July 21, 2020

Are we going to have a fabulous day today, or what? I jumped out of bed after an hour of listening to the radio, then overwatered the Sahara dry plant, got a towel, cleaned up the mess, put on my clothes to take out the garbage… and… I was too late. The truck had come and gone. Darrrrnnnnit! Wrong side of the damn bed again! All of that was the icing on the day previous, a ‘falling off’ day. The wagon’s wheels went soft and I fell off. None of the projects I had carefully lined up marched anywhere but to the couch. The TV overheated as the refrigerator emptied itself onto the bathroom scale and I refuse to look. OMG! This cannot keep happening!

I recognize the pattern I am ravelling now. This has happened before. All of my threads are making complexity come to life. There are too many things to think about at one time and nowhere to go first so I sit here, frozen in front of the mirror. My self is reflecting back to me. The mirror is not kind, not a supplicant like the evil Queen’s mirror, nor the sort of mirror that just gives up one day and tells the truth. The mirror in my hand always tells the truth. The truth about what a con man human being I am, what an unmotivated fool. But is that really so? Am I really more a conniver than any other soul? Do I really do less meaningful work? What is the truth? There could be other sides to this story. The old Libra scale has it’s balance intact yet and there are tomorrows to live through.

I am surrounded by half completed projects or I am surrounded by works in progress. I am old and fat and sloppy or I am healthy, with all of my medical test results in the very positive range. I am poor and scrambling to survive or I have plenty enough to live and a few luxuries to enjoy. No one wants to fall in love with me or I am too busy restarting my life and unable to commit anyway. The marriage and life I had has evaporated or I am on my way as an author, musician and poet, surrounded by new friends. The lovely woman I grew to deeply care for, whose company I enjoyed, has gone or I helped make her last years pleasant and cheerful. The parents I never felt close to have died or I am orphaned and alone at 70. Interesting.

Every day, the same quandary. Inertia of living tells me that a person probably should get out of bed, eventually. There are two sides of the bed to choose between. There is a wrong side and a right side exit to the same little warm, safe place. I wonder. When you do roll out, is it choice or chance that determines which exit you take? In my mind of superstitious nature, I take chance to be the work of God and choice to be the work of me, of you. It is chance that powers the day and choice turns it the right way. Chance blows in with a dark cloud or two and a bit of rain. Choice closes the window so I don’t get wet. Chance overflows the clay pot and spills onto the good wood table what choice brought too much of from the kitchen sink. Chance turns your head at a crucial moment and choice keeps you from shouting out when the door frame cracks your skull.

This, friends is how I see God: as chance. as chaos. as opportunity offered. It isn’t really a plan. There is no grand design. There is no right or wrong or good or bad — it is all good — it is all right — IT, is perfect. Chance spins the day as if it were a roulette wheel. Wherever the ball stops is the right place. That is God. God is what affords us opportunity to see, to do, to gain, to turn the story around. We win, we lose, we try, we fail. God didn’t plan any of that. He isn’t punishing us. He doesn’t reward. He or, more accurately, It offers us opportunity. On any one of those given days where a series of upside down events occurs, I am forced to stop. I am forced to pause and take a breath. I am led to reflect. That’s what God offers us, a moment of choice, an opportunity to change our view, a thing to reflect on. If we choose badly, that’s our result. If we choose well, that’s our result. Any glass is half a glass and the direction is what choice sees. Full? Empty?

Who picks the side of the bed you rise from? Haha. Like most people, I get up on the same side every day. It’s habit. ‘Getting up on the wrong side of the bed’ is a way to describe whether a day is going in a positive or negative direction but I actually always get up on the same side. I get up on the right side of the bed. All of us do, we get up on our own right side of the bed. Even in China, all that way toward the opposite end of earth from me, they get up on the right side of the bed. In Australia, the drain whirlpool flows in the opposite direction but the folks get up on the right side of the bed. You can’t get out of a bed any way except from the right side. How the day goes, is how the day goes. It’s our choice to laugh or to curse. Up to us. It isn’t more serious than that. God offers the day, the life-force, the chance encounter, the flow, the spin. It’s my choice to see how perfect it is and be content or my choice to grieve. Either way, “The main thing is: to not get too ex-cited.”

March 10, 2020

Worry

Rip Van Plumber’s Crack (Winkle) was out today.  That is a certain sign of spring. He wears very little clothing so cannot long endure the cold weather.  I don’t know where he goes during the dark months.  Maybe he has a little house somewhere, similar to the little house I built for Msr. P. Catt.  Rip is a man of about 70 years, long grey beard, long hair, very thin body.  He walks leaning forward and very gingerly, as though his feet were hurting.  Of course, he wears a sort of slipper that reminds of a ballet slipper. That might be why he walks so gingerly.  The tight shorts may be a contributing factor.  I know, as a male, that shorts so tight affect the external bits in negative ways.  They would certainly cause me to walk gingerly. Spandex bicycle shorts are his favourite.  He seems to like black ones.  Today’s pair were ultra tight and not the right size, revealing a fine butt crack and clear skinned cheeks.  The finishing touch was a white, skin tight, midrift revealing t-shirt and a Tim Horton’s cup in hand.  Wonder where he is going? Perhaps an important meeting with his lawyer?

I wonder some times where I am going.  Don’t you?  Are we just slogging carefully down the street, leaning forward in anticipation of our next move?  Are we tightly gripping a five year plan?  Are we adrift?  Well, adrift has other connotations than negative ones.  Adrift can mean free, as well as rudderless – out of control.  I used the word adrift in a poem and I meant free when I said it.  I have felt adrift as rudderless and I felt adrift as free.  I am free, today. I have just returned from a nice vacation spent with good friends.  It was lovely and a changing sort of experience.   I was  forced to relax because I was several thousand miles away from me, my world.  There was no option but to sit on the beach and watch the sea. I slipped to another cog on the mandela?  Yeah, kinda. I told a friend this morning that I don’t feel time pressure today.  That is true.  I am just doing what I do in the time it takes to do it and not worrying about what is yet undone or needs attention in some way.  What a strange feeling, this relaxed thing.  Wonder how long it will last? It better not last too long because I have some serious worrying to do, don’t you?

Rip Van Plumber’s Crack does not seem to be worrying.  He is just walking to and fro, gingerly,  with damaged genitalia and not a care?  Who knows.  I think he might be worrying about the Tim Horton’s cup being less than half full or maybe he is worrying about the locusts coming this year.  He isn’t letting the worry affect his half-naked travels though.  I won’t let the worry affect my half-baked writing,  I am determined.  Ha.  Don’t you let it affect you, either.  Donald Trump will die someday…just like the rest of us.  He doesn’t worry, so why should we.

March 6, 2020

Changes

I dropped by the bulk food store to get some supplies for baking.  I have cut back on spending and needed bread supplies, bread being much cheaper to make yourself than to buy.  I can do about four loaves for the price of one.  A deal.  Against the wishes of Shell oil and others, I  have cut back on the use of plastic bags and paper, too.  That is my gift to the future, since the world is nearly afloat on plastic and other rubbish.  We can’t go on, no matter what the creepy people in government and business tell us.  The poor little creatures are stretched out half dead on the beach, trying to breathe.  Without them, what would we do?  Eat money?  The bushes and trees and other green things are gasping as well.

Save, save, save is the mantra and I chant it every day, now.  Save the earth, save time running around, save money. Funny, the money saving is more so that I can burn up fossil fuel carrying my carcass down south again next year.  I am altruistic to a point, at which I am not selfless anymore.  I want to fly to Mexico, I can fly to Mexico, so I will.  I am complicated.  We are complicated, all of us.   We want to save and we want to do the right thing but I am not certain we can save ourselves.  Saving ourselves will take a lot of changing around and we are busy living.

There is a guy here at the office who is really not saving.  He is using up his voice by talking very loudly about personal business things.  He is not saving the important stuff for a later, private time.  He will end up like Harry Belafonte or Julie Andrews and not be able to sing someday. He is using electricity and magnetic waves along with high level sound waves to do nothing important.  I am using electricity as well.  His work is transient and so is mine.  It means nothing and costs our island home an awful lot.  I can change myself and do the right thing if I try super hard.  I can do it if I choose.  The thing I cannot do, is to tell someone else to save, to make them save.  I can’t tell that guy to shut up and turn off his devices.  That won’t work.  Choosing the right thing for someone else is not an option.  Even in religion.  Most specifically, in religion. In fact, religion proves my point.  The right wing sects, factions, divisions all try hard to MAKE people do what THE GOOD BOOKS say.
Does that help?  No.  People just do what they can do and want to do.  They might feel a twinge of guilty but they do what they choose to do.  We have inertia.  We have the way things are done working against us and we have to choose.  Will we?  Will we choose for ourselves the better way? 

Maybe, maybe not.  I am not hopeful when I see egregious behaviour that is, or was at one time, acceptable in society, in the world.  Pete Seeger said something about being hopeful for the world but  doubtful at the same time.  Sigh.  He was a smart, strong, righteous person.  I respect him always.  He probably had a Wendy’s hamburger once or twice. He drove a car, used a gas powered chain saw and flew to the gigs.  I forgive him.  I forgive Greta for flying about the world, crying out loud and pointing fingers.  Somebody needs to remind us.    We are complicated but forgiven and we should try.  Try for your own sake…do your best.

It is possible that we are locked into being human and foolish.  Maybe, as all the great human societies have done, we are facing our extinction.   Maybe we are predestined to that. Who knows?  I drove to the office, had a bagel and tea because I wanted it today.  Uhoh.

Jesus, my bad!

March 4, 2020

Bad people. 
On my route back and forth, in and out, I saw two police vans pull up to a house. It was 7 o’clock in the morning.  Two women stood outside the house, pointing toward an open door.  Curious situation, eh?  I imagined all sorts of things and it got me thinking about people.  Bad people.  People who don’t ‘people’ very well.  They are sometimes broken and oftentimes can’t be fixed.  Maybe they were poorly made, of low quality.  Maybe the materials of their lives have all been substandard or flawed in some way, like cheap stuff from China.   Then, one morning at 7, they just break.  Maybe they were getting ready for work and while they were doing that, reached a point where the plastic gave way, the handle fell off and someone got burned. Maybe that was one 7 o’clock too many and the phony expiration date was revealed, they were spoiled.  Someone suddenly realized they didn’t taste good,  looked at the label and called the police.  Or, maybe they had been minding their own business, sitting in the bin, another person went bad and they went bad too, right along with them. In the course of breaking or spoiling or going bad, the police get called, someone gets hurt and a crowd gathers to watch the spectacle.

Sometimes, a crowd doesn’t gather. The crowd doesn’t gather because only a simple thing happened.  A dish broke, there was yelling.  It might have been not very bad. People don’t gather to see that since it happens all the time. As an example,  I didn’t know what had happened so I just drove by the open door, the women, the police and continued doing what I was doing.  Other people, bad or not, were also driving by and carefully avoiding the gaze of the attendant police.  I and they continued what we were doing but suddenly at the posted speed limit and in the proper lane,  using turn signals.  I used my signals. Usually, I don’t.  That is a bad thing I do.  I go bad from time to time and the turn signal using urge shorts out. I wasn’t properly put together and I get reminded by anyone riding in the front seat when I drive.  It is only a moderately bad thing I do.  Someday, of course, maybe at 7 o’clock in the morning, the turn signal won’t be used and there will be an accident or someone will get upset. The police will be called and people will point.

It is not considered nice to gawk at a person who broke or went bad or spoiled.  We are not supposed to be curious but I was curious.  I think the reason it is not considered nice to stare is simple.  We are all bad, a little.  We know that one 7 o’clock in the morning, there will be an open door and people pointing and a couple of police cars.  It will be something we did bad, we will look like a bad person.  We don’t want to look bad.  I don’t think anyone wants to be bad, either.  We all want to be good, stay fresh, hold together.  All of us do.  Maybe Donald Trump wants to be bad, I don’t know.  The curiousity about the open door and the pointing is simple, too.  I think we want to know that the other apple went badder than we did.  Then, we can rest a little easier?  Our curiousity is self-serving?
I am a little curious just what happened beyond that open door.  What were those women with the worried looks on their faces pointing at?
 
Maybe some bad people just like doing that bad stuff.  Maybe they were born to be bad, as many a printed t-shirt claims of  it’s wearer.  Are they ‘bad to the bone’ and proud of it?  It seems that Donald Trump likes to be ‘bad to the bone’, doesn’t it?  Myself, I don’t necessarily like being bad…it is just an occasional part of going down the road.  Sometimes, I just forget to use my signal.  Sometimes, I just get lazy.  Don’t call the police, eh? (and don’t point, it isn’t nice.) 

March 3, 2020

It is closing in on my brother’s 66th birthday.  He is the baby of the family, last one out.  My mother and other siblings remain irascible as ever but my dad is gone. I think we are a little unusual in that we have made it this far without losing more than one of our number.  Friends from school days and rousting about days are missing.  Missing in many ways, some have parts missing, some have teeth missing, hair missing.  Some are just photographs, now.  My cousins have started dropping by the wayside and their parents, my aunts and uncles,  are rapidly disappearing.  Time grows short and not long.  We have been traveling a while and I can see the end of the road.  It isn’t much further. 

Who knows what comes next along the road as time stretches. I wonder and hope that there will be rest?  Maybe not.  Maybe we will suffer the pains of hell that have been predicted for us by those who have ‘a connection’ to the other side or to the beyond. Who can say.  None have returned from the edge or from any length of time at the edge so it is anybody’s guess.  Perhaps ‘God’ spoke to some of our fellows a long time ago and had them write some stuff down. He didn’t want it to be forgotten, I am sure.  What bothers me about God now, is that he only seems to speak to crazy people.  Franklin Graham?  Jerry Falwell? Ayatollah Rumeni? (and that hunched over guy who is so mean…can’t think of his name)

With time running out on us, I worry that God has forgotten what he told all those other folks, long ago, to write down.  Maybe, as my friend in Israel says, he changed his mind?  Maybe he doesn’t want us to be friends with each other and leave each other alone anymore?  He wants us to kill and steal and covet our neighbours wife?  That is what Donald Trump does and Franklin Graham loves Donald.   Benjamin Netanyahu steals money from the folks.  Ayatollah Rumeni makes the folks  pray before he kills them by hanging or stoning them. Jerry Falwell wants the homosexuals put in jail or killed.  okay, God…what gives?  Is it okay now to do these things?  Folks are telling us you told them it was the right thing to do.

Anyway, happy approaching birthday to my baby brother and I sure hope we keep living for a long time so that we don’t have to go to hell anytime soon.

March 2, 2020

Must every day be a new beginning?  I guess and suppose that is why earth is round, the sun is round. I think the trick is to leave a little of the broken up space dust behind and let it collect into some sort of alien planet, a rock dragging somewhere far behind you. Take what you need and leave the rest…put it in the bin, on the cart.

I have decided?  to let things be and just keep a-goin. My past life, the married part will have to sit unresolved.  We cannot talk, there is nothing but anger, resentment.  Not useful.  His life is now his, mine, mine.  No resolution, only memories.  There were good memories as well as bad.  The end result is a draw.  We fired our weapons at stars and neither one of us hit anything.  Holster the whole thing and move on like two space cowboys, dragging their carts.

There are in life, things that cannot be resolved.  Grief is one.  It is a stone to carry and you just have to carry it.  Maybe put that stone in the cart and drag it along with you.  At least that will leave your hands free to continue living. You still will always have the stones in the cart.  Dragging the cart seems easier, you get kind of used to it, your muscles build up a little and on you go.  It doesn’t get easier, really…each new stone becomes part of the load.  By the end of our time, we make look all beat up and worried down to nothing but we are incredibly strong then.  Death becomes nothing, a walk in the park?

hahahahahahaah— Wonder what’s for dinner?

February 29, 2020

It is leap year, so I will leap. That’s what you do, I hear. I have been trying to leap into a new life on my own. I am almost certain that I have done, maybe a little. I had to turn my back on the past thirty years. It is over, people are dead and gone. The money is spent and on we must go because time remains yet. For a while I sat thinking about things I never imagined thinking about. “Just suppose”, I thought. “Suppose I moved to Mexico and spent the rest of my life there?” Is that a possibility? Why would I ever want to do that? Why would I not want to do that? What other apparently crazy things are there to do yet? Is it possible to move to England? I know I could move to California or Florida or Newfoundland or Alaska or Nova Scotia. Where should I leap to? Should I leap further? Is Leamington the end of leaping? How about a half-leap?

I am not a person who does well in the heat but I am increasingly tired of snow, cold weather. Perhaps I could find some way of spending at least a little of winter elsewhere. That would be a half leap that would make life more interesting. I could half-leap to affordable Nova Scotia for summer, then someplace warmer in winter. California, Florida are a bit expensive for me to bear. Not a realistic possibility to go there on my own and pay the whole fee. Mexico is cheaper, for certain but it sure was hot. To keep it low cost, I would have to walk most places I went. Walking is Ok. Walking is a thing I have always enjoyed but in Puerto Vallarta, it was a challenge. Whew! I was gasping for air and sweating my way up and down the hills of Puerto Vallarta for a couple of recent weeks. If I had prepared better, it might have been less exhausting. Walking in the heat this time was a definite downside. The upside is that sitting on the verandah, the terrace, the balcony, allowed those constant Pacific ocean breezes to lift the sun off my shoulders and dry my sweat. I suppose I could do that? Would that be the right thing to do?

I am not at all convinced that the heat and humidity on a February day are righteous things for a winter-climate-born boy to enjoy. It is just wrong, somehow. Winter is a fact of life. The cold and snow come every year, it is the way of things. The earth turns, tips toward and away from the sun. That is what is. This is righteous. Endure and enjoy are living. To fly someplace more convenient during the inconvenient times seems like a sort of ‘chickening out’. Going off and spending earth’s resources as well as my own on something like warm days and restful nights…unfair. Just because I can, should I?