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  • Writer's pictureDana Starr

Something in a Sunday

There's something in a Sunday that makes a body feel alone. I did not write that sentence. Kris Kristofferson wrote that for his most excellent song "Sunday Morning Coming Down." There is most definitely something in a Sunday. What is it? What makes Sunday so special? I love, love, love Sunday. I sleep late every day; however, on Sunday I sleep super late. There's no reason to get out of bed. My children are grown. My husband is walking the canyon. No one needs me so I just let my mind wander. I drift in and out of sleep. Eventually, I'll have my first hot flash of the day, throw the covers off my sweaty body and with a considerable amount of effort heave myself out of bed.

Brunch is next. Sometimes, it's simple: tea and toast. Sometimes, it's elaborate: bacon, biscuits and gravy and sweet pickles. It's so weird that my family eats sweet pickles with biscuits and gravy, but my mamaw did it and my mom does it and so I do it too. The Spousal Unit and I always have brunch in front of the TV so we can watch CBS Sunday Morning with Charles Osgood.

BuzzFeed is next. I can spend hours and hours reading the online feature stories recommended by BuzzFeed. Stories from The New York Times Magazine, GQ, The New Yorker, The Wall Street Journal, etc. etc. etc. I read about how the inevitable earthquake will eventually hit California and it will not be survivable; about how the men and women who cut and paint toenails and fingernails in the New York City area are virtually slaves; about how and why people displaced due to Hurricane Katrina are still struggling ten years later. While I'm reading, I'm thinking to myself, "I sure could be doing some laundry right now or I sure could sweep off the front porch right now or I sure could get up and pee right now, but I don't do any of those things. Maybe I'll get up and get a snack, but that's about as far as my effort goes on a lazy Sunday afternoon in my pajamas. Have you ever spent a Sunday in your pajamas? If not, I highly recommend it.

The most important part of Sunday is next. It's time to light the charcoal and grill some salmon, steak, chicken, sausage, mushrooms, corn-on-the-cob, etc. etc. etc. Of course, I don't actually do the grilling because that would require me to go outside and I don't do outside. I have an aversion to being outdoors because it's just too outdoorsy for me. Besides, I can't very well hang around outside in my pajamas. The Spousal Unit has no problem with outside so he's the grill master.

Sunday night TV is next. Don't get me started on Sunday night TV. There are so many excellent programs on Sunday night. You know it's a good TV night when you can't decide between Downton Abbey, The Walking Dead, Homeland or Shameless. The Spousal Unit doesn't even try to compete with me for TV time on Sunday night. He just goes to the man cave, where the little TV is located, and makes himself comfortable.

Unlike Kris Kristofferson, I don't feel alone on a Sunday, but that does remind me of a Sunday when I truly was alone on a very crisp and chilly November day in Amsterdam. It was 12 years ago, and I was there on business. I had a free day, because it was Sunday, so I just wandered the streets alone. I wasn't really sure exactly where I was in the city, but I loved that it was so different from what I was accustomed to. There were bikes everywhere and very few cars. I saw a family of five on one bike. I drank hot chocolate and ate something that I couldn't pronounce, but it was delicious and I ended up at the Rijks Museum. The place was spectacular. I spent the afternoon with paintings by Vermeer and other brilliant Dutch artists. I was in heaven until I almost got tossed out of the joint for accidentally using the flash on my camera while taking a picture of Rembrandt's The Night Watch. There were signs everywhere banning flash photography, and I really thought my flash was off but not so much.

After feasting my eyes for hours, I ended up in the gift shop and purchased a bunch of cheap posters because the place was being remodeled and they were getting rid of tons of old stuff. They didn't actually call it a garage sale, but that's what it was. I got some great art and spent a total of about ten euros. One of the posters really caught my eye because it reminded me of a lazy Sunday morning in bed. Zondag is printed across the top of the poster. I had no idea what Zondag meant in English, but I just knew the poster appealed to me and I had to have it. I owned the thing a dozen years before it occurred to me to find out what Zondag means. Well, guess what??? It means Sunday in dutch. Who knew?

Major props to Kris Kristofferson for writing this:

Sunday Morning Coming Down

Well, I woke up Sunday morning With no way to hold my head that didn't hurt. And the beer I had for breakfast wasn't bad, So I had one more for dessert. Then I fumbled in my closet through my clothes And found my cleanest dirty shirt. Then I washed my face and combed my hair And stumbled down the stairs to meet the day.

I'd smoked my mind the night before With cigarettes and songs I'd been picking. But I lit my first and watched a small kid Playing with a can that he was kicking. Then I walked across the street And caught the Sunday smell of someone frying chicken. And Lord, it took me back to something that I'd lost Somewhere, somehow along the way.

On a Sunday morning sidewalk, I'm wishing, Lord, that I was stoned. 'Cause there's something in a Sunday That makes a body feel alone. And there's nothing short a' dying That's half as lonesome as the sound Of the sleeping city sidewalk And Sunday morning coming down.

In the park I saw a daddy With a laughing little girl that he was swinging. And I stopped beside a Sunday school And listened to the songs they were singing. Then I headed down the street, And somewhere far away a lonely bell was ringing, And it echoed through the canyon Like the disappearing dreams of yesterday.

On a Sunday morning sidewalk, I'm wishing, Lord, that I was stoned. 'Cause there's something in a Sunday That makes a body feel alone. And there's nothing short a' dying That's half as lonesome as the sound Of the sleeping city sidewalk And Sunday morning coming down.

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