The Freedom to Play Cat and Mouse

“Magic doesn’t require beauty,’ she said. ‘Easy magic is pretty. Great magic asks that you trouble the waters. It requires a disruption, something new.” ~ Leigh Bardugo

“Protect your good image from the eyes of negative viewers, who may look at your good appearance with an ugly fiendish eye, and ruin your positive qualities with their chemical infested tongues.” ~ Michael Bassey Johnson

“This cat-and-mouse could not last forever, and he also knew that when you are the mouse you don’t have much to say about it to the cat.” ~ Robert Olmstead

Where does the time go? It goes nowhere, as I see it. Aging, however, seems to be a different story. Unlike Aesop, there are a shitload more morals to your story than just one. Given a preference, I would choose the cartoon version Aesop’s Fables – which appeared alongside Rocky and Bullwinkle and Sherman and Peabody – to the real thing. But maybe that’s just me. Yes, I am a total Rocky and Bullwinkle fan. Now, moving right along. I usually say “moving forward”, but I’m just not in the mood for that. Most people seem to believe that time travels in a straight line. I beg to differ. I believe that it sometimes throws off an orthogonal branch that is not unlike the one that Robert Frost noted poetically as he gazed upon the snowy woods. And it sometimes curls back on itself, which may indeed explain the feeling of déjà vu. As for myself this morning, I am feeling somewhat curly, and I ain’t talkin’ Three Stooges here. I’ve had quite a few spells of déjà vu lately.

Just back from stepping outside under the stars. I was last outing was about 4 AM, to haul the trash bin out to the side of the road for pickup. I needed a flashlight. Too dark. Walking back I stopped at my car for a quick smoke. Once my eyes became readjusted after turning off the flashlight, I saw Orion overhead. And Sirius, and the Pleiades. Sirius and the Pleiades – it sounds like a 60s rock band, or the aliens from those two places that some folks claim exist. The stars were brilliant. Hopefully I will be as well, as I perform my job today. I’m in an unprecedented mood today. That’s one of the cool things about aging – at least for me. Experiencing purely new feelings is no small thing. I describe it as a Longing, but these feelings are a spiral step up from days of yore. Transcendence, evolution, or simply a bit higher than before. I can tinker away choosing attributes that may become revealed about this Longing. But all I get from that is the voice of Rocket J. Squirrel, who says: “Aw, Bullwinkle, that trick never works”. One thing I like about the Longing is that it seems to be immune to the meddlesome tyranny of PTSD. Yes, my PTSD is professionally diagnosed, so don’t even start with me, k? I’m not like the people who say – undiagnosed, except for their own – that they are OCD, when they really just don’t want to slow down about 2% and simply pay attention. Just sayin. Maybe this Longing provides a kind of healing relief from virulent anxiety and fear? Yeh, I think so. Or maybe even a way out? I wouldn’t go that far. But I did recently find an actual proactive use for the hypervigilence I live with every friggin 24/7, or whatever, of my life. I’ve got a situation where I am pretty much the mouse mentioned in the Robert Olmstead quote above. Luckily I know a lot about cats, from my time working with them at the animal shelter. But about the hypervigilence: since I already have it all the time it takes no more expenditure of energy to make use of it. Turning it to my own benefit is pretty much free. And that is how I feel this morning, at least until I get out on the highway and get the inevitable tailgater, who will piss me off, and when he finally backs off some I will softly say “There now, that’s a good boy”, or something like that. It might sound like I respond to the situation with sarcasm, but what I am really accomplishing with that utterance is to say it to both myself and the nitwit behind me. By heeding my own – ummmm – sarcasm I can make myself smile, then transcending the feeling of self-importance that I get from acting all high and mighty by getting pissed off in the first place. That too is freedom. Freedom does not even mean to be free of troubles and nitwits, it just means that you don’t – no, wait – even getting pissed off is okay when you feel free, because it is a real event in life. So when you get pissed off it is just a matter of what you are going to do with it. You can shine Light on the world regardless.

All is well. Goof gloriously.

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