One Or The Other
Well, it's Friday, home from work. I've watched the news and now I'm sitting here with my shot of whiskey and water. The last of two really good bottles of whiskey that I bought to celebrate the holidays died last night, RIP. There was a time when they wouldn't have lasted an evening, but that's an old story, a story I repeat to friends who go blind eyed with "heard that story before" boredom. So back to the pretty good stuff with the Turkey on the label I keep up in the cupboard next to the olive oil, the pretty good virgin, but not all that virgin, olive oil. That's gone rancid.
Saturday morning. The sun is shining. It is warm. This is California. This is why we came here. This and the sex and the songs and the drugs and the money. I am feeling sleepy. I've got my new tea pot filled with special Chinese something or other tea back behind me on the kitchen drain board and a cup here beside me on my computer table. I am thinking of going outside with camera, but I am also thinking of taking a nap. Public radio is playing at the moment, but I've also been listening to the Grateful Dead's Mars Hotel and I'm kinda humming along with Loose Lucy, the last cut on the first side. I knew Lucy in the old days when I was playing at being in the music business with Karin. Good days. Lucy was OK. The sort of woman a famous band might write a song about.
It is now February with my birthday just one month away. I mentioned some time back that I'd half decided to lose a certain amount of weight before I reached my fifty-ninth birthday and, although I'm not really on schedule, I'm reasonably close. What does this mean in the cosmic string of things? Not sure. Everything I've talked about, everything I've thought about, everything I've done is still that, still there, still part of my existence. I'm lighter, I'm getting a little better at judging my exposures when I'm shooting black and white photographs, I still write, albeit sporadically, none of my personal relationships have changed all that much, the one woman I'd like to know better still has other plans, and all of this is as it should be. Now what?
I had lunch yesterday with a friend who retired from the company last year and we covered some of this same territory. (I think "wadda I do now?" and "aches and pains" are the mind numbing topics of your fifties. I don't even want to think about being sixty.) I've spun lots of little stories about what I'd like to do in the next chapter, if there is a next chapter, but none of them have replied with any passion. I'm comfortable, I'm numb, I'm sitting here writing and thinking of taking a nap. This is not bad, but there is always the whisper this may be dumb and happy me heading for a fall.
So this is the point you look inward and suck it up, "what the hell, this is what is, make it work." You've got it better than about 99% of the people in existence, you're alive, you're healthy, you've got friends, you've got toys, you've got a journal and you get up every morning looking forward, if not to the day, then, at least, to breakfast.
This work I do for a living is still fairly interesting. Let that be OK. No need to marry it. No need to let it consume my every hour, but give it its due, do it well and get on with living. Shooting pictures. I talk about that. I play at that. I'm not as obsessive as it sounds here in the journal. People know me for carrying a camera and shooting photographs and if they ask me to stop, I stop. There are people I know well who don't appear in the journal because they've asked me to not shoot their photographs. I don't talk about it very much. I mean, what do you say? f stops. Who talks about f stops? I talk about it here, but this place is my place for something else.
I'm not complaining. (Really, I'm not.) I'm not feeling blue, I'm just turning things over (over and over and over), a monkey examining a coconut, one coconut in a pile of coconuts left over from the big monkey dinner, examining life's great monkey question. Life is good, life is interesting, life is not getting me all that excited, true, but life is good, and good is good, because life does not last forever.
Where is this going? Where is the journal going? Where is the job going? Where am I going? Well, I'm going to go to bed and take a nap or I'm going to put on my jacket, pick up a camera and go out into the city, one or the other.