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Vanilla 1.1.2 is a product of Lussumo. More Information: Documentation, Community Support.

    We were lucky with the storm here. Only 6-8 inches of snow (I didn't go out to measure it). It was over by 3pm and the road and my driveway plowed and clear by 4 pm. luckily the temp was and still is above freezing. About 35 degrees on my front porch right now. I'm ready for the cottage on the lake.
    • CommentAuthorpaulc
    • CommentTime4 days ago
    • CommentAuthorWolf
    • CommentTime2 hours ago
    Hammock musing

    Where did everything go? I wondered that in the same way I wondered where mummy went when I got lost in Woolworth's that time as a kid, and felt completely abandoned and absolute panic. It only lasted a minute while I raced around hoping against hope - and there she was in the back somewhere. I'll remember the creaky wooden floorboards in that horrible, horrible store forever.

    I muse sometimes which to me means walk through my thoughts and memories like a tourist at NASA gawking at all the stuff. I remember getting caught taking some candy from an opened bag in the supermarket and getting grabbed by an angry employee who escorted me out. I was shaking when I walked back to the car where dad was waiting and just slipped into the back seat. "Is she nearly done?" he asked impatiently. I mumbled something and sat low hoping the mean man wouldn't see me. Two decades later, Dianne and I sometimes went to that plaza which had a pizza place in the back and we would share a pizza and a bottle of rose wine.

    My third floor window in the attic in the house I grew up in. That small room had it's own staircase and a peaked roof. The small window faced west and I spent hours and hours looking out of it dreaming. I'm pretty sure my main dream landscape fifty years later is from my ideas about what the city was like then. The way it extends along the lake doesn't fit with reality but it fits neatly into what I imagined back then.

    "Show me." That's what I say when I have a thought with questions around it. That is, unless I'm busy running uphill away from the tsunami. I hate that I couldn't save her. I remember feeling a deep disappointment that this was all there is. This strange girl in this basement apartment in a depressing world of junior clerk in an awful, brooding sick green building run by people that lined the desks up in rows where the finance manager had a desk at the front facing all the others as though school never ended except now I got paid enough to live on in a basement apartment.

    How that evolved into the meaningful life it did has a lot more to do with accepting what life was and getting used to things, than it did with any spiritual breakthroughs. I've always been hugely disappointed by what life is like in equal measure with gratitude and fear. That was our family motto - Dianne and I - 'growth and fear'.

    The best condition for a human being is to feel lucky in their lot, I'm sure of it. No particulars required; just meet that condition. I've known that feeling many times and in quite different places and circumstances. I'm one of those people that looks around once in a while and takes things in. No idea why. I remember seeing Ferris Bueller years later and when he looked into the camera and said, "Life goes by pretty fast. If you don't look around once in a while, you could miss it." Right in the theatre I answered "you are so right".

    I think survivors may go through this trying to stitch up the ripped off parts with thoughts and memories. Like feeling twinges of pain in a long lost limb that isn't there anymore. An exercise steeped in the word 'poignant'. The dictionary misses the point on that word. It isn't sorrow or misery. It's that delicate balance point between love and pain in a similar way biting into the dark chocolate to release the cognac inside is.

    My wife never lived unmarried or without me. She did lose the ability to 'know' that. Only I live unmarried and without her. I have to learn how to live in that with the goal of living well. That is a proper use of the word poignant.

    There is a balance my rational mind can reach which is that there are about as many good things as there are bad things. There are tons of truly great people walking around right now just as there are truly bad people. There are as many beautiful scenes happening and inspiring events going on as there are miserable things going on.

    I get the local paper in our mid sized city because I'm supporting journalism. I've been a subscriber for 11 years and I've actually started reading it. It's full of local stories of people helping each other or giving or saving someone just as it is full of break ins and even a serial killer in our city.

    Laying here in the hammock, I think about the word 'breakthrough' and after wondering what that means, I settle on 'where the boundaries of fear meet opportunity'. You have to be at the boundary of a thing to break through. You don't break through from the middle and you don't break through when nothing's happening. You need an opportunity.
    • CommentAuthorWolf
    • CommentTime2 hours ago

    Very little of any of this was like that. In so many ways, it was like losing more things in life before seeing any new ones added. The tiny singularity I became was a serious shield. The depression grip and spiritual torment were familiar live-ins for over a decade. The truths of the horrors lost their relevancy and revealed a bitter and lonely man. It was transitions within transitions that began other transitions where there never was any boundary so much as a state.

    When the hero finally did leave her behind and rode off into the sunset alone, he wasn't happy about any of it. How in heavens name did I ever not always know that? Because I learn every day and I live in a world where nobody wants to know. The hero rides off into the sunset with his squeeze. End and close book. Nobody wants to know about their 401k or their real lives.

    And, yet, that's how it actually was. No writer or director. No proper storyline. Which wasn't a problem going through life, face pressed against the window, tongues hanging out, living forever. I spent my life suspending disbelief while certain I wasn't. I spent my life in a world I became deeply attached to, that became so real, I still sit here sometimes by the side of the road where the car went over the cliff, stitching together thoughts and memories. That car took ten years to veer off that road and go over that cliff and the whole time, there wasn't a thing I could do.

    I'm the survivor of a catastrophe, and that's one of the things we do afterwards. Sit and stitch.

    I'm also blessed with knowing I live in an ineffable universe. Unlike the mangled truths of the self aware living together, physics is always exquisite and elegant in revealing the language and the nuts and bolts of what God actually made. Unlike the jealous and needy ones of human imagination, the universe that's really here is a masterwork of coherence, universality, redundance, and beauty.

    Make the rock get up and dance and tell jokes. Don't know how? This universe does. One minute you're rubbing two sticks together and the next you're Henny Youngman starting out in Vaudeville and after playing some violin you look at the audience and say, "Take my wife." "Please." And you wait.

    Or take the greatest advancement in mankind. Sports. The little darlings finally stopped needing to kill each other to get their ya-ya's out and instead beat each other up getting pieces of leather into a fishing net or over some sticks.

    Like all things, it depends on how we look at them. Which takes me back to Pollyanna who said a mouthful when she said "If you look for the good in people you will surely find it. And if you look for the bad in people you will surely find it."

    To which Frank Drebin replied, "That's right. And stop calling me Shirley." (did you see that coming bhv?)

    A very young Jim Carrey in his first appearance on the Johnny Carson show in 1983.