Posted by: morrowsl | November 19, 2013


Fall has always been my favorite season.  The heat of summer is gone, the moon hangs like a gold doubloon in a crystal clear sky, Chrysanthemums line walkways, pumpkins huddle near storefronts, and the early morning air is just going crisp.  It is my birth-month with Cassiopeia high in the night sky and it ends with a family gathering and the second biggest shopping day of the year.


But it’s also the month that John F. Kennedy gets assassinated all over again.  Year in and year out, never a November 22nd passes but what the newspapers and television stations aren’t full of conspiracy theories and old film footage.  Dallas, Texas becomes a carbuncle on the ass of an otherwise beautiful state.


My sister laughs at my anger over this horrendous tradition.  But if ever a soul deserved to leave Purgatory well behind and rest in peace, it is his.


A handsome man of Irish descent, he was the youngest President elected and the youngest to die.  He was born a year before my own father and while I have a vivid picture in my mind of what he looked like as a young man, I have only my father’s face to gauge what JFK might have looked like at 75.  And he had a daughter whose birth-month is also November and who is younger than me by a mere eleven days.  I often wonder if Caroline Kennedy Schlossberg wishes, as I do, that the media would stop killing her father over and over again each November.  More likely, Caroline wishes the media would all go to hell in a beaded handbag.


Maybe I’m approaching this all wrong.  Why allow this disgusting practice to mar my favorite time of year?  Maybe what I should do is beat them at their own game.  Instead of dreading the approaching anniversary of Kennedy’s assassination, I should celebrate his life.


If the shoe had been on the other foot, I could have been poor Caroline standing along the roadside that grey November day in 1963 watching as her father was laid to rest.  Instead I was given a chance to grow up with my father’s laughter ringing in my ears, his kiss on my cheek each night, the smell of his after-shave lingering in the room as he passed.  And while I did eventually have to let him go, I got to see him pass into his golden years as his children and grandchildren and great-grandchildren grew up around him.


So I think I’ll start a new tradition this year.  On November 22 I’ll take a little trip to my local nursery and pick up a pot of Chrysanthemums and take them out to the little spot where Jack is resting and place them in honor of him and the other Jack as well.

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