it runs in the family.

1978, southern illinois, by robert m. lightfoot iii. 
{l-r: buffalo, pops, mr. graef, mr. henoch}

pops is in town.

tomorrow night i will see him play my toddlerhood favorite, carmina burana. he flew into the city a few days before the rest of the orchestra so that he could see dog days and romp around the city with me a bit. we've been eating falafel and spending all of his per diem on dark chocolate and designer salt. he's also been yapping my ear off about the state of orchestras in america, to the point where i almost wanted to pull a van gogh last night. but before that could happen we became happily distracted with a few wonderful events:

on our way to see nick's unbelievable/breathtaking/shut-up-i'm-gushing show, we found ourselves on the street in the village that pops occupied when he first moved to new york, when he was just younger than me. he showed me the exact building, on west 4th and bank, and i had been there. three years ago. to the restaurant on the first floor. on a really extremely terrible date.

then, post-nick-show, as we sipped neat drinks and shared a fantastic brussels sprout small plate, a jingle on his phone signaled the receipt of a photo {above} of a face i've so often made, only it was on my dad. there he was, about my age, with his craycray friend buffalo, and mr. flute and mr. oboe.

can we first acknowledge that buffalo in this picture would get along swimmingly in williamsburg circa the present?

and now what am i supposed to say about my dad? would i be friends with him of yore? is he goofier now or was he goofier then? what would happen in the sci-fi version of my past if 17-year-old him rolled out of his west village apartment on that non-descript october night as i headed into the first floor restaurant? would i tell him to be careful with the swab during his first mahler two? would i advise him not to bite into that fuddrucker's hot dog that cost him so many years of dental surgery? maybe i would just compliment him on his glasses and tell him to get a new bow tie.