His focus is off and the sharp edges are muted enough for me to wonder what is going on inside.
“Are you having trouble thinking?”
A short pause that is just long enough to seem too long precedes the “yeah, I am” in response.
“Ok, get some more rest and we’ll speak later.”
Since I am on the far side of town and heading back during a rush hour that everyone in LA would love to have I have ample time to think.
I don’t feel like listening to Howard or anything else on satellite so I stream one of the mixes on my phone and let the music direct my thought.
That song above wouldn’t have been my first choice but it always catches me so I let it play and think about broken people.
A Philosophical Time
No one wants to deal with some of the current challenges and who can blame them.
The people you saw as being pretty damn close to invincible and invulnerable are showing that no one is and so our own mortality is reflected back upon us.
Two three quarter ton pick ups fly by me at speeds that suggest that not all of us see or feel that reflection and I wonder what made me think of broken people.
So I begin pulling and parsing inside my head in an attempt to figure out what song I am thinking about because it has to be the music.
Eventually I stumble upon it and let it play inside my mind thinking that the line I am searching for will reveal itself.
It doesn’t take long for me to realize the line I am thinking of isn’t even close and I wonder why I would juxtapose ragged with broken.
Since it doesn’t really matter I just let it go and the internal jukebox moves closer to the end and I realize that is where my focus really is.
In the clearing stands a boxer
And a fighter by his trade
And he carries the reminders
Of ev’ry glove that laid him down
Or cut him till he cried out
In his anger and his shame
“I am leaving, I am leaving”
But the fighter still remains, mmm mmm
What Comes Next
One of the blogs is broken and I am having trouble fixing it. I want to go to the gym and do some other things but I can’t stop tinkering with it.
This is a trait I know I picked up from my father and I see it has been passed down to my son.
Once we are engaged in certain projects we are driven to figure out solutions to them, never truly resting until we are convinced we have tried all angles and done all we are capable of doing.
Experience has taught me to take a step away to clear my head and see if that doesn’t provide new perspective.
Back in the car the music moves to another song and this one makes me shake my head and wonder how we have come to a place in which stupidity and xenophobia are seen by many as being virtues to be praised.
I think about numerous conversations with people who are stupid and or willfully blind.
They tell me stories about what is going on in the state and city I lived in for more than 40 years assuring me they absolutely know more than I do.
When I ask them to provide fact to support some of their specious allegations they tell me my feelings don’t trump their rights.
Sometimes I think about what would happen if I punched them in the mouth. Could I tell them that their feelings didn’t trump my right to protect myself from stupid people.
One of them engages me on guns and tells me I must really be dumb because LA is filled with dangerous immigrants.
“Let’s pretend you’re using facts and I’ll share a few things with you. I have been evacuated from a forest fire, survived the LA Riots and an earthquake that devastated large parts of my city.
Never once did my not having a tank, air force or M-16 cause any harm to be done to me.
Have you ever been in anything like any of those?”
The answer is no and I tell him to listen carefully,”I don’t care if you own a Glock, seven shotguns and the Derringer aunt Milly hid in her bra. That provides ample security and helps minimize the exposure of people to some other firearms.”
He comes back with the tired lie that criminals don’t follow the law and there is nothing we can do.
This time I lose my patience and accidentally say”You’re too fucking stupid” to understand what I am talking about.
He asks if he “triggered me” and I take three steps towards him.
“Now I know why you want a gun. Try not to shoot yourself in the nuts or let someone take it and slap some sense into you.”
I turn and walk away ignoring the train of insults flowing my way. I am too old to get involved with this idiot
It doesn’t reassure me to know he votes or that some woman was dumb enough to help him procreate.
For a long while I couldn’t stand to listen to this song because it was over played but at the moment it makes way too much sense.
I don’t know where the broken people hide or how to determine who is really broken and who is just kind of and I don’t know that it matters.
All we can do is teach our children and try to make smart choices that aren’t driven by fear, anger or desperation.
And now the call of the gym has become too loud to ignore.