Sunday, August 5, 2012

Vita brevis - tempus fugit

Funny fact about my dad's obituary picture:  He took his own photo. It was his headshot that he used for his performing gigs. He put up a black trash bag over the downstairs mirror and used the timer on the camera.

Mark Grande
Executive Director
Caroline County Council of the Arts
Mark died Friday, August 5, 2005 at the University of Maryland Medical Center in Baltimore. He was 58.
Born in Minneapolis, Minn., Mark was the son of the late Stanley Joseph Grande and Dorothy Ann Kaster Grande. He graduated from Our Lady of Good Counsel High School in Silver Spring and the University of Maryland.
Mark was a self-employed businessman. He owned a bike shop in Glen Burnie for ten years. He moved to the Denton area in February 1980. He had a camera and optical equipment repair business and played music at many venues in Caroline County and surrounding areas in addition to being executive director of the Caroline County Council of the Arts. He was actively involved with the Caroline County Historical Society, and also was involved in a myriad of other organizations.
Mark is survived by his daughter, Lauren Y. Grande of Pasadena; three sisters, Mary A. Grande of Sykesville, Nancy M. Grand of Surfer's Paradise, Australia, and DeDe Ryan of Boise, Idaho; and one niece, Emily C. Ryan of Boise, Idaho.
A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m., Saturday, August 13, at the Moore Funeral Home P.A., 12 South Second Street, Denton, where friends may call one hour before the service.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial donations be sent to Caroline County Council of the Arts, P.O. Box 292, Denton, MD, 21629. The council plans to develop a Mark Grande Memorial Scholarship in the Arts.

My dad was the first person who told me what "Tempus fugit" meant.

We were in Rehoboth Beach nearly 20 years ago. I was cool back then, wearing my Doc Martens and dyed black no. 1 hair. It was surely during my goth phase; I remember looking for vampire fangs. Back then, vampires didn't glitter and I thought that I had life figured out.

There was a little alley that we walked through off the boardwalk.  The front of the store promised funky things that would appeal to a teenage girl like me. The shop's name was "Tempus fugit." "What a weird name," I said to my dad. "Time passes," he said.  "Huh?"  "Time passes," said dad, ever patient even when dealing with my teenage self. "It means 'Time passes' in Latin."  "Oh," I said, "Whatever."

I have thought about that seemingly insignificant exchange for the past 7 years, especially on this date. Today marks the 7th year of my dad's passing. I suppose that it gets a little bit easier every year, but I still find myself incredibly emotional in the week or so leading up to the date. I am pretty much ready to cry at the drop of a hat. This morning as I waited in line at Dunkin Donuts, I had a hard time keeping it together. Here I am standing in line, sweat-soaked and stinky, sunburned and covered in dirt, with tears running down my face while I updated my Facebook status. I should have known better than to update my status in public:

Before our wedding ceremony in Key West

In the shade of palm trees in the Bahamas

Of course my dad hated the beach, but he liked to spend time with me.  He'd grab a chair and park himself in a shady spot. I know he is always near me...he's reading a book in the shade. That's why I can't see him.

1 comment:

  1. i wish i had known him better. i'm glad you posted this, i learned a lot about him.