Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Christmas Time

My family used to love the Holidays.  We look forward to the boys' winter breaks.  We would shop like crazy, making sure the boys were lavished with gifts.  As the boys got older, life became more stressful, but we still could not wait for the boys Christmas vacation.  When Marcus started college this would be the longest time he would be home.  Sure he came home for Thanks Giving and Summer Break but Christmas time is when he is home most.  He would bring home his laptop and his Sony PS3. He would just veg-out in front of the family TV cussing up a storm at whatever game he is trying to complete.  The past couple of years he and Alex really got into the Call of Duty games and will play on-line against other potty mouthed games from all over the country.  They can do this for hours.  There would be fits of loudness counterbalanced with moments of unbearable silence.  It was the same when the boys were much younger and the games and consoles were much cheaper.  Marcus and then Alex later would get games and they would retreat to their rooms and play that new game until they finish it.  Sometimes it will take almost 24 hours non-stop.  I think from the time Marcus was eight years-old Christmas meant a new video game for him.  He lived for those games.  As he got older he "bought" his own games as soon as they were released, so it became moot to buy him the latest hot game.

Marcus' last Christmas was really easy for us to buy him gifts.  He specified he wanted a digital camera.  He needed was desperately for his upcoming European Trip.  Trisha and I really researched the cameras and we settled on the latest Nikon Coolpics model.  He was plenty pleased with the ease of use and the advance features of the camera.  I cannot recall the other gifts we game him that year, but the thew two main gifts were the camera and Eddie Murphy's Delirious DVD.  Aside from video games, Marcus loved stand-up comedy.  He was somewhat puzzled when he opened the gift, but I assured him that Eddie Murphy was one of the greatest stand-up comedians of all time.  I told him, even though all he knows of Eddie is his current Disney clean image, he will love this DVD.  I told him the subjects maybe dated, but most of the humor will still translate. 

Well the camera was well used.  He took hundreds of pictures in Europe and filmed dozens of videos.  Every city they stopped in meant at least a hundred pictures and a video of the hotel/hostel room they stayed in.  These videos are some of my most precious mementos of my son.  One can really hear his humor and excitement in his voice.  His laughter resonates and sometimes his vanity permeates through and through.  Most of all his innocence and naivete' is pronounced.  Each video is as wide-eyed and unpretentious as our son.  There was almost a formula to each video.  Show the door, the beds, the tv, the food (if any), the bath and the toilet, of course.  Then he would film a few seconds of video outside the window.  He would make comments about the weather or cars.  All unrehearsed and in one take.  That was our boy, being himself, carefree and fun.

Here is a sample of those videos.

The DVD on the other hand was never used.  In fact it still remains un-opened in its original shrink wrap.  Marcus never got to watch it.  He took it back to Kansas with him with intentions on watching it I am certain.  Now it sits along with his belongings we picked up from his dorm room.  I have seen Delirious dozens of times.  I doubt I will ever watch it again. 

Marcus used that camera so much.  This is the last image he shot.