Sunday, March 24, 2013

On This Day in 1998: Tuesday, March 24

Beaty Field:  The Path

The boys and I stayed up last night to watch the entire Academy Awards telecast. As the evening progressed, the boys got into the spirit of rooting for “Titanic”. At one point, Eddie announced, “I’m going to see ‘Titanic’ the next time you go.”

Even though it extended beyond three hours, I really enjoyed the show. Billy Crystal is the perfect host. I enjoyed the clips of past award winners. I thought Stanley Donen’s lifetime achievement award was the highlight of the evening.

We had some sunshine yesterday afternoon, although the temperature remained in the 30s. The boys and I took a walk to Beaty Field, Andy and I shooting hoops, Eddie ambling over to the playground area and amusing himself on the equipment . The ground wasn’t nearly as soggy as I thought it would be, considering that it was recently under water. Before returning to the house, we strolled along “the path”, throwing sticks and stones into the creek. I didn’t find much in the way of “skipworthy” material.

Beaty Field panorama

The boys played with Scottie yesterday morning at his house. While they were gone, I took a walk – to no place in particular, and then cleaned out the debris in the car, some leftover cups of soda still sitting on the shelf behind the back seat, a scattering of French fries on the floor.

Dad spends most of the day slumped in his chair in the living room. His waking moments appear to be on the decline, his lucid moments even more so. His fading sense of reality is further clouded by television and, Mom suspects, dreams. It’s not like the rest of the family ignores him, but sometimes I wonder if they could try to engage him more. But now that speaking has become difficult for him, providing him a protective environment is the best that can be offered. Ironically, I sometimes feel uncomfortable asking questions about Dad’s condition, but unless I ask, very little information is ever forthcoming.

Allegheny River in Warren, Pennsylvania, looking west from Hickory Street Bridge

I worked on our federal and state tax forms earlier today. The preliminary results are about what I expected. Due to my additional income from the University last year, we are going to owe approximately $3,000 in federal taxes. Our refund from the state will amount to slightly less than $500. Mr. Procrastinator has not yet filled out the form to have a larger deduction taken from my biweekly paychecks, something I said I was going to do last year. Your deduction amounts to 17% of your gross pay. Mine is slightly under 12% I need to boost my federal deduction by $100 per paycheck.

Tomorrow morning we begin our trek home. I don’t have a motel reservation for our first night but I have an 800 number for Ramada Inn that I plan to call later today. I’m not too concerned. I would think a midweek stayover in South suburban Chicago is easy to find. The motel’s gotta have an indoor pool, though.

Allegheny River, Warren, Pennsylvania, looking east toward Hickory Street Bridge

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