Larry David and a memorial
Happy Wednesday everyone! It’s been awhile since I’ve posted, but now that I’m back in LA, it’s time to resume the usual schedule! Last week I wrote two posts - “tá draíocht timpeall orainn” and “create your own curriculum.” If you didn’t get a chance to read either of those posts yet, give them a look when you find the time!
Have you ever seen “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee?” I recently watched the episode where Jerry Seinfeld picks up Larry David and they reminisce about their times working together while also reflecting on their friendship. Larry touches on the topic of his divorce to his now ex-wife and mentions that she was upset that he no longer drank coffee in the mornings and that he’d switched to tea. Larry didn’t see what the big deal was that he wasn’t drinking coffee anymore, but Jerry said that he understood the frustration because sharing morning coffee creates a certain mood.
Why did I bring up this obscure anecdote from an episode of “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee?” Well, I am admittedly a huge Larry David fan. I love his humor and think he’s incredibly funny. But that anecdote struck a chord with me while I was home this past weekend.
While attending my Aunt Sandy’s memorial service, many memories, stories, and anecdotes were shared by various family members. Most of the stories centered around my Aunt Sandy being an amazing mother, around how she always felt that family was the most important thing, and around how she and my Uncle Tanky were high school sweethearts.
It’s funny how certain associations can sneak into your mind at the strangest times. One of my cousins shared that my Aunt Sandy and Uncle Tanky, who were married for 47+ years, shared a cup of coffee together every morning. It was a little ritual they shared as husband and wife but also as best friends. They’d talk about everything and anything and nothing, taking in each other and their surroundings. There were so many little rituals my Aunt and Uncle shared that I was privileged to learn about this past weekend, but none struck me harder than the shared cup of coffee. It’s such a simple shared experience, yet it’s incredibly intimate, too: starting each day with someone you love over the warmth and aroma of a cup of joe.
So why did I bring up the obscure anecdote from a conversation between two comedians I don’t personally know? Because Jerry understood something that Larry couldn’t see in that moment. He couldn’t see that sharing that morning cup of coffee is more than just drinking a hot beverage; it’s about the mood set between two people, which is a lot like marriage if you think about it. It’s brewing one pot of coffee for two people, agreeing to share the experience.
The small things in life become the big things. You’ll always remember big events - engagements, weddings, funerals - but it’s the little rituals that are the most meaningful. The big days are nice memories, but it’s the day-in and day-out experiences and rituals that mean the most. This past weekend was full of so many beautiful memories being shared, and most of the remembrances were the small things: meaningful conversations that helped people through personal struggles, shared cups of coffee, a closet stocked at all times with candy for nieces and nephews and grandkids, and the day-in and day-out commitments of being a devoted partner and a loving mother.
I’ll never forget my Aunt Sandy or the experiences we shared together, especially the Hanson concert she took me to when I was in elementary school. That was badass. And I’ll never forget how I almost chuckled at her memorial service when I heard the story about her daily morning coffee with my Uncle Tanky and immediately thought of Larry David. I think my Aunt Sandy would’ve thought it was funny, too, which is a nice feeling to hold onto now that she’s gone.
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