REPORT A PROBLEM
Mercantile meanderings through firing synapses, I find myself at the precipice. I am soundly beaten again and discover my life's course has brought me here once more. The surroundings are similar but the setting is different. I see nothing in front of me, just a murky haze that mocks my very being. Behind me the ground has come undone; there is no path but forward. That is just like time to not give a person any options. I will rely on past observation and numerous testimonials to plot my course. One foot in front of every other, there I go!
Nothing like waiting around for people to show up within a pre-determined time frame. There are things I would rather do. Most of those require money to accomplish so I am better off sitting home alone.
Places I once thought lost have been found again. Things might move and in so doing lose the essence they once had. I will find out soon enough if that is the case.
Much must happen, but to do so things must change. They must change. Yet I fear in the end the status quo will win and we will all weep bitter tears.
We live in a world of our own design. There are certain events beyond our control that define our reality – our birth and upbringing, other's attitudes – but we can always rise above those circumstances to better ourselves. Most people choose to wallow in the degradation of their lives for which they blame others. After all, it is easier to blame others for one's own misfortune than it is to rise above it. Misery loves company and what better companionship than a blind fool. Life is a grand experience and every moment spent fretting about one's situation is a wasted opportunity.
The Way of the Warrior is clear, direct, and simple. Alas, I live a more complicated life, most of it my own choosing. Some habits are hard to break, while others are simple to slough off. The human condition demands much without providing much insight. Every superhero should come with instructions.
I am caught up in a wave of personal hysteria and I don't even know how to surf! In time, the juggernauts of our age will fall silent, but not without drawing much unneeded and obscene attention to themselves. The bomb is ticking and all the wires are yellow.
Riverfest 2004 is upon us. The end of summer is heralded in with explosions and the soothing sounds of rock & roll. The daylong affair brings an unofficial estimate of 500,000 people to the riverbanks for music, food, fireworks, and good times. Boats line the shore and clog the river to get a good view for the evening's festivities. It has been too long since I personally attended and this year was no exception. Fortunately the display is telecast, and while there is no substitute for the personal experience, I was still able to witness an incredibly choreographed fireworks spectacle.
Labor Day, a holiday created from a union parade, has grown into the unofficial end of summer for much of America. Family and friends get together, barbecue, and relax. By now most schools are back in session or soon will be. The new television season begins. The last hurrah of summer is over.
Let us not forget that Labor Day honors the working man. This day is set aside for us to celebrate the ingenuity, the blood and sweat that have made this nation great. Other days celebrate our military, religious observances, and certain individuals; let us also acknowledge ourselves.
Today, Alice has gone through the looking glass. The shackles of indecision and lethargy have been cast aside. The butterfly is tentatively leaving the cocoon, finding her wings to fly off to new and exciting times. I marvel at the brilliance of this new light and hope the beacon will guide others towards freedom. The girl I knew has become a woman. I do not think that I shall ever see her again. Hopefully, in time, I will get to know the woman, and maybe somewhere, somehow, I will recognize the girl from old. May the winds carry you safely.
It is truly astounding how little pride people take in their wares anymore. If the customer is willing to give up their hard-earned cash to purchase an item, the store at the very least should make sure the merchandise is undamaged. How many times must I refuse a delivery because no one bothered to check for damage or faulty construction? Where is the quality control? Where is the concern? Or is it just apathy as usual? Part of the problem lies in the fact that most people would rather not cause a scene so they let these problems unfold unchallenged.
MAKE IT STOP! There are 54 days until the election and all those campaign commercials are only going to multiply. Typically those ads get worse and sling more mud as we move closer to Election Day. Considering how mean-spirited many of the ads have been so far, I shudder to think of what the upcoming weeks have in store.
Making things worse, the public appearances by the candidates are not much better. Rather than tell people what the other person did or did not do, the candidates need to talk about what they will do to make people's lives better.
In an attempt to better myself and to determine my true calling, my perfect job as it were, I have turned to reading books on several subjects, including career placement, psychology, MBTI tests, and philosophy. At some point I lost sight of who I was and what I wanted. Now is the time for me to find that out.
Curiously enough, a dear friend of mine has done this very act. Opportunities that did not exist are now unfolding to her. In order to achieve the things you want you must take that first step and change your life somehow.
It has been three years since villainy reared its vicious head and committed a grave atrocity, resulting in the deaths of thousands. Some efforts have since been made to curtail such terrorism, but the politicians choose to speak in rhetoric, words that play well on the 6:00 o'clock news. The devastation we witnessed will not be rooted out in the manner that our leaders have deemed so successful. The terrorist of the day might be captured or even killed, but the underlying causes prevail. Until efforts are made to change the foundation, don't waste my time telling me we're winning.
It is interesting how certain music can trigger past events. After stopping by one of the numerous Oktoberfests in the area, I went to yet another festival, Chilifest 2004, where two bands of interest, the Spin Doctors and the Gin Blossoms, would be playing. In addition to it being a free concert, I could not justify not seeing two bands that were popular in my college days. In fact, their songs were played numerous times on my radio show. To hear those songs now, a decade later, was a truly magical experience. For three hours, the present became the past.
Time to pack up the past. Some items will be donated or turned in for cash. Others, especially those with no intrinsic value, will be dearly kept. It is amazing how easily these boxes can accumulate, so space is always at a premium. I am a self-admitted pack rat; much of what I keep I probably don't need, but I find it difficult to let go. I force myself to clean house, both physically and mentally. While I will always hold on to more than I will ever need, I prefer to retain these treasures than live a Spartan life.
It is amazingly difficult to find good help these days. No matter the venue, people just don't care anymore; they are not as attentive to the details as they once were. Those that care about the job, that wish to make an impression on the customer, always go above and beyond to make sure the task is satisfactorily done. At one point common courtesy was the bond between us all; there were appropriate ways of behaving. These days, people seem to be more interested in getting the job done quickly and then leave. So thank those that sincerely help you.
Once again I went through my father's old books. This is the fourth time I have sorted through them, each time creating a stack of books I wish to keep and another one that I will drop off at a used bookstore. Most of the books that I am getting rid of are old – typically 30+ years – and musty. Yet each time it feels like I am losing a bit more of my father. The books do not make the man, but considering how much time my father spent in his office this process of reduction takes on new meaning.
I try to bring myself to do something, anything, today, but once again I am bogged down in denial, apathy, and fear. I find it curious that someone with such a strong character can be so unusually timid. I should seek professional help, but I am not quite sure I wish to here the diagnosis. Besides, I know what the problem is. I just don't know the solution. A fifth of gin will only do so much to bury the pain. And my senses are numb enough as they are. I wish I could swear this is just a dream.
I finally turned in my father's books today. Six dollars for three boxes of books on architecture and urban planning. Had the condition been better on most of them, I am sure I could have gotten more. As it is, I had no more room for them and I can bring myself to just throw them out. Hopefully they will be put to good use by someone else. I now face the daunting task of sorting through my own books. I am sure I will keep most of the books, but it will be refreshing to see what I own.
The Oom-pah-pah of Oktoberfest is here. The second largest Oktoberfest in the world has come to town and I partook in the festivities – namely, eating bratwurst mit sauerkraut und drinking German beer, in my case, Spaten Optimator. The streets are packed by I lithely weave my way through the crowds to see what the night has in store. After a few hours of Gemütlichkeit, I head for home, only to realize that going to a bar is in order. Recently I have found myself staying at home quite a bit, but every once in awhile my body craves the nightlife.
I knew there was a reason why I don't consume mass quantities of alcohol anymore, especially considering what I ate the night before. While I did not suffer the full effects of a hangover, I was nonetheless exhausted from a miserable night's sleep. In fact, I rarely get hangovers. If anything, I usually don't sleep well and wake up tired. The longer I sleep, the better I feel. Of course, the older I get the worse off I will be from my late-night benders. The youth think they are the only ones entitled to party. Time to prove them wrong.
What we have here is a failure to communicate. That sounds right. We are all responsible for this catastrophic failing, but there is no other solution. The system is inherently flawed and the designers left long ago, leaving it up to us to figure it all out. Without a Rosetta stone, the task is pointless. Cryptology will only get you so far. The rest is just dumb luck, and that is never reliable. The fuse is lit and we are running out of time. There might still be a chance that we get it right. Just not in our lifetime.
I find myself pondering the future, only to discover more questions than answers. In the cosmic scheme I suppose there is some logic to this, but every so often it would be nice to get a response that makes sense. I suppose I should just be happy that I get a reply.
Behold, the frailty of human existence! We are all paupers seeking truth. The truly fortunate find a path to enlightenment. Yet most people do not realize the path is within themselves. If only they were brave enough to face their own demons then they would discover untold riches.
Curiously enough, I find myself missing a certain friend. After months upon months of almost daily contact, the sudden discontinuation has left me pondering where things truly stand between us. I would most likely not be thinking too much about this had she not called me to talk for a bit. Although I like to play otherwise, I am not so omniscient as to know where certain paths will lead, whether they diverge for good or at some point cross again. Until such time that the future is known, I will enjoy the company of friendship as I walk along.
Life never seems to move fast enough when you want it to, yet somehow it always manages to fly by, especially those times when you wish you could slow it down a notch or two. As I look back on my life, I find my past is littered with way too many missed opportunities, too many lost chances. I can only hope that as I tread forward, I am better able to see what is in front of me and truly take advantage of it. I will free myself from the life support and stumble towards who I should be.
I thought I would stay in tonight but a late call prompted me to go forth and partake in whatever festivities I may find. Needless to say, I was not disappointed. Good friends, some nice jazz, cool refreshing beverages, and attractive women were the flavors of the evening. To make it all better, I was within walking distance of home.
Certain people have called me a player, but I do not like that term. Whenever I go out, it is always my intent to have a good time. I don't know whether that will always happen. I do my best.
I have always enjoyed cartoons. When I was really young, I could watch Scooby Doo and Tom & Jerry all the time. As I got older, there was Starblazers, G.I. Joe, and He-Man. My college years found me watching the Animaniacs, which I consider to be one of the best cartoon series I've ever seen, certain skits excluded. Even today, I still enjoy watching cartoons. Not as many as in my youth, of course, but I still find myself drawn to some of the storylines and serial character development. Who knows, maybe when I'm sixty I'll still watch the ‘toons.
Evil does sometimes roam the earth. I was reminded of this when a tearful friend told me of tragedy that struck a child. There should never be a time or justification to harm a child. Those that do are cold and evil. We can never protect a child as much as we would like to; to do so would mean stunting the child's growth. Our only hope is that our children put to good use what we teach them.
What makes this situation worse is that the offender was another child, just a couple of years older than the victim.
There is nothing worse than having lived through a day, only to realize that I do not recall anything significant from that day. Well, there are worse things, but that defeats the purpose of what I am talking about.
Come to think of it, I did get my act together, somewhat anyway, and posted my resume on three job sites. I should post more; all in due time. My primary focus from now on will be to seek gainful employment. Gainful optional. If only there were easier ways to do what one wants without dealing with the hassles of money.
Today I succeeded in resolving a logistical problem. I had about eighteen boxes that I needed to get into a small storage area. Even I was surprised that I got them all in – with room to spare for another three or four boxes. All those years of solving puzzles came in handy.
Now for my next logistical problem – figuring out how to maximize the space in the two overhead storage areas. Maybe I can even clear out one of the garages and get everything into the storage areas. Now that would be a challenge. I am up for the challenge.
Hump Day is upon me and it is time to put aside potential job prospects and odd jobs around the house. I need a day for me. If nothing else, I will get some errands done that have been postponed. Not quite how I want to spend my days, but we all make sacrifices. And too many compromises.
Dinner out was interesting. Nothing like having a good meal from a fine restaurant. I could use varied dinner companions, but seeing how I am not getting the bill that is just one more compromise I make.
I bend like the willow.
The end of yet another month is upon us. The days blur faster and faster, my time grows increasingly short. If only I had an eon or two to comprehend these events, I might find some semblance of order or recognition. Then again, at that point days are seconds so would I really want to understand the intricacies of a water drop.
Such significance, while brilliant, does not impact my life in the slightest. Interesting and trivial, just inconsequential. But without dreams would life be meaningful? Or am I living my dreams? Just don't get me started about that rowboat….
The Tip Jar