up his now empty suitcase and headed out the door. God bless him.

But enough about strangers. Or... more about a stranger I suppose.

When my father finally came through the arrival gates I held my breath. He was alone. No. Wait. He was not alone. There was a woman trailing slightly behind with her own cart of luggage. This must be her. I walked up to my dad and gave him a big hug. It's been a month since I've seen him but I couldn't help but cut the hug short. Where was that woman? It has to be her. She is clearly Sri Lankan and as she walked behind my father she seemed to know him. But the woman I saw was not near my father anymore. She was greeting someone else at the gate. As I realize this is not her my father says, "You won't believe it! My friend was on the same two flights as me the whole way! Isn't that funny?!"

Yes, dad. Extremely funny. Fifteen very "funny" seconds of my life passed by trying to figure out if this woman was my new stepmother. It was really a blast.

So my father said goodbye to this mystery woman (but not the mystery woman) and we headed out to my car. And now the truth comes out.
"So how was your trip?"
"Awesome, just great!"
"Lots of beach time?"
"Oh yeah, and a wedding."
"You know I got married right?"

We're suddenly in the car (I don't remember ever putting his luggage in the trunk) and I find myself looking at a wedding picture. Now, I can't really describe it but if you google "sri lankan wedding" or something along those lines you'll get the picture (Not literally but you know what I mean). It was a very happy looking couple. Except one of them was my father and the other, a stranger. It was such a strange feeling. My father had a wedding. His European friends who were on vacation were there. His family was there. I was not. So very strange.

After asking a few questions I learned these things.

She is not a widow. My brother just made that up, I guess. She has never been married and does not have any kids (until now... mwahahaha). She lives right outside Sri Lanka's capital, Colombo so unlike my father's family she isn't much of a farm girl. She teaches computer stuff to people. Like word processing and excel and shit. Here's the good one, she speaks English!! Yes. The language of kings! And from what I hear she speaks English well. What a plus!

She is also nice and funny and very anxious and excited to come to America. All very good things.

I will have to wait a while before I can meet her. She's got lots of paperwork to get approved. My dad thinks it'll be a couple of months or sooner.

I'm going to have my dad scan in the wedding photos so if you know my dad and will find the humor in them just let me know and I'll send them your way. They will not disappoint!


Today is the day...

When I will spend about 20 minutes driving in circles at Logan Airport and occasionally slowing down to look at the people standing under the Virgin Atlantic sign. One hopeful part of my brain will be looking for one person while another part, the more anxious and incredulous part, will be looking for two people.

One will, without a doubt, be my father.

Sam Liyanage has been in Sri Lanka for exactly one month, missing his birthday cake which I made him in spirit, Christmastime cheer which also never really existed, and the New Year which technically also happened on the other side of the globe... but I doubt he got to see the ghost of Dick Clark on HD television. In reality it was I who missed everything. I potentially missed meeting my new mom's family and greeting her in the place where she spent her entire life.

Now I'm going to back up here. One week before he left for Sri Lanka my father picked me up in Lowell where I go to school, took me to a store to buy me a fancy winter coat, and treated me to dinner at a much-too-classy Vietnamese restaurant. A smarter, more observant person would have suspected something. All I suspected was that it's about time I have a coat for the winter and that I could really go for some Vietnamese food.
As we sat eating our Pho Hoac Mi watching the Patriots play on 4 TVs my father turns to me and says (without any introduction or prep),
"So... I'm getting married."
And I say,
"You're kidding." (repeat about 67 times)
"No, I'm not kidding, why would I be kidding."
I laugh. A lot.
"To whom?" I ask. Not a crazy question considering my father is not currently dating anyone.
"A woman." Well that's a relief...
"Which woman? Am I suppose to guess???"
"She's in Sri Lanka. I'm getting an arranged marriage."
Well that's it. The dams of laughter break. I laugh into my napkin, giving me time to process what the hell he just said.
"Why are you laughing? That's how they do it in Sri Lanka." Apparently has not yet franchised there and they are still trading goats and spices for wives.
My one and only real question, "Is she coming here?"

That was pretty much the end of the conversation. We finished our dinner, the Patriots won, the check was paid, we ate our fortune cookies (which was curious because we were not at a chinese restaurant) and we left. The topic was never brought up again.

So I'm left with a few questions. (Some of which were answered by my older brother, Ben who had a slightly more involved discussion with our dad a week prior.)

Who is she? (I learn later that she is sort of a friend of the family. She is a widow. How tragic.)
How old is she? (According to Ben she is in her 40's or 50's. So which is it? 40's? 50's? That's a big age gap Benjamin. Get your facts together.)
Does she speak English? (??)
Does she speak a little, tiny bit of English? (????)
Does she have children? (She was married at one point so... probably, right?)
Does she even want to come to America? (This can't really be a dream vacation for her)
Won't she miss her family? Her country? I ask this because my father has been in the states for 30 years and still misses his family. I can only imagine what it will be like for her.

Then the big question. Is she really coming here? Is she really marrying my father? Is there not a chance that this whole thing does not work out? Or even funnier, that my dad really was kidding. And it's even more possible that she won't be flying in with my father but coming at some later date. And then what do I say? "Welcome back, Dad. So, where the fuck is she?"

I wish I made this whole thing up. I wish I could tell you that I need you to edit this chapter in a fictional book I'm writing about fucked up stories that would never actually happen to people.

Unfortunately, this is my life. Please laugh with me.

Monday, January 12, 2009

And so it begins.

Because although I speak without thinking, I more often think without speaking.

So here you are.