If you had told the 13-year-old, tin trailer living, outhouse using, raggedy clothes wearing version of me that her life would come to this, she would have wanted to believe it with every fiber of her being but couldn't possibly have imagined it coming true. I swear I wished on many a bright star, birthday cake candle and 11:11 clock read-out that I would have a life & career that allowed me to have a week like the one I just had.
I have just returned from Los Angeles after attending, among many other awesome events, the 2006 TV Land Awards with my fiance, comedian Christian Finnegan, where I was feeling pretty high on life and - dare I admit it - myself. I looked good, felt good and only made a fool of myself once when I told at TV star that he was a liar, that he was just pulling my leg. Turns out he's honest, I'm just a little bit skeptical and a lot inexperienced.
"Why would you not believe me? Am I not dashing enough?" he asked with an impish grin.
"No, it's just, I mean why would you be sitting next to me?!" I guffawed.
Unless you've grown up in the woods of Texas and once slept on chicken coop wire in a tin shed with deaf parents -- one of whom is now in jail for attempted murder -- you just can't imagine how surreal it is to be sitting amongst every television star from your childhood not as a busboy but as an invited guest. Of course he was her husband, he was in the extra special seating section for VIPs . . . and so was I.
It only took one day home in New York for me to float back down to reality when I checked the mail and saw a new letter from My Jailed Deaf Dad. Oh the letter was fine, I guess. It was just enough of a reminder that my cross to bear is still alive and kicking and screaming no matter how gussied up I am, no matter where I get to sit, no matter what.
In his note he complained about the interpreter in his ward. They got into an argument about the rights of deaf inmates and she became so incensed at Dad that she requested he be moved to another ward. So, he is in solitary until a space opens up for him in another wing. He's okay with that saying, "I have chance to stay cell for making me to writing a letter Lawyers and N.A.D. [National Association of the Deaf]." He also included a long list of websites for me to visit and request free catalogs on his behalf. Just more work for me. (Click on thumbnail for his list.)
Finally, as though he knows how his complaints and requests for favors bring me down, he included this gem.
It's a clipping from Life Magazine about a Ukrainian man who, at age 34, is the largest man in the world and still growing. Dad drew an outline of his hand over that of the Ukrainian's along with this note:
"P.S. You don't know what size is his dick? He received an orchiectomy because all women get scared to see his dick! HA HA! =)"
To read the letter in full, click for page one and page two.