I’m trying to think back on my family life growing up. E once mentioned that she thought I probably hadn’t gotten much affection from my father as a kid. This was, of course, a kind of knee jerk, pseudo-psychological analysis based on less than nothing. In fact, it was always clear to me that he was hyper-conscious of showing affection, even though it seemed to be unfamiliar and tentative territory for him. I think he shares with me a strange kind of shyness that makes us easily embarrassed, but I never felt that this embarrassment equaled a lack of affection.
My mother, although more outwardly emotional that my father, is also very tentative in approaching issue that might be sensitive, even my tattoos.
On the morning of 9/11/01, when she called me during the attack on the World Trade Center, Chris Weingarten had slept on my sofa the night before. At the time, he was living with relatives in New Jersey and doing an internship at CMJ magazine. If we were out late, as we were the night before, he would miss the last bus to New Jersey and crash at my apartment. When she called and woke me up after the first plane hit, I woke up Chris and told him. When she heard me talking to another man, she started asking me odd questions that I didn’t understand at the time. Are you home? Who’s there with you? I started to get the feeling that she thought I might have spent the night with a male lover, but she wasn’t sure how to breach the subject. Under the circumstances, I’m not sure why it would have been interesting or important.