Friday 28 Oct 2016

Sunday Mornings
AJ Robinson

Sunday mornings have always been special to me. I remember when I was a little kid growing up in Arlington. On Sundays, before going to church, I’d get up and head to my parents’ bedroom. Knocking on the door, they’d tell me to come in. They were sitting up in bed, reading their own certain sections of the Boston "Globe." To be honest, I don’t remember which sections they each preferred, but I do remember my favorite.

I’d move to the end of the bed, where the linen chest sat, climb up on it, and then crawl up the middle of the bed. They always had a space cleared for me. I’d scoot under the covers and reach for that all-important section: the comics! There’d be “Peanuts” and “Momma,” “Wizard of Id” and “Blondie,” and so many others. In some cases, I didn’t get the jokes, but I never let on. 

That was always a special time for me, a time to be with my mom and dad, a brief moment of shared fun. When you’re the youngest of five boys, getting quality time with your parents is very nice. Sometimes they’d tell me about things in their sections of the paper: a movie coming out, an important political event, and maybe a major news story of the day.

All too soon, those Sundays ended; such is life.

Yet, Sunday mornings remained important. When I lived with my dad as a teen and young adult, following the divorce of my parents, we’d always watch the "CBS News Sunday Morning with Charles Kuralt," although my dad always mispronounced his name: he called him “Turalt,” and no amount of correcting on my part could ever change that. Even after my dad passed away, I still watched the show.

Then my own family came along. My wife and I loved our daughter, but we felt the need to have some “alone time” when we could just sit and chat, as adults. We got the idea to go out for breakfast every Sunday morning. We’d grab the Sunday paper and head off to whatever restaurant tickled our fancy that week. Me, I always loved IHOP, their pancakes were positively sinful! We’d alternate between that place and Denny’s, and a nice little local mom-and-pop diner. Over time, we were on a first name basis with most of the staff and we always enjoyed reading the paper and clipping coupons.

Some days we’d head off to the flea market or some store that had a great sale, as indicated by the paper. Other times we’d take in a movie or get some gift shopping in for our daughter for Christmas or birthday. As the Sundays slipped by, our daughter grew and, all too soon, she was off to college. Suddenly, every day was Sunday for us, especially as I was working part-time as a bartender. When you have no regular work schedule, you can do as you please.

Once a week, we still go out for breakfast. We still make a point of buying the Sunday paper. Sometimes we have to keep it around for a couple days, but we still take it with us to read.

Sometimes, Sunday isn’t so much a day of the week as it is what you make of it.

Combining the gimlet-eye, of Philip Roth, with the precisive mind of Lionel Trilling, AJ Robinson writes about what goes bump in the mind, of 21st century adults. Raised in Boston, with summers on Martha's Vineyard, AJ now lives in Florida. Most of the time he writes, but sometimes he works at Disney World to renew his fantasies and get a few dollars more. AJ writes, with insight and passion, about his family and his dog. His liberal, note the small "l," sensibilities often lead to bouts of righteous indignation, well focused and true.

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