OMGabe

by Gabe Berman – the author of Live Like a Fruit Fly

Archive for the month “April, 2016”

No Sleep Till…

My dad would have known in two seconds.

In less than that.

But my mom wasn’t exactly sure.

“Hey, where in Brooklyn is that?” I asked.

We watched the movie Brooklyn tonight and she didn’t know where this one specific scene was shot.

My dad would have said something like, “That’s the corner of so-and-so and so-and-so. I once worked three blocks away from there. And you see that car? It’s a ’49 Pontiac. My father had one.”

I’m truly grateful to have the opportunity to spend so much time with my mom, but I really missed him being around tonight. More so than usual.

I miss, so much, seeing them on the couch together.

And me, being me, knew full well it wouldn’t last like that forever so I took rolls and rolls of mental photos of my parents falling asleep on each other’s shoulders. It’s just that I was hoping to keep those photo books in storage for as long as possible.

But as my dad was fond of quoting, “The best laid plans…”

And listen, I know I’ve been writing about my dad being dead for a few years already. But if you haven’t experienced losing a loved one in such a horrible way, I’m simultaneously envious and relieved for you. But let me just say this – there’s no getting adjusted to it. It’s awful. Always.

I mean, of course I smile and make people laugh and I enjoy existing for the most part, but his absence on the couch is still as shocking as wet sponges hooked up to a car battery.

I’m teary as I type this and got teary earlier when I couldn’t watch him watch the movie.

But these weren’t the only two times I cried tonight.

I also lost it a little when I saw Tony look at Eilis in Brooklyn. He fell in love with her, deeply, before he was even conscious of it and it was portrayed so perfectly and delicately and beautifully.

I’ve been in love like that and it’s the goddamn greatest ever, but that wasn’t what pushed tears through my tear ducts.

I cried because I’ve loved like that. And I’m in love like that, everyday. Incessantly. With just about everything beautiful. And that made me cry when I realized, for the first time really, that’s all I have.

That’s all I have.

Love.

That’s all I got to offer. And I know, thoroughly, down to my bone marrow, that it will never, ever be enough in this world.

And that’s sad.

It’s just so sad for so many reasons.

But at least I know why I’m here. Finally.

So, if you’re reading this now, there’s a pretty good chance that I love you. Whoever you are. And if you’re thinking these are just words, think again.

Please.

thank you,
gb

Love Looks Like This

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Abre Los Manos

Genetics, man.

Thank God for genetics.

Those little chromosomes deliver unexpected gifts at times.

Like today.

I went to Mollie’s house.

She’s ninety.

My bubbie’s little sister.

They have the same exact hands and I never realized that until today.

I mean, why would I?

But Bubbie has been dead since January and it’s nice to see her hands again.

So nice.

Mollie is sitting next to me as I write this and she’s reading my new book Love Looks Like This.

Although I make everyone else in my family buy it if they want to see it, I gave her my personal copy.

I really loved her as a kid, and of course I still do, so, she deserves it.

She read it twice from beginning to end and now she’s fixated on the front cover.

And get this, she just said, “Ohh! These long shadows. I see what you mean now. Love looks like this. Love is endless.”

That wasn’t my intended message when I designed the cover but nevertheless, she’s right.

Love is endless.

(And so are post-Passover matzah crumbs)

Love Looks Like This

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To All The Jews I’ve Loved Before

Dear New IPhone,

Yes, you rock.

Obviously.

But if you really want to impress me out of my pants, step up your technology to this –

“Hey Siri, text every Jew in my phone: Happy Passover!”

There’s just too many of them in there. And I don’t have the time or patience to go one by one.

And if I send a group text, even with a P.S. of, “Please don’t respond to this group text. Text me back separately,” I’ll invariably get a message from one of my hoodlum friends like,
“Hey fuckface! How are your balls?”

And my ninety year old aunt Mollie, in Boca Raton doesn’t need to see that.

However, just in case you’re interested Mollie, they’re just fine.

Happy Passover everyone!

And to all a goodnight.

love/thanks,
gb

Live Like A Fruit Fly

Love Looks Like This

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Fuck Pride

It took three tries and two long pauses between those tries to get the goddamn sentence out of my mouth.

“Remember the music from that movie daddy…”

“Remember the music from that movie daddy would…”

“Remember the music from that movie daddy would…always whistle. Once Upon A Time In America with Noodles? With De Niro playing Noodles?”

My mom checked back into the old files in her mind and within a second, smiled in acknowledgment.

And after I almost cried three times, I smiled too.

It was a nice moment for us to share.

We watched Tarantino’s latest flick together tonight. The Hateful Eight. Ennio Morricone composed the music for it. And for the Once Upon. My dad would randomly whistle a song from that score while reading the New York Times. And then he’d look up from the paper and say to me, “Hey, Noodles!”

I wonder when I’ll stop being eviscerated by these memories.

Hopefully never.

love/thanks,
gb

My new book – Love Looks Like This

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Paralyze The Mother Fucker

“Hey, your dog is looking pretty tired,” I said loud enough for this guy to hear through his headphones.

He was riding a bike on the boardwalk and his leashed dog was doing his best to keep up.

Looking down at the dog he yelled back to me, “He’s fine. He can go twenty miles without breaking a sweat.”

That may be true, but the dog might have been on his last legs.

Might have been.

I wasn’t exactly sure.

And that’s the only reason I didn’t deliver karma.

My first thought, really, was to rip him from the bike like a samurai would dismount an opponent from a horse. Then, chain him to my car and drag him around town for a few miles.

But I know me. And by the time I found a chain and figured out how to actually chain it to my bumper, I would have forgiven him.

So, I quickly replaced that idea with a more immediate one: ripping him from the bike, samurai style, and breaking his spine over my knee. Really.

Wait.

Just wait.

Gabe, didn’t you just put out a book called Love Looks Like This? Don’t you always say that we’re all connected?

Yes and yes.

This is love. Tough love. Very tough love.

And, yes, we are in fact all connected. This world, this universe, is one giant organism. And sometimes I’m a brutal white blood cell. Removing cancers from our body. Taking names.

Someone has to stand up for that dog.

If not me, who?

Right, there’s you. Thank God for you. Really.

justice is ours,
gb

Love Looks Like This

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My True Love

It burns like a bitch.

Suntan lotion in the eye.

The worst.

But yesterday it stung sweetly.

Because it’s a sign of the upcoming summer.

Ahh, summer.

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.

Is there anyone in your life who is simply in love with love? Love Looks Like This

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Not Thinking, Being Thought

I noticed my hand reach for the iced coffee to the right of my iPad.

I completely wasn’t conscious of it until my fingers felt the condensation on the cup.

Marionette string theory – the end – .

love/thanks,
gb

P.S – Dear Starbucks employee – it’s Gabe. There’s a “e” at the end. Not Gab like flab.
Gabe, you know, like flabe.

The loveliest little goddamn book ever is available here:
Love Looks Like This

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The Apprentice Is Now The Master

Totally black.

The screen went totally black and it became completely silent in there.

Just ten minutes left of the mystifying movie Midnight Special and the projector shut down.

As if sitting in a crashing fighter jet, I ejected myself out of the seat and headed to the lobby to alert the officials while everyone else in the theater just sat that there like helpless lambs.

The movie was back on in minutes. The ending was remarkable. Super sick flick. See it.

That was me being my dad. Jumping up like that. Making sure everything was okay. Ready to fix, fight or flee without hesitation.

If there was a fire or an armed maniac, I would have been in my car, completely safe, before anything went down.

100%.

No doubt.

My dad and I used to say that the nazis never would have gotten us.

Get on these trains?

Not. Very. Fucking. Likely.

Maybe this feels like I’m reaching. Like escaping a movie compared to a death camp is a stretch.

Well, it’s not.

It’s just a difference of a degree.

When I was young, feuding with my dad over everything and nothing, I prayed that I’d just disappear. That I could just be an orphan.

But now, after all of these years and after all of these experiences, I literally couldn’t be more grateful that I’m Harold Berman’s son.

So, what does this mean for you, the reader?

Probably nothing.

I just knew I needed to share. And now we’ll see what unfolds next.

And, I just looked out the window and saw a little brown bird picking twigs up with it’s beak. Presumably to make a nest. For its kids.

There’s no better way to end this than with that.

thank you, so much, for taking the time to be with me in this moment,
gb

P.S I snapped this photo right before the movie restarted. Normally I would have texted it to my dad. And he would have said, “You’re a real pisser.”

read my new book, LOVE LOOKS LIKE THIS, here: http://www.amazon.com/Love-Looks-Like-This-Berman/dp/0692665382/ref=sr_1_6?ie=UTF8&qid=1458762345&sr=8-6&keywords=Love+looks+like

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