Equanimity in Malevolent Climes

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“Puritanism: The haunting fear that someone, somewhere, may be happy.”  ~  H. L. Mencken

“Often, moreover, it is…that aspect of our being that society finds eccentric, ridiculous, or disagreeable, that holds our sweet waters, our secret well of happiness, the key to our equanimity in malevolent climes.”  ~  Tom Robbins

That second quote? I like that, especially the phrase “equanimity in malevolent climes”. Equanimity is an activity well worth pursuing. There are times when I am sure that I have it, but there are also times when I am totally wrong. Numbness is not equanimity. I will admit to being comfortably numb more often than is comfortable; at least for me.

After that last, first, whatever, paragraph I went outside. It’s cold. I didn’t expect that, but 36º at 4:30 AM is what’s on the plate this morning. Mars and egg-shaped moon to the south. Saturn and Pluto are right up there with them as well, but the moonlight overpowers them. There was a little ruckus in the chicken coop, and I listened in case some varmint was in there, but it turned out to be chicken stuff, so I left them to their own business. Cat at my side looking content in her sleep. She’s been quite aggressive lately. I keep a spray bottle with water, set on thin stream, next to this chair, where I spend most of my waking time when not at my day job. A few squirts will calm her down, but I always feel bad when squashing true expression in most anyone. She seeks at times to obtain dominance and that cannot happen until she takes over the rent payments. But back to that equanimity thing, one of the women I worked with at the animal shelter surprised me one day. She was strident at times and this was one of them. She turned suddenly, while we were working together in the cat intake area, and said “That’s what it is about you. You can never tell what you are feeling”. The words just kind of burst from her mouth, like doves taking to flight. I looked at her and chuckled and told her I know. What else could I say? Working with cats requires equanimity as a prerequisite to ease in dealing with a small but dangerous animal. Cats are little empaths. You can’t just act calm, you have to achieve calm and keep it there. They know the difference and they fully appreciate your cooperation. But that woman and I did not really get along very well. There was tension there. I often felt patronized by her. It’s not that I resented that; I know that my behavior at times can be hard to deal with. We never resolved anything. I feel sad about that failure but I just don’t think she liked me very much. Not much I can do about that, but I miss the cats.

There’s a note of deep melancholy humming in my ears this morning. I bow to its beckoning tone. So I will leave this post now and take a slow start of the workday.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

 

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