It Ain’t What It Ain’t

IMG_1755 - 2014-07-30 at 15-26-57

This may be the quietest morning in quite some time. Warm as well. These starts to the day often fall by the wayside when the work day comes around, as it always does. But this is the time when the day is born, when the hours and minutes, before Father Sun breaks the night’s mold, linger hauntingly upon strands of fading  dreams. This is the time when I like to write. I’m doing that right now. The coffee is just now ready but I have not poured the first cup because I want to finish the paragraph first. This should be easy, but it is not. I wasn’t sure where this paragraph was headed, so I don’t know how it will end. Once again, caught in the moment.

There’s a tiny bit of self-pity trying to hound me this morning, but it can’t, only because it is so small. I’m already looking forward to going to work with the animals today. Sure, I have to work with people as well. We all do it together. That’s what makes it work. There are systems that keep the whole operation on the same page. I sometimes get so wrapped up in the system that I forget, only momentarily, that these are people I am working with, they are not the system. Smiles are the surest way to back down out of such blunders. We all do it, right? I cringe at a stock phrase like that. It’s the same for everybody? I cringe again. We are all one? That goes without saying. At the animal shelter the animals almost always make me smile. The people? Not so much. That shows where I have work to do. Something that goes without saying can also easily go without hearing. Then what? It falls on deaf ears, that’s what it does.

Our opening photograph in today’s post is of a pit bull mix named Clarabelle. She is one of my favorite animals in the shelter. I can’t exactly say why that is, except to say that I like her vibe. You can tell that she likes mine too, her willingness to trust the camera betrays the reputation of her breed. Yes, she can be aggressive. Can’t we all.

My second cup of coffee is the best one I have had in a while. I’m back to the cheap stuff again, but the Starbuck’s I bought recently lasted for longer than I would have expected, so the cheap stuff somehow tastes better. It’s a head game, a mind game, perpetrated by the guy who sits before you now. Truth be told, I am feeling that endgame feeling, where at almost 60 years of age I am working at a low wage job, facing a potential health crisis, and also feeling that I don’t have much to show for it all. It’s not a great conversation lubricant to say “Oh, me? I’m just waiting to find out if I have brain damage”, but that waiting has been going on for three decades now. A little longer won’t hurt. Will it? Not likely. It’s all good.

This gray and quiet morning has finally failed to instill me with my habitual low-grade panic and fear. None of the issues, nor the somatic tendencies, belong to this particular morning. No, I am not going to try to break into that place they so fondly call “Now”. It can wait. That’s simple logic. Mine, my way, is to start out walking and then keep walking. I used to think about stuff like that a lot, spiritual stuff, philosophical stuff. That was back when the fog laid low upon me was still thick and likely to embrace me at any given time. I’d smile and walk, smile and walk. I could hold down a job, I could keep a simple home, and looking back at the nearly deadly bicycle accident was easy, because of the near death vision I’d experienced while laying calmly on the tarmac, where unconsciousness held me at bay, kept me from waking up from what some may called a dream. It had me pinned down against the planet. I was was hurt and injured, what did I know? They didn’t have MRIs back then. And now, when I am finally on the verge of having my electrons jiggled by an MRI machine, I find that thirty years of suppressed fear, grief, and plain old garden variety angst, all haunt me once again, except this time there is no veil laid across them all. This time I will offer and receive an image of my brain. If it shows damage, or if it shows none, either way it shows that something . . . ummm, I don’t know where I was headed with that train of thought. I’m supposed to be walking mindfully through this earthly life. Yes, the coffee is good, better than usual, and my lovely cat is making a stink in her litter box, and irony offers itself on a silver platter, giving to a man the taste of freedom that is available at each and every moment in life. Not bad. If you tell me it is what it is I am gonna scream. It ain’t what it ain’t. How’d ya like them apples?!

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

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