Sean & Becky Part One

Certainly it’s not the thought of an adventure, that culminates in an abstract appreciation of the convoluted, that gets me all tizzy inside. Certainly, not the thought, or narrow prospect, that by being the early worm, I may in fact be dead, due to the daily feeding habits of the proverbial early bird. Most certainly, beyond this all, I might conjure a guess, and beg then to differ, when the request for my esoteric resignation is called for and asked to be presented in my own blood, as to why I waste my precious essence. Further than this, and I might add neutral countries will protest, at the Nobel Peace Prize given to oil company that invented the newest technology to stop the spewing and cracked well it negligently oversaw; and those protesting countries, neutral for all matters, were in protest that they were not the ones who sprung up this grand scheme to present to the masters of ceremony!

In all, the sense with which I make my matters pleases me little in the turning of words to spin meaning to terms that only seldom are full realized periodically.

There are 46 High Peaks that surround the land occupied by Lake Placid, Keene Valley, Essex County, and it’s neighboring villages. These villages thrive on an original formula, not unlike Coca Cola; Add one Main St thoroughfare; one Congregational Church with thin spiring(<- not actual a word?!), metal topped, white sided steeple; mix in a myriad of front porch adorned homes, set back on an acre of grass, with mixed visages of Americana on display(American Flag, Radial Flier, late Seventies Chevrolet) for all to take in as they pass through; and finally, for protection, and loyalty, one household pet (lab, bull dog, mixed all American Mutt) and place him mid lawn, as still as a painted jockey, perched to perfection, almost death-like still. Stir this in a bowl for ten minutes until thick, and most non-carefully dob out on a Crisco laden baking sheet (not forgetting to lick your fingers of the raw-eggy-salmonella goodness) and cook under the hot summer heat that is upstate NY. And there you have, rising under your easy bake oven light of sky, the High Peaks region of Upstate New York. Delicious!

Little did I know Rebecca Holzhauer and Sean Lyons had climbed 40 of the 46 High Peaks, on their way to joining the elite ranks of the 46rs. To be a member one must climb all 46 named peaks, all above (technically) 4,000ft elevation (Though three are less than, while another never added to the list, was well above). The Peak’s names range from the likes of; Wolfjaw (both upper and lower) Macomb, Rocky Peak, Table Top, to Mount Colden, Dix (and South Dix). It was less an astonishing fact that the pair had accomplished, almost to completion, this feat, and more a decided understanding that two strong, rock-like, personalities, wanting to create a singular life for each other, had endured these trials on the path to their life together. I know much of what I know regarding Becky and Sean as subtle and sure; and like climbing a combined elevation 160,000ft together, I was comforted by the knowledge that this task, like building their life together, be done as a unit. I digress to more mired days, moments muddy with the passage of time, moments before the first steps of these monumental hikes were even a semblance of dream, of a fantasy of a thought. To time, hard for myself to remember, when I did not know Sean.

Sean: musician, literary, evolution, maturity, caring, aloof, sometime asshole, Nissan Maxima, Beef Stroganoff, kind heart, braveheart, Maddox, and Chuck Norris, engaging, enhanced, adult, Becky! My stream of thought, racing down peaks, crippled from a stubborn snowcap and came loose leak into the lakes that careen around the base of these majestic hills; these thoughts edge on insanity, having to grip the jagged edges of my minds own steep cliff, and venture to where our minds-vision open up, as clear pools of glacial ice water, to the moments individuals entwined, around sips of beer, tens of thousands of miles from home!

Sean and I guerilla rampaged New South Wales, with a fury only captured in the annals of B-List, Peter Jackson, horror films. Our triumphant conquering of the Northeast region of Australia near Cairns in Port Douglas, where Sean almost lost his foot, held back the impending rain of the wet season just long enough for us to; “wrastle” with Aborigine spear fishermen, smoke some bush weed, imbibe the regions ration of XXXX gold, and slip out the back entrance unnoticed and unsuspecting to ravage the pokey machine haunts of Sydney’s dive bars and hotel front bars. (Breath) Sean and I for all intensive and practical purposes, met in a TGIF at JFK airport January 7th 2002. It was easy introductions, as we were acquainted via vicarious friends, and having tread water in the same wading pool of similar friends, we slipped into the pejorative battle of witty satire of not caring and feigning interest. (That might be hyperbole of a more calm and tranquil first moment) I was 2 days fresh of the old 21! Having brushed past the carnival barker of life, who could no longer hold that under 21 wooden measuring stick to my long haired and skinny stature, I was officially, well…official. Sean was 18 days, and (little did he know) 600 Peter Jackson cigarettes, just shy of imbibing all the XXXX Gold, Stella Artois, Toohey’s New and Old brewed and released on the eastern seaboard of Australia in those 18 days, away from 21.

What I learned, very early on, as did many, was that it is very easy to grow to like Sean (insert witty statement here), but even more easy to want to kill the motherfucker! And living, eating (roo burgers at Iron Bar), drinking (XXXX Gold, then later Gin and Tonic at Bar 1), roller coaster riding (The Bush Beast) song writing, bar hopping, poetry consuming, Opera frequenting, pokey machine playing, in close proximity for the better part of a month both succeeded in showing us we were meant to be brothers, but that like brothers we knew just how to: turn the screw, to twist the dial, to cause the marble to roll to begin the chain reaction, that would flick the switch that lit the light and rotated the fan that had my bed sheet hanging from it! With Sean proclaiming, as I enter my room, “Holy Sheet!”

It was in these moments, of that Sheet spinning above every bed from every room on that Sydney Woman’s College dormitory floor, now transplanted in my dorm room, allowing me no privacy; To Taxing Sean to a hospital reminiscent of a Sanitarium just North of Port Douglas to await the fate of whether he would get to keep his foot after an Aborigine had cursed him; to he and I making eye contact as our ride rolled up to the largest (and only) Theme Park in the Southern Hemisphere, and in that moment, eyes locked, realizing we made the biggest mistake by bypassing the Blue Mountains to check out the Bush Beast and Anal Probe; but instead of admitting defeat (a trait we new little of) we instead decided to write our own songs about the amazing Amusement Park and perform them for the Blue Mountain crew, exclaiming the fun and excitement they missed during Tony and Joleen’s Magical Mystery Adventure, and almost convincing them.

These moments, too many to dictate or even try to explain. This fated our friendship, which was sealed early on when speaking to the general group, we exclaimed, in perfect pitch and tone, at exactly the same inflection, at exactly the same time: “Beef Stroganoff”


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