Weatherman says it is 12 degrees outside but suggests it feels like -4 which motivated me to put a 1.5 miles on the treadmill and then I got irritated by the few and the proud who suggested this LA boy can’t handle snow.
Put on my Timberland boots, a jacket and walked out into the Winter Wonderland listening to Bruce sing Tunnel of Love.
Thought about shoveling the driveway but figured there is no point when more snow is falling, even if it is not at a rate that impresses others.
Midway through my two mile walk a neighbor suggested I ought to be careful because a man my age might not handle the weather as well as I would have at a younger age.
“I am not worried about dropping dead and if I do, oh well. It will be quick and I won’t know it. What troubles me more is taking a fall because that might hurt and leave lingering damage.”
They said that is an interesting way of looking at things and I shrugged my shoulders and kept going ‘cuz I am feeling feisty and it leads to people saying you like fighting with me and then complaining about it.
Came home, wrote another letter than may or may not be read and played around with whether I ought to shower now or later.
Later won and so you get this flaccid account of the not quite frigid but not particular warm pagan holiday experience.
Been reading and thinking about this, that and the other thing and came to the conclusion that Chuck is correct. Were he not dead I would write him a letter and let him know.
But he is and it is most certainly the worst of times to try to communicate with him but I do wonder if under the best of times he would have replied.
Makes me think I could ask that old man Mr. Clemens but the dude is dead too so that isn’t happening. They are part of long list of dead people who have found it easier to die and stay dead than communicate with me.
Granted I am not always easy to deal with and have been known to drive people beyond exasperation and exhaustion.
Hell, when I have offered the old love me or leave me line most have left. One even accused me of not recognizing my own defect in character.
I asked if that meant there would be no more carnal knowledge and was met by flying objects. I might add that it was probably not wise to say “you throw like a girl” and then offer to teach them proper form no matter how blithely done.
Tomorrow I am going to provide a book report with the book club in which I ask why we chose a book that doesn’t cover new ground, provide insight or opportunity for understanding.
My chapter ought to be called “12 pages of information you have read before but you bought the book anyway.”
Self improvement isn’t of particular interest to me because I have never seen one whose essence isn’t “be more disciplined in what you do and you might do it better.”
It doesn’t account for genetic advantages or those conferred through luck of birth.
But given the marketplace for such books I sometimes think about writing 10 or 12 of my own in which I rewrite the words of those who came before me, smile broadly and assure the readers that this book can change their life.
Hell, I can sell that one in sixteen different ways with my eye closed and my brain fuzzy with the haze of recent slumber.
“One kiss changed everything and you know your life will never be the same since you made that first move. You said I love you and I need you forever and then life was turned upside down and inside out.
Buy this book and learn how to submit to destiny and dominate your future or something like that.
Listening to Dark Necessities and thinking about the LA I know and remember.
Keep hearing it is not what it was and ask people to tell me about things that don’t change.
“Josh, every vendor you used for your wedding is gone. The bagel shop we hung out isn’t around and the city isn’t anything like it was. California is so different.”
Shake my head, even though they can’t see it and ask them again to tell me what doesn’t change.
“El Capitan, the Yosemite Valley, Malibu and Zuma are mostly the same. That spot of the highway in Big Sur fell into the sea but those aren’t run by people.
The restaurants and businesses you mention changed because people change. We decide to retire, we get sick and have to change our lives or maybe we die. We lose our passions and develop new interests.
Of course there are changes. Hell, my beard suddenly isn’t as full as it once was on the sides. Is that stress, lack of testosterone or just old age.”
“Are you worried about any of those things?”
“Sort of, but not especially. The beard thing is irritating but it might not be anything. Not going to take any pills for the hair that doesn’t grow on my head anymore.
Not going to do much of anything about most of it because it is not important. It is not my focus and though I don’t like change I am very good at managing it. Do you remember how many times I have moved.”
We go back and forth some more and they ask me what I would do and I tell them what I would say.
“Share my life or don’t. Share your life or don’t. People who want to be a part of it will make arrangements or they’ll move along.
There is a pause and they ask where this came from.
“Might have always been there, not sure. But I have thought about the impact of experiences and the words I remember hearing from friends and relatives who knew they were dying.
I still hear their voices but my understanding of what they said is different now. We only get one chance to do this, might as well try to do it right, whatever that means.”