Tuesday, July 26, 2011


I've been thinking a lot about death lately.  Not my own, just death in general.  What really brought it to the forefront of my mind is that we had a death in the family, and neither Bud nor I care.  Somehow that feels wrong.  It's not wrong when you examine it, but it just feels wrong.  How sad that someone we know has passed and it is of so little significance to us.

It all goes back to Bud's ridiculous home life when he was a child.  He is the oldest of five children.  His mother had those five children over the course of six years.   There is Bud, then his sister Cheryl, then his sister Debbie, then his brother Kevin (who has left us already) and then his brother Michael.  Without going deeply into the dynamics of this incredibly dysfunctional family, it should be said that the girls are not now and never have been a part of our lives.  Kevin died when he was in his early 20's, so he managed to miss out on some of the worst of the mess, but he got his share before his death, unfortunately.  Bud and Mike have a very close relationship.  Mike spent some number of years trying to have a relationship with his sisters, but it just isn't possible to keep your self-respect and maintain any kind of affiliation with those two girls.  Their mother was the root of all the evil in this family, and she showed so much favoritism toward the girls that the boys were blatantly aware they were unloved and unwanted.  The girls took pleasure in this lopsided arrangement and never missed an opportunity to rub it in.  Bud removed himself from the situation at his first opportunity, and so most our life together has been untouched by the machinations of the Masek women.

The person who died was the husband of Bud's sister, Debbie.  By my estimation, he had to have been quite young; certainly no older than 50, if even that old.  We have not been told what caused his death and it is not likely we will receive any further information.  We knew Robert Fitzgerald.  We actually attended their wedding, though I no longer remember why.  I'm sure it had something to do with irritating their mother, but I honestly don't remember because it was of so little importance.  We did not associate with Robert and Debbie.  We did not attend family functions with Robert and Debbie.  For the most part we were ignored by Robert and Debbie except when their daughters graduated from high school and we were sent announcements, I suppose in the hope we would feel obligated to send a card with money or a gift.  Fat chance!  I don't blame their daughters, but considering who the parents were, it is hard for me to feel any remorse for ignoring them.  Once several years ago Robert wrote a long letter in which he ripped Mike and Andee and Bud and me up one side and down the other because of the way we treated Bud's parents and his sisters.  I responded to him, and it was definitely not a friendly reply.  I'd have to say that scathing letter was undoubtedly the most communication I had with Robert over his lifetime.

So, I don't feel anything about his passing.  But, I keep thinking I should.  I am sorry for his daughters who have lost their father.  I know that is painful.  I really don't feel sorry for Debbie.  It would just about kill me to lose Bud, but somehow I can't see Debbie being too deeply hurt by the passing of her spouse.  I just keep thinking how sad it is that I don't feel sad.

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