September 19, 1980
I have a plan. Well, not exactly, but I have the beginnings of a plan.
For the last few weeks, I’ve been asking around different shops about video cameras. Unfortunately, everyone’s been looking at me like I’m out of my mind. So, I’ve explained to them, that it’s a personal camera for motion pictures with the sound built in, and they’ve assured me that what I’m asking for doesn’t exist.
Each time, the reason I would want such equipment is called into question. It doesn’t seem like something that makes much sense to them that I have. So, I explained, that I wanted to do a series of interviews with my older family members to preserve that information for my children. This seems to satisfy them each, and honestly it’s not too far off of the truth.
They, each in turn, have shown me 8mm and 16mm cameras, as well as audio recorders, and microphones. The total amount to get started with the equipment is more than I am comfortable spending right now, because I like having a little bit of insurance money in the bank. So, this ‘plan’ of mine is to go out and gamble on the Super Bowl again this year. It will help pay for the equipment, and if I put some more money aside, because I know that I’ve begun saving for other plans that I’m hoping will occur to me, in order to try to save Mom, Dad, and Sam. I figure if I have some good stock purchases, and some well placed ‘sure thing’ bets, I can accumulate enough money over the course of the next 29 years, to hopefully be able to put some different options into motion, and not raise any red-flags as far as where I’m getting all of the money.
Avoiding government interference is going to be key, and I don’t want to make a ton of money in a matter a year or two.
I’ve met with my grandmother, and she is very willing to sit for an ‘interview’ on camera, which I’m hoping to show to my parents after I’ve saved their lives, and hopefully it will help to convince my father of who I am. I know that he will be the most skeptical.
Once I told her what I had planned as far as video taping, she asked that we do enough filming that she can talk to my mother, even if she won’t be able to answer back, about all of the things she’s learned about us.
When I saw the look of excitement, I felt a terrible guilt over-come me. The excitement was born out of a refreshed hope, but one that she wouldn’t have if she hadn’t known she was going to die early. I realized in that moment, that while I had hoped to offer her some knowledge of her grandchildren, and her legacy, that I had taken away the hope that she probably hadn’t known she had. The one that we all seem to take for granted, that we’ll live long enough to see all of the important things.
Unfortunately, I’ve now done the damage, and so I have to keep pushing through, in hopes that I can make the next three and a half years as good for her as possible, and that hopefully I can save my family.
She and I have resumed our regular conversations, with the ‘kids’ going back to school. Of course, she was thrilled to hear how things are going with Melanie, and I talked to her about Judy, as well. Yesterday, when I talk about Judy, I could tell that she found it interesting, and was thankful that I have another person to just be a person with, but I also saw the fear she has of me having a penpal who is a former prostitute. She mentioned that she would definitely watch it if it were a story on a soap opera, but she didn’t like the idea of her grandson getting too involved.
I laughed at her response.
“What’s so funny?” She asked, genuinely not understanding.
“You’ve never sounded so much like my mom.” It was true, and she smiled knowing I meant it.
“Is that a good thing, or a bad thing?” she asked, but from the look on her face, she was certainly taking it as a good thing.
“Right now it’s good. When Mom would say something like that it was typically annoying.” I said and took a bite of the pie in front of me, we were meeting later in the day than we had the previous school year.
“Well, kids get annoyed with their parents. I suppose that’s only natural.”
I nod and swallow my bite.
“So, have you told Judy about where you’re from?” We often spoke in a slight code, to avoid the awkwardness of other patrons hearing us talk about time-travel. There had been one incident, in which a guy had overheard something and got upset because he thought I was a con-artist hustling my grandmother. She had quickly corrected him, and explained that I was telling her about a screenplay that I had been working on, and that he didn’t have to worry. Since then we’ve been more careful.
“No.” I shook my head. “I’ve considered telling her. Unlike Melanie, I don’t think there would be the same kind of emotional pain caused if she all of a sudden thought I was insane, but ultimately, I don’t want to lose a pen-pal. Right now, it’s you, and her, and Melanie, and otherwise I don’t have that much going on socially.”
“What about with Scott?” She had been so excited to hear that I had made first contact with my father. It hadn’t been much really, I had just approached him at the store, and introduced myself and asked if he knew if Coke was hiring, and he had told me he wasn’t sure. Since then, there had been a little bit of friendly interaction when we’d walked past each other in the supermarket but nothing much. I still wasn’t sure how to try to strike up a friendship.
“Um… Not really. He’s friendly enough, says ‘hi’ whenever he comes in, but otherwise nothing.”
“I’ve been thinking about trying to finagle a double date, thought if somehow I could figure a way out, that would give us a chance to get to know each other.” I pondered for a minute. “Something like ‘hey I have four Red Sox tickets, and my girlfriend and I don’t really know who to give the extra two tickets too.’ Or something like that.” I shrugged, social situations in which I could not be direct were never my forte.
“Or… You buy 2, and I could buy the adjacent 2, and you guys could wind up there together.” I had been surprised the first few times she had made similar suggestions, but it turned out she was a bit of a schemer. I wondered how much she had been able to use these skills in the past, the level of excitement she always had about it, seemed like it wasn’t too often.
“That would be great. I’ll talk to Melanie tonight, and see when she’s coming up next. Then I’ll buy 4 tickets.”
We talked a little while longer, but she had to go to be home before the ‘kids’ arrived. I didn’t have work last night, so I went home and did some work around the house. The latest project is making the apartment seem like less of a bachelor-pad, and more of a home. Mostly just been hanging stuff, and slowly accumulating furniture.
When I managed to speak to Melanie, I asked her when she’d be able to come up next. I hadn’t seen her since August, and want to, badly. She told me that she would be up October 3rd through the 5th.
This morning, I went Boston, and down to Fenway to the box-office and found out that the Sox had a home game double header against the Blue Jays on the 4th. I dropped the two tickets off in Reading on the way back, and then headed into work.
It feels good to actually have one plan starting to fall into place.