Here’s one I’ve been waiting a while to write. A few months back, I decided to check out Louie on Netflix. For those unfamiliar with the show, Louie is written, edited, directed by and stars comedian Louis C.K. It is semi-biographical in that it tells the story an aspiring stand-up comedian juggling his a career and his children while he muddles his way through date and his forties in the aftermath of a divorce.
This show resonated with me on a lot of levels: first and foremost, it’s funny. Louie intersperses stand-up comedy bits with skits about his personal life, à la Seinfeld. Louis C.K’s humor is honest, self-deprecating and at times dark, but it is almost always funny.
Perhaps the one line that sticks with me most from the show is in an episode from the show’s second season. In it, Louie says that divorce “makes you look at yourself in the mirror and realized that there’s no one left to be an asshole to.” It is part funny, part true and all honest.
Just as any stand-up comedian goes out on stage and occasionally bombs, here have been a few misfire episodes: one in particular that comes to mind was when Louie pined for an African-American grocery cashier – simply because she was Black – only to be completely and utterly shot down by the woman. In the episode, Louie comes across as stalker-ish, rather the victim of unrequited love. But taking chances is the hallmark of any god comedian. Some stuff is funny; other bits will bomb. As an aside, I recently read that the stand-up skits in each episode are brand-new material. Louis C.K. does not use material from his real-life stand-up act in the series.
I’m looking forward to getting caught up on the rest of the series. so much so, that I’ve gone ahead and read the synopses for some later episodes. God bless Netflix for introducing binge-watching to unsuspecting world.
“The first thing we do, let’s kill all the lawyers”
Henry VI, Part 2. Act 4, Scene 2.
This quote from Shakespeare is often misinterpreted. Tonight, I am adopting the more popular, more literal and incorrect meaning of this line.
After not being able to arrange a trip for The Kid to come up during The Old Man’s funeral this past February, I decided to retain another attorney to get certain aspects of my divorce decree more clearly defined. Around that same time, I began talks with Jabba to make arrangements for summer visitation. (I knew with The New Guy being born in July, she would have dragged her knuckles through the process, so locking down a firm schedule for summer visitation was paramount). She expressed reservations about The Kid flying alone – both for The Old Man’s funeral and for summer visitation. In fact, Jabba’s reluctance to allow The Kid to fly up for the funeral resulted in him missing it altogether. She wanted me to pay to fly/drive her up with The Kid. I refused. I told her that I would never again foot such a bill for her.
At the time of The Kid’s birthday, we could not agree on a time for him to come visit me for the summer. Jabba argued that his summertime activities were more important than seeing me. At that point, I retained an attorney with the hopes of possibly seeking mediation.
Six months have passed and I have yet to see The Kid. Jabba and I haven’t verbally spoken to each other since my father’s funeral. And my lawyer has done nothing.
To say that I am livid is a gross understatement.
I need to fire this guy, I know that. I need to retain another lawyer, I know that. I have to get this stuff with visitation – and dealing with Jabba – locked down once and for all.
I have to see my son.
After my actual divorce phoning in my case, then dying; and my second lawyer basically playing dead, I am shell-shocked at the thought of putting my faith in another lawyer again. At the same time, things CANNOT continue the way they are.
I wish the law was different. I wish I could retain a lawyer here in Michigan. I’d settle for a lawyer down South just taking my case seriously.
This one is an oldie but a goodie
This is a somewhat cliched “men have feelings” piece, but I was fascinated to hear that nearly in nearly two-thirds of American divorces, it is the wife who files.
The stat about divorced men being eight times more likely to commit suicide than divorced women is always a little disturbing, but not news to me.
Oh, and for the record, in my case, Jabba said she wanted a divorce first; but I was the one who actually filed for it.
An interesting read. i would have assumed that the heart attack risk for men goes up regardless – simply because more men seem to have heart attacks than women…but this does make sense.
I don’t ever agree with any generalizations and frankly, I don’t agree with the majority of the reasons in this article. The first reason could not be further from the truth in my case. On the contrary, I feel that I actually regained my identity after my separation/divorce. The second reason – about a man’s parental instinct being challenged – is absolutely true. As for the third reason – not being allowed to grieve properly – again is another generalization based on how men are expected to behave or supposed to behave – and did not apply to me.
For a long time, I looked to articles like this one for affirmation in my decision to divorce. These days, I see articles like this, mentally check everything on the list and wonder to myself “how did my marriage even last as long as it did?”
I weighed myself yesterday. 198. I literally cannot remember the last time I weighed less than 200 lbs.
Last night, The Auteur and I went to a surprise birthday party for my
oldest longest-tenured friend in this world: I’ll call him The Apostle. I call him this not to be blasphemous or sarcastic, but because he has stronger religious convictions than anyone I’ve ever known. I’ve known The Apostle since kindergarten. We went to elementary, junior high and high school together. We discovered girls together. He was the best man at my wedding.
In an interesting aside, he met Jabba during his “born-again” phase. When he learned about her religious beliefs, he told her to her face that everything he had ever heard had told him that she would go to Hell.
The Apostle’s wife, with some help from his sister and brother-in-law, put together a phenomenal birthday event. It was at a banquet hall that was better suited to a wedding reception. They had a few of his close friends give speeches about him and put together a video including greetings from some of his long-distance friends. One of the speakers brought up a quote that he credited to the Apostle – though I have seen it used by others on the web:
Crave your future.
One of the things I really took from last night – and the birthday video in particular – was that The Apostle has truly made an impact on the lives of his family, friends and loved ones. That famous Jackie Robinson quote ran through my head as I heard person after person sing the praises of The Apostle: “A life is not important except for the impact it has on other lives”.
Watching that video and processing all this information, I’m forced to wonder: what impact have I really made on the lives of others? I know that it often takes time for a person to rebuild their life after a divorce. Hell it has taken my brother and sister years to get themselves back to where they are now, but it’s more than that. I need to be more involved – maybe even more active in my community. I want to be more well-rounded. I’m not saying that I want to be involved in a church like he is; I just want to feel like I make a difference in peoples’ lives.
I crave my future. I obsess over it. Sometimes I think so much about it, I don’t do enough to actually work toward it. Everything I want is within my grasp: my career, the woman of my dreams, my son, the future life that I’ve sought for the last two years – it’s all mine for the taking. I just have to do it.
It’s funny, because The Apostle and I were SO very competitive growing up. We used to push each other. A lot. At various times throughout our lives, I think we envied each other. I haven’t seen the guy in 2 years – since our 20 year reunion – and he’s pushing me once again.