I was thinking this morning while chomping on my Mini Shredded Wheats of what I wanted to do with this blog/journal/obsessive navel gazing, and where I wanted to go with it. It always reverts to the same banality. But then, maybe I just don’t really want to be deep at this stage of life. Chronicling the mundane appears to be my forte.
And truthfully, the days do seem to slip by me unnoticed. Perhaps that is why I try to capture vignettes of the passing landscape. My life seems to be hurrying to a destination and has grown weary of the traveling. My mind, however, wants to enjoy the trip and isn’t so crazy about the destination. Not that I fear it, if it arrives while my mind is clear.
I am close to swearing off politics again. Even God seems to reach a point where he just lets people do what they are going to do. While I daily encourage God to keep a hand in things, he has grown silent. God often uses the similarity of a father when illustrating his nature, and I do remember what life was like when he grew silent. It is not a good sign. Unhappy things are soon to follow
Bruce and Amber have taken on some of the responsibility for the upkeep of the house and yard. He has been running over the tall grass with The Beast, my aging Sears mower. He seems to be ok with it, and it doesn’t require a lot of physical strength to run it but does take a bit of stamina because it has no springs, and the yard is so big.
Two of my sisters are visiting next month, and some friends from Ohio will be spending some time with us as well. It is good to touch bases with family from time to time. Snooks has started preparing the house.
The eyes are progressing nicely, and the follow up is this week. It is good to see again. I need to get Blue Bucephalus, my aging Dodge mommy van, up and running again. I am looking forward to driving, but I think I will move back into it with measured caution. I am writing now without glasses, though things are a bit sharper with them I can see whole sentences at one glance. I haven’t started reading yet, but that is on the agenda.
So the ending of July is near, and August brings its promise. As I approach my daily goal of 500 words or so, I catch myself wanting to write a more detailed post, but the journal law proscribes the length. Mercifully for you!
Day two of the write everyday challenge
A near normal Texas summer day pushes in through my studio window this morning. To have everything so lush and green this late into the summer is very unusual.
Amber cut the life out of the poison ivy bush along the wall and left it to wither yesterday. Got to figure out a way to grab on to it and drag it out to the brush pile. Then apply copious amounts of plant poison along the foundation to kill it at the roots. I probably will let my eyes heal a bit more before starting on that.
And nothing but insanity on the newsfeeds. Former Senator Barbara “Call me Senator, General” Boxer was mugged for her cellphone in one of the few trendy parts of Oakland. A woke gymnast fails to deliver at the Olympics in Tokyo. A cop car is torched in Louisville, Colorado, and the House of Representatives is theater and theatrics.
But here in my little piece of paradise on the vast pampas of Central Texas, things are a little saner. We had a very wet spring and early summer, and the place is lush with grass and shrubbery. It always amazes me when this place springs to life after a drought.
I may start driving around the neighborhood a little just to get my driving skills up. I haven’t driven in well over a year now. Maybe even two years at this point. Not that I have anywhere to go. But I do like the independence.
And so the sun rises. Time for a bite of breakfast.
Well, the eyes are fixed. The WordPress subscription has been renewed. I can see what I type now. I am out of excuses to not write each day.
I am a bit leery of picking up writing again, though. With me, it is a perishable skill. I have kept my hand in political commentary by writing quips and insults, but truthfully, they don’t engender deep thought processes, nor even intelligence for that matter.
So, I sit once again in front of the unblinking Cyclops and try to write a coherent stream of consciousness. The spell-checker is going crazy, and I don’t dare turn on the streaming grammar checker. Unfortunately, there is no such thing as a dyslexia checker. That would be useful for me as my brain cells shrink and wither with old age.
The news is full of big city violence horrors. The wisdom of the ‘wise’ has truly been confounded as new terror piles up on the old terror. Mayors and city fathers are quick to come up with useless fixes to the violence, but it gets worse with each passing day.
I would be fine with it, but the trouble is that big city folks are fleeing to the less crime ridden parts of the country and bringing their failed ideas and shrieking wokisms with them. They didn’t learn from the experience.
I can hardly wait until I can resume yard work again to shut out the noise. It will be mere days, now. I put the increasing birth pangs of wars, terrors and violence that is yet to come aside while puttering round in the yard. I look to one who is hidden within, and in whom I am hidden. There is no other hope for me.
So the daily Rota now includes writing a page on WordPress. It is a chore, but in some ways, a welcome one.
Friday rolls around again. If this coming evening wasn’t the beginning of Shabbat, I wouldn’t know what day it is. I observe the passage of time by Shabbats and doctor appointments. The rest of the time it is mere days, and each day rolls seamlessly into the next.
How time creeps along for youth! It was an æon between my 14th birthday and my 15 ½ when my state would let me have a learner’s permit. It was another æon from then to my 16th birthday when I could upgrade that license to a minor’s license. It was yet another æon until my 18th birthday when my license was an adult license, and I could drink 3.2% beer.
But now, seven decades, almost three quarters of a century later, the days go by like a car passing a picket fence. I want to yell “slow down!” to the fleeting of days. Each day is a day to be savored in my retirement. Each day is a day of rest.
I have read the book. I know what the increasing drumbeat of outraged voices in the world means. The time of peace is over, and the time of strife is beginning. And like every generation of youth from the beginning of time, the youth cannot see the storm clouds gather. It is all grand marching music and promise to them. They have no time to compare their lives with history. It is all new.
So, I sip my coffee, munch a couple of sugar cookies and watch the sun climb into the sky. Today brings sufficient evil into my life. I need not seek out more. And with that thought, I finish the cookies and turn my thoughts to preparing for the Shabbat.
Wednesday morning dawned a bit misty and humid, but by ten the mist was burned off by an intense Texas sun. I staggered down to the studio with the coffee mug and cookies, plopped down in the chair to go through the morning mail and news.
A lot of political posturing dominated the news, and I just scanned the headlines, not worrying over the details. Wokees outraged by this, Critical Racers outraged by that, and people in the middle outraged by the outrages.
I can’t hold on to outrage very long before life intrudes. Mowing my lawn is more important than what the Academic Marxists are teaching the kids this morning. Coffee sippin’ is more current that a leftist bad boy killed by a cop.
I am in outrage overload. Maybe today I’ll just pick up my own cross and carry it. I can’t carry all the others.
It has been a while since I have written much of anything, other than some snark on facebook and such. My vision is so bad these days that I am unable to see the words clearly, and whole sentences appear to have huge vacant gaps in them, making writing and proofing a major chore.
Driving is completely out of the question. A black car in the shade on black asphalt is invisible, and I cannot work on my tractor because it is painted black. It is all one big black blob. My brother was able to repair a broken idler pulley for me that was in plain sight for a someone that could see. Even when I do mow, it is very difficult to see where I have mowed previously.
I really became discouraged when I failed the pre-op exam for cataract surgery. I didn’t handle that so well. I was ready to just lay down and die. In fact, I sort of did start abetting the dying process. I just don’t want to sit around and wait for lunch for the rest of my life.
I told the doc I was done, and that would be my last visit … I wasn’t seeking out anymore medical attention. He then told me he thought I could get the surgery after the cardiologist was done with me, so I gave it one more try. After the usual things, EKG’s, stress tests, echocardiogram, imaging and such, the cardiologist said he wasn’t concerned about the surgery.
So … back to the ophthalmologist. Next up, measurements, another pre-op exam, covid test, left eye, covid test, right eye … and I am back to my old obnoxious self. I’ll be able to write long passages again, drive, tell Snookums how to drive, and see where I have mowed.
My spirits are up again …
“So how do you tell a story without telling the story?” I ask as I sit down to write.
A friend wrote today of family humor and an incident at a funeral that evoked guffaws. It got me to thinking about my own sense of humor that is warped. Gallows humor it is called. Mirth in the face of a tragic and hopeless situation.
It is always inappropriate, but there it is. I once remember a scene in a movie where a man goes into the confessional booth to confess his sin, then shoots the priest so there were no witnesses to his confession. I guffawed in the darkened theater over the irony of the scene and got a passel of disbelieving white eyeballs staring at me. That only made it worse, and my date at that time finally had to give me a hard elbow in the ribs. She never went to a movie with me again.
I have been hard on modern day comics and their substitution of snark for humor. In defense of my gallows humor, I do think snark generally springs from an unentitled sense of superiority, and shares that sense with their audience.
One of my favorite cites is:
Robert-François Damiens, a French man who attempted to assassinate king Louis XV, was sentenced on March 26, 1757 to be executed in a gruesome and painstakingly detailed manner. He would first be led to the gallows, holding a torch with 2 lbs. of burning wax. Pliers would then be used to tear his skin at the breast, arms and legs. Then his right arm, which held the knife he had used for his crime, would be burned with sulfur. The aforementioned areas with ripped skin would then be poured upon with molten lead, boiling oil, burning pitch, wax, and sulfur. His body would then be dismembered by four horses, the members and trunk consumed in fire, and the ashes would be spread in the wind. After hearing the sentence, Damiens is reported to have replied: “Well, it’s going to be a tough day.”
I have used that phrase often when faced with an impossible set of circumstances and must ride it out to the end.
So with those thoughts, Shabbat morning unfolds. I feel like I am on a runaway train with my government, and there is no way to get off. There is noting I can do about it but watch the horror unfold. It cant be good.
And yeah. It is going to be a tough day.
The protests have become hollow and stale
The politicians posturings become trite and melodramatic
The press reportings a parody of seriousness.
Let them bleed on someone else
I am beyond care
Update on Annie-Annie:
Annie seems to be responding to the CBD oil, though her front legs are getting weaker and weaker. Her appetite is still good, and she sometimes forgets she is in so much pain and leaps around in excitement at treats.
But she has her bad days where she just sleeps and welcomes her treats that are brought to her. She is unable to get up on the bed any longer and has to be lifted up on it.
I do think the CBD oil is helping with the pain, and I am so grateful to the generosity of Sanchia, another rescue warrior who provided the oil. We thought we would be making that awful decision by now, and I am hopeful she will continue to have a reasonably good life right up to the end. May it be a while.
We have been giving it to Jenna as well, a 70lb who knows what that has epilepsy. She too appears to be doing better. A couple of times we spotted a pre-seizure aura, but she didn’t go into a full icktus.
I sure wish there were more medical studies on CBD oil. It is difficult to know if the improvement is due to the oil or simply coincidence. I am going to go with the oil mitigating the ravages of disease.
I almost never endorse a business, but I am going to make an exception here. Support it if you can.