It was roughly 9 years ago when I attended the viewing service of a next door neighbor that passed away silently. I was a 16 year old punk waiting for the viewing to end so I can go get some cough syrup and smoke the cigarettes that I took from my aunt’s purse. At the time I could didn’t have the emotions to cry for the dead.
“Son, you look kind of anxious.” my father said as we were waiting in line to put our hands in the urn.
“Yeah, I really need to get home and do my homework” I lied in reply
“You know,” my dad said in a tone of boredom. “Our neighbor lived an interesting life.”
“ehm?” I noised
“Son, not only did he make important innovations in QBasic but he was also a musician. In fact, he used his computer to create music!”
“Dad, quit being so loud” i wincingly replied
“We’ll talk about this later when we wash up in the restroom”
Shortly later as my father and I washed our late neighbor’s ashes off our fingertips, he started to go on about my future…
"You realize that you can’t stay with me and your aunt after you graduate. Son, you really have to start thinking about what you are going to do once you’re done highschool’
“Dad, I got it all taken care of. I’m going to marry Rebekkah”
“You’re not going to marry no Christ killer!”
“Dad, there’s nothing wrong with Jewish people. You were just telling me that our neighbor lived a great life and he was more Jewish than missing pork.” I argued back
“You’re right,” my father said quietly “you probably should marry Rebekkah anyway. She has always been there for me”
“Dad! quit it.”
Years have passed since the night my father and I talked at the viewing. Rebekkah and I are divorced now. I’m trying to make some fresh moves on myspace. Recently I was google seaching for myspace profile trackers when I came across a familiar name in the search results.
The neighbor that died.
I went to the website and sure enough it was a site dedicated to music tracking. My computer didn’t read the .xm files so I renamed his music files extensions to .mp3. It still wouldn’t play.
As I was trying to figure out how to listen to his music I started to remember my father and I talking at his viewing. I remember touching my tongue with my ashy finger when my father wasn’t looking. There very well may be a little Jew in me after all these years. One thing is for sure, with all these numbers and weird file types, tracking music isn’t my cup of cocoa.