So, I haven’t actually WRITTEN anything on here that amounted to more than a snippet of text or an assignment from creative writing. Which is kind of strange. I don’t know. Maybe I’ve just moved on to a different stage of my life that’s less reflective and more projective. I’m okay with that. Though I do miss thinking for thinking’s sake.

Anyway, I thought I’d write down some of my thoughts about where my life is going in terms of school (which, when I think about it, is where my life’s going in general, since I don’t really have ‘life’ outside of school [you know what I mean!]).

I’ve recently decided to drop my chem major down to a minor, pick up a physics minor, and use math as my ‘real’ major. Probably a dumb choice. Probably a choice I’ll change 10 more times before I graduate (although I’m starting to realize that the chances for changing without consequences are getting fewer and farther between… what, I’m graduating next year?!).

But I’m sick of chemistry. Honestly, it’s kind of sad I didn’t realize this a lot sooner. Well, I did realize it, but I just didn’t act on it. And now it’s almost too late. This is the final hour. I change now, or forever hold my peace. And wonder for the rest of my life why I didn’t just go and stop being stupid for one second.

I mean, I should have figured it out my sophomore year. Heck, the end of my freshman year. But the funny thing is, when you’re not looking for solutions, the only available solutions tend to suck. So I stuck with chem. Even though I’ve hated chem labs since high school. Even though I had less than a loving relationship with organic chemistry. Even though all signs pointed to ‘hey, there isn’t enough math here!’ D’oh. And duh!

And then last week, I had the epiphany that it doesn’t have to be this way. I don’t have to get a chem major. I don’t know why I felt like I owed the world that. Or that I owed myself that. I don’t know what possible line of reasoning lead me down that path. I can get a job with a math major. I can get into grad school with a math major. And then I don’t have to fritter away in stupid pointless labs that will do absolutely NOTHING for my future endeavors / careers and just leave me more frustrated with myself.

Anyway, long story short, again, no more chem major. I’m sad to see it go. But in a way, I’m also breathing a giant sigh of relief!

So here’s my preliminary schedule for next semester:

Advanced Physical Chemistry

Computational Physics

Abstract Algebra

Islamic Mysticism (because I do still go to a liberal arts college, afterall…)

Mind, Matter, and Magic (it’s about the scientific revolution. Basically, I have to defend science from the clutches of the silly humanities majors)

No lab. The only chemistry course will be chock full of math. And then there’s physics and math. This, my friend, is what I should have been doing all along.

Hindsight is twenty twenty. I shouldn’t have took that many (chemistry classes).

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Trinitrotoluene

October 29, 2008

This is my fiction piece for creative writing. Enjoy!

“It was a miracle!”

I’d been hearing that a lot lately. Since the accident. The explosion. But I didn’t want to hear it then. And especially not from Josh.

“It was a miracle that you made it out of there alive. And not like a ‘gee, isn’t that nice’ sort of miracle. I mean a ‘God is smiling on you’ miracle!”

Josh and I didn’t really see eye to eye. But of all my friends, he was the only one I ever saw regularly since the accident. Well, met with. I didn’t see much those days. Not since the explosion.

But I could imagine him there. His Bible in one hand and his rosary in the other. Did I mention that Josh would go to Divinity School? At the time he was a chemist. Some things never cease to amaze me.

“I don’t think it was so much a miracle,” I told him. “I mean, I just lucked out.”

Yeah, luck. Not exactly how I remembered. I was TAing an organic chemistry lab full of snot-nosed kids. The price I paid for a free ride through grad school. Half of students were ‘future’ doctors, if their future would ever come. The lab was pretty simple: the nitration of naphthalene. Naphthalene, more commonly known as ‘mothballs.’ So the lab smelled like old people. A comforting smell. Especially since the lab usually smelled like something that might kill you if you just looked at it wrong. Not this week, though. Just old people.

This week’s lab would be like all the others. The kids would mix together a few solutions, stir, and heat. Presto, chango, like alchemy, something different would come out the other end. I don’t think many people realize that chemistry is just glorified cooking. If you can cook a casserole, you can cook methamphetamine. One’s just worth a lot more. And the ingredients are a lot harder to come by.

Anyway, all the kids were scurrying around, pantomiming the molecules in the solutions they were stirring. So far, so good. I hadn’t heard the distinctive crash of glassware. Or the groan of someone that managed to screw up directions like ‘mix A with B.’ Nobody was crying yet. This was a good day, by any standard.

As I surveyed the lab, I could see the looks of despair on some of the students faces. No matter how much I tried to reassure them, they always had the same stunned look on their faces. I wished I could show them how it all fits together. Show them the great gleaming whole that was just beyond their grasp. Instead, I continued my parole, looking for problems before they got out of control.

Everything seemed routine. Then I walked up to the hood of Pyro. His real name was Pierre, but nobody called him that. He was that one kid in lab that nobody paid much attention to. To be honest, I don’t even think he was a science major. I’m not sure how he got into the class. But he did. And he enjoyed himself. This was a kid who took to the lab naturally. But not today. He was scanning his hood frantically. Something was wrong. I ran over to him, but it was too late.

That’s when the hood exploded. Plastic and glass came from all directions. This is why we wear safety goggles, I thought during the split second before the shrapnel hit me. After the initial shock of impact, I was surprised to find that I was still alive. That relief was quickly replaced by dread. The fireball had consumed half the lab. The sprinkler system was on, but the water stood no chance of stopping the fire. Everything was burning. I guess they’re not so far off calling this place hell, I thought. While running for the fire extinguisher, I slipped on some solution that had been knocked to the floor. Darkness consumed me.

I woke up in a hospital bed a few hours late. I couldn’t see. They told me later that the chem lab had been evacuated. A three-alarm fire destroyed the lab area. A group of undergraduates banded together to pull me out. But not before the fire had burnt consumed half my face. The safety goggles melted, fusing with my eyelids. So much for eye protection.  Pyro – sorry – Pierre hadn’t made it. Too many injuries from the explosion. Five other students had been badly burned.

The first moment I could talk, my curiosity got the best of me. I had to know what had exploded. So I asked. The arson team had just filed their report. “TNT,” they said.

It turns out that Pyro had gotten his hands on some toluene. Not many people know that TNT stands for trinitrotoluene. But Pyro did. Apparently he hadn’t been napping during his organic lecture. I mean, the professors don’t go and tell you this stuff. But it doesn’t take a rocket scientist (or an organic chemist) to figure out that if you polynitrate toluene, you’ll end up with something rather explosive. It just takes an internet connection and Wikipedia. Unfortunately for Pyro, toluene is a pretty common solvent. So all he had to do to get his hands on it was walk up to the dispensing hood and pull a lever. Out pours a clear, odorless liquid. A liquid that happens to be pretty dangerous when mixed with sulfuric and nitric acid.

Unfortunately, the professors also don’t tell you that the nitration of toluene can get out of control really fast. There’s a reason bombers used ammonium nitrate when it was available. You didn’t risk blowing yourself up. The nitration of toluene is incredibly exothermic. Add to that the heat Pyro was supplying to the reaction through the heating mantle, and he had no chance.

Yeah, all of this and Josh called it a miracle.

“Don’t you see? You’re alive. You were standing right in front of TNT when it exploded and you made it out alive!”

I could picture the look on his face. Exasperation mixed with wonder. Throw in a little disdain for good measure.

“You know I don’t believe in miracles, Josh. And losing my sight certainly isn’t going to change that. Not for the better, at least.”

I could hear Josh shift on his feet. A nurse walked into the room to check my chart. Susan. I could smell her perfume. My senses really had improved in the months since the accident. I could hear babies crying in the maternity ward. And I could swear that I smelled formaldehyde somewhere in the distance.

“They’re keeping your position for you,” Josh said. “I’ve been talking to Dr. Vansing, and he says that they’ll be happy to take you back when you’re ready to come back.”

There was an uncomfortable silence. I could tell Josh was trying to cheer me up. But how do you cheer up a blind man? Not with a promise of returning to ‘normal.’

“Do you know what we had been talking about in lecture the day of the… accident,” I said.

“Last I’d heard you were talking about thermodynamics.”

“Yeah, the Second Law. The one about disorder. I’ve decided it gets the short end of the science stick.”

“What do you mean?”

“Well, everyone’s so focused on evolution. But the real bombshell is the Second Law. ‘Shit happens. The universe is unfair. And it’s just getting even more so by the second.’ Now’s the time to party before the heat death of the universe!”

Another awkward silence. Josh did not appreciate when I got this way. Not that this was anything new since the accident. In undergraduate, Josh and I would pull all-nighters talking about this kind of stuff. Wine and Sartre. Vodka and Dostoyevsky. We tried to keep our discussions themed. So what if we were chemists? It didn’t mean we couldn’t do some thinking on the side.

Josh had gotten me a Braille Bible. I fingered the pages now. Josh breathed a sigh of relief. It all felt like bumps to me.

“Do you ever think about it?” I  said.

“About what?”

“About the heat death of the universe? What it will be like once all the energy is gone and all that’s left is darkness?”

“I don’t know,” he said. “I can’t imagine it would be all that nice a place to be.”

“No, I don’t imagine so.”

Josh left me to my musings. I heard him shuffle out of the room. Close the door. Walk down the hall. If I tried, I though I could hear his car starting. Everything was normal.

Staring through the darkness that was once my vision, I could see molecules swirling. A simplified dance, for sure. But still comforting in its simplicity. There, in my minds eye, I saw a tetrahedron, a cube, an octahedron. Plato had been surprisingly prescient in his prediction of the building blocks of matter. Then out of the corner of my eye I saw a hexagon, ornamented with four glowing orbs, three red, one blue. This too was beautiful. I could see it swirling, dancing, playing. But then more appeared, filling my view. Suddenly, they began to shake, shiver, vibrate. And then an explosion. And then nothing.

Sitting there in the blackness, I felt the weight of my body on the hospital bed. I heard the clanking of a candy striper in the hallway. I smelt, well, hospital smell. I could even taste the sirloin steak I’d eaten an hour before. Despite all the stimulation coming into my body, I couldn’t help but think about the darkness that was coming. It wouldn’t come for a googol years. But I could wait. From my solitary room in a solitary corner of a solitary planet in a solitary galaxy in a solitary universe, I would wait.

October 27, 2008

This is what the Republican Party has done to us this year: It has placed within reach of the Oval Office a woman who is a religious fanatic and a proud, boastful ignoramus. Those who despise science and learning are not anti-elitist. They are morally and intellectually slothful people who are secretly envious of the educated and the cultured. And those who prate of spiritual warfare and demons are not just “people of faith” but theocratic bullies. On Nov. 4, anyone who cares for the Constitution has a clear duty to repudiate this wickedness and stupidity.

– Christopher Hitches in Sarah Palin’s War on Science

Sorry to be so political lately, but seriously. There’s crazy. And then there’s stupid.

And I don’t want either of them near the White House any time soon.

October 25, 2008

As long as J is Lipschitz continuous and nonsingular at x and the initial guess is good enough, the convergence of this iteration is quadratic.

– from Numerical Analysis by Lloyd N. Trefethen

Is it just me? Or is that the funniest sentence you didn’t understand?

Where does a lot of that earmark money end up anyway? […] You’ve heard about some of these pet projects they really don’t make a whole lot of sense and sometimes these dollars go to projects that have little or nothing to do with the public good. Things like fruit fly research in Paris, France. I kid you not. [Hearty laughter from the Real Americans in the background.]

– Potential Future Vice-President Sarah Palin

Oh Sarah, if only there wasn’t a non-zero possibility that you could be the next vice-president of the United States, your complete lack of understanding about basic science research would be funny.

No, now it’s just scary.

Basic science gets results. Even stuff that the ‘Real America’ can appreciate. Well, maybe not appreciate. I guess ‘use’ would be the right word. Science is too ‘hard’ for them to appreciate something as marvelous as a refrigerator (thermodynamics, anyone?). Or, say, a computer (electrical engineering… though it owes a lot to electromagnetism). Yeah, and that silly ‘fruit fly research,’ even (“genetics… what has that done for me lately…”).

Maybe God should stop blessing America and start putting a little more intelligence (or common sense) in our ‘Real’ counterparts.

Sigh.

Two more weeks!

The road I walk is paved in gold
To glorify my platinum soul
I’ll buy my way to talk to God
So he can live with what I’m not

The selfish blood runs through my veins
I gave up everything for fame
I am the lie that you adore
I feed the rich and fuck the poor

I got, you want
It just, don’t stop
I got, you want
It just, don’t stop

This is entertainment
Lies are entertainment
You are down on your knees
Begging me for more

The road I walk is paved in gold
To glorify my platinum soul
I am the closest thing to God
So worship me and never stop

The wretched blood runs through my veins
I gave up everything for fame
I am the lie that you adore
Now feed the rich, fuck the poor

I got, you want
It just, don’t stop
I got, you want
It just, don’t stop

This is entertainment
Lies are entertainment
You are down on your knees
Begging me for more

Dear future
I bought you
I own the rights

To let go
Destroy you
This is my life

Dear future
I bought you
I own the rights

To let go
Destroy you
This is my life, inside

I’ve got, you want
It just, don’t stop
I’ve got, you want
It just, don’t stop

This is entertainment
Lies are entertainment
You are down on your knees
Begging me for more
Begging me for more
Begging me for more

A Facebook Birthday

October 5, 2008

Another creative writing piece. This was my ‘big one.’ We each chose to focus on one area of writing. I chose creative non-fiction. Enjoy.

Birthdays have changed. They’re no longer about the number of gifts you receive, or the number of cards your relatives send. They’re not even about the number of birthday punches you have to endure. These days more than ever, at least for the 13 to 25 set, birthdays seem to be about the number of wallposts you receive on Facebook.

My third Facebook birthday started like all the others. The night before, wrapping up a marathon homework assignment, I found myself drawn to check my e-mail. Click. Click. Aaah. The internet, connection, relatedness: other generations had their booze, their heroine, their cocaine. Ours has Facebook. Every time I open Outlook, as the little progress wheel starts spinning, I can feel my insides flutter. This time, I know there will be human contact for me. This time I’ll get a hit. Unlike most other nights, tonight I won’t leave empty-handed. Ding ding ding. I’ve got mail!

Just for good measure (and a little bit of the obligatory postmodern self-consciousness), I feel the need to preface this work by stating that I should maybe — possibly — not be writing it. Facebook isn’t eternal or enduring. It doesn’t represent the pinnacle of human achievement or even something that people in 10 years will be talking about (Friendster, anyone?). But it does epitomize our generation. Even more so on a Facebook birthday.

For those not in the know, Facebook is a social networking site. It was launched by Mark Zuckerberg on February 4, 2004. Zuckerberg, a student at Harvard, originally created the site as a way for Harvard students to keep in touch. The name comes from the real-world paper ‘facebooks’ some colleges distributed to new students. These books were filled with the pictures and names of all the students and faculty at the college. Facebook soon expanded to include Stanford, Columbia, Yale, and eventually all undergraduate institutions. In the fall of 2005, Facebook was opened to the preening masses of high school students. By the very next year, it became a no-holds barred stomping ground for anyone with a valid e-mail address and too much time on their hands.

But enough about Facebook’s birthdays. Let’s talk about mine. Birthdays bring my thoughts back to the beginning. Not of my life. Of my online life. I can hardly remember a time without the internet. I figure I must have lived half my life without it. But that was the half that I don’t much remember anyway: a blur of action figures, multiplication tables, video games, and geography lessons. Then, in 4th grade, we got AOL. America Online, a quaint relic of earlier times was once the sole ISP for my hometown. I remember with a certain relish returning home the first time to find my mom at the computer, ‘surfing the web.’ “What would you like your ‘screen name’ to be, David? Now, you’re not allowed to have your real name in it.” Always mindful of safety, and probably terrified by all the prime time news shows listing the various internet predators on the prowl, my mother understood that I shouldn’t pick a screen name with identifying characteristics. So I chose to be Arthur4000, after King Arthur, a childhood fascination. It turns out that Arthur2000 (the new millennia just over the horizon) was already taken.

“Now, you’re not allowed to have your real name in it.” How times have changed. Now Facebook pages overflow with personal information: date of birth, hometown, relationship status, political and religious views, not to mention one giant picture in the upper left hand corner to announce to the world what you look like. People I don’t even know can learn more about me by just looking at my ‘page’ than I will ever know about my grandparents. But this is normal. Before there was Facebook, there was MySpace.

Ah, MySpace. Facebook’s ugly older sister. She may be hipper, have more friends, and know all the coolest bands, but she still gets no respect. The fact is MySpace has 73 millions users in the US, compared Facebook’s 36 million. But somehow, for me at least, Facebook is just better. The comparative comes from a mixture of one part aesthetic, one part connectedness, and eight parts elitism. The common wisdom is that MySpace allows users to customize their pages, and therefore MySpace allows its users to customize their pages poorly. Just as in government, democracy of design can lead to some really horrible decisions. Facebook, on the other hand, wields an iron fist. You can change a few things here or there on your page. In the end, though, you’re bound by the great Zuckerberg. And Facebook creates a sort of feedback loop: all of my friends are on Facebook, so I find myself using Facebook more often, which leads to more friends joining, ad infinitum.

Back to my birthday. (Did I mention that it was my 21st? If not, you can always check Facebook). When I wake up, the first thing I do upon getting out of bed, the same as I do every morning, is check my e-mail. Click. Click. Seven new wallposts. A giant hit. The messages are generic: some mixture of “happy birthday” or “happy b-day,” occasionally suffixed with, “I hope you have a great one!” I know from personal experience that these messages are so simple to write. They take so little time and so little thought. Mark Zuckerberg even supplies a list of all the upcoming birthdays in a convenient box in the right most side of the page. Even though I know each message is only pseudo-human contact, really no better than an elevator conversation with a stranger or a head nod to a friend on the street, receiving them on this day and in this quantity makes them feel much more real. Despite the fact that half the messages come from people I haven’t spoken to in years and probably won’t speak to again outside of Facebook, I still get a rush. We’re social animals in a digital world.

Which is humorous, because as I go through my day, only one or two people wish me a ‘real-world’ happy birthday. Even some of my closest friends don’t pass on the mandatory ‘happy birthday!’ in person, perhaps because they felt the obligation met via Facebook. Does Facebook change the dynamics of a birthday greeting? It reminds me of elementary school, when on our birthday we were expected to bring in treats for our class. One friend, a Jehovah’s Witness, was not allowed to celebrate his birthday. This is what we remembered. Not all the cupcakes and brownies and cakes. No, this one strange friend who broke our custom.

After clicking through some more birthday greetings, I continue on to browse through the Facebook home page. I’m struck by the number of groups complaining about the ‘new’ Facebook. For the uninitiated, Facebook has recently changed its page layout from a ‘classic’ minimalist style (can something less than 4 years old really be classic?) to a more modern, free-for-all, everything-all-at-once style more conducive to the modern age. And Facebook veterans don’t like it. I’m invited to join many groups, all of them some flavor of ‘1,000,000+ to Bring Back Old Facebook.’ This group has 356,379 members. Another group has 456,507.

These groups reached this size in a matter of days, not months. The ‘viral’ ability of Facebook to organize half a million people is astounding. But what the millions decide to organize around is similarly baffling. In the past, millions joined arms to fight oppressive governments or overthrow old ways of thought. In the sixties, our parents marched on Washington to protest an unjust war. Our generation rallies to overthrow the tyranny of an ugly design. Facebook has the unhealthy ability to make it feel like you’ve accomplished something when you really haven’t. Joining a group against the genocide in Darfur doesn’t ‘raise consciousness,’ to use a term from my parents’ generation. It deadens it by creating a false sense of achievement. If Facebook had been around in the sixties, would the protests still have happened? Or would all the hippies have logged onto Facebook, congratulated themselves on being a member of ten groups denouncing the United States’ unjust war, and then clicked over to something more entertaining? Perhaps our generation simply finds a different meaning in Timothy Leary’s admonition to “turn on, tune in, drop out.”

I know I should do something more. More than continuously check Facebook to see if someone else has noticed it’s my birthday. Especially on my birthday. On this day, I’m especially aware of the need to do something ‘real,’ something unmediated, something that will last should all technology go up in some horrible fire of electrons. Instead, I check my e-mail one more time. Who knows? Maybe someone else noticed me.

Click. I have to make sure that all of my closest friends have left me a birthday greeting. Even in the deluge of quasi-friends, I have certain ‘real’ friends that stand out. Those are the ones that I really want to leave me a message. When I notice one or two haven’t written me, including my best friend from high school, I’m hurt more than I should be. Though maybe that’s a good thing: there is still some qualia amidst the quanta. I am still human.

My high school friend writes me later that day. Click.

I make light of this whole situation. But really, Facebook is big. Big in the same way that the printing press was big. Big in the same way that television culture was big. Somehow, we’ve managed to become both hypersocialized and hyperindividualized. We’re always on, always tuned in. We have the capability, and often the will, to know what any friend in the world is doing at any time. I made the joke once that my high school class’ 25th year reunion would be a Facebook group. And then I made a Facebook group for it. How inanely modern.

I read a book once by the anthropologist Thomas de Zengotita. This was back when I read books instead of reading web pages and Facebook walls. The book was Mediated: How the Media Shapes Your World and the Way You Live in It. That book has a lot to say about our culture. So much so that I wish to share some words of Dr. Zengotita with you:

“… representational technologies have colonized our minds. That may be the simplest, deepest way to characterize the whole history of representation. To the extent that our thoughts no longer wander along on their own, stocked only with materials drawn from direct experience, to the extent they follow flows of representation instead — to just that extent we don’t think our own thoughts. Literally.

Keep in mind, this book was written in 2005. Three whole years before my Facebook birthday. Dr. Zengotita was ahead of his time. We’re too busy to think our own thoughts. Too busy thinking about what everyone else is thinking about us.
In the end, over the course of three days, fifty-three people wrote on my wall to wish me happy birthday. That in itself is not impressive. I am not the type to base my self-worth around the number of wallposts I get, or the number of friends I have. And I know I’m nowhere near as well connected as most. The impressive part is that a person like me should get that many at all. I’m the ‘quiet type.’ An introvert. How do over fifty people notice someone who spends most of his life attempting to stay out of the spotlight?

This was my third real ‘Facebook birthday.’ One for each year of college so far. I can’t imagine there are that many more left. Something new and different will certainly supplant Facebook, just as Facebook supplanted MySpace. I can only guess that the new incarnation will be even more addictive. My generation is fighting a losing battle. Future generations have already lost.

I’ve been speaking of Facebook as some sort of monolith, a system that has so many things right and wrong with it. Obviously, though, a site that pegs itself as a social network is no better or worse than the people who populate it. We feed it with our teenage angst, our adult worries, and our middle-aged regrets. Like television, Facebook is real life, only more so. Unlike television, which only gets its material from an elite group of writers and producers, Facebook has the whole world as a staff. The internet is one of the greatest social experiments yet attempted by humanity. And Facebook will chronicle a few steps along the way.

Imagine 1000 years in the future. 1000 years ago, Western Europe was just entering the dark ages. Think of it. Where will we be in 1000 years? There’s no way to know. But isn’t it interesting to think that future historians will have pile after pile of hard drives to sift through. They’ll know more about us than we could possibly know about past peoples, more perhaps than they could ever want to know. And in one of those ancient hard drives, somewhere buried deep inside the magnetic ribbons, will be all the data from my Facebook birthday. Will they notice me?

Click.

Fun fact: I checked Facebook twenty-five times while writing this piece. Make that twenty-six. I had good reasons. I needed to get my facts straight. And read over the messages sent to me on my birthday. Oh, and a good friend left me an interesting wall post. Yes, I had a good reason to take my attention off this paper every time. Continuous partial attention, they call it. Much fancier sounding than ‘multi-tasking.’ Plus, CPA sounds like a syndrome. Add it to the DSM-IV. Click.

David Darmon is amazed that he finished this essay.

My child arrived just the other day
He came to the world in the usual way
But there were planes to catch and bills to pay
He learned to walk while I was away
And he was talkin’ ‘fore I knew it, and as he grew
He’d say “I’m gonna be like you dad
You know I’m gonna be like you”

And the cat’s in the cradle and the silver spoon
Little boy blue and the man on the moon
When you comin’ home dad?
I don’t know when, but we’ll get together then son
You know we’ll have a good time then

My son turned ten just the other day
He said, “Thanks for the ball, Dad, come on let’s play
Can you teach me to throw”, I said “Not today
I got a lot to do”, he said, “That’s ok”
And he walked away but his smile never dimmed
And said, “I’m gonna be like him, yeah
You know I’m gonna be like him”

And the cat’s in the cradle and the silver spoon
Little boy blue and the man on the moon
When you comin’ home son?
I don’t know when, but we’ll get together then son
You know we’ll have a good time then

Well, he came home from college just the other day
So much like a man I just had to say
“Son, I’m proud of you, can you sit for a while?”
He shook his head and said with a smile
“What I’d really like, Dad, is to borrow the car keys
See you later, can I have them please?”

And the cat’s in the cradle and the silver spoon
Little boy blue and the man on the moon
When you comin’ home son?
I don’t know when, but we’ll get together then son
You know we’ll have a good time then

I’ve long since retired, my son’s moved away
I called him up just the other day
I said, “I’d like to see you if you don’t mind”
He said, “I’d love to, Dad, if I can find the time
You see my new job’s a hassle and kids have the flu
But it’s sure nice talking to you, Dad
It’s been sure nice talking to you”

And as I hung up the phone it occurred to me
He’d grown up just like me
My boy was just like me

And the cat’s in the cradle and the silver spoon
Little boy blue and the man on the moon
When you comin’ home son?
I don’t know when, but we’ll get together then son
You know we’ll have a good time then