Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Right On, George

"I love and treasure individuals as I meet them; I loathe and despise the groups they identify with and belong to."

George Carlin

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

More Than A Sigh

Sirius XM has become the church in which I worship.

They do special promotional stuff. In December they began a temporary Eagles channel and continued it into January. I have listened to nothing else since I discovered it. No blues, Beatles, Grateful Dead, no nothing.

The Eagles music is introspective and intelligent. It perfectly suits my mood at the moment.

Cool when this happens because I am learning a lot about the Eagles. Hearing songs I never heard before, hearing stories told by band members that open things up to me, learning which other artists influenced them, digging on their commentary about how they write songs.

This happened to me when I discovered The Grateful Dead channel. I used to like them, now I love them. Learned a lot, continue to learn.

Anyway, the Eagles music has synced with my emotions, it has inspired emotional response in me, the lyrics got me thinking about being a human being and all the bizarre things we go through.

Some we learn from, some feed us, some hurt us, some knock us down.

For some reason as I was leaving the house yesterday I grabbed Gregg Allman's final CD and listened to it to and fro from work.

Much about that CD moves me. In fact everything about that CD moves me.

Gregg covered a Grateful Dead song called "Black Muddy River" on this CD. Never heard it before this album. I love it. It rips me apart.

My favorite verse:

"When it seems like the night will last forever, and there's nothing left to do but count the years, when the strings of my heart begin to sever, and stones fall from my eyes instead of tears............

I will walk alone by the black muddy river, and dream me a dream of my own, I will walk alone by the black muddy river, and sing me a song of my own, sing me a song of my own."

I have never felt so alone in my own head since Carol got sick. Alone in the sense that thoughts and emotions fill up the inside of my skull. Continuously.

My perspective has altered drastically and permanently. I am off balance trying to make sense of it, trying to figure out where to go from here and how to get there. 2018 is the most important year of my life, and I do not say that lightly.

Most important in the sense that I feel an enormous responsibility to do the things that will allow Carol to retire. ASAP. I need to do more. Try harder. Give it everything I got.

In other words, I need to step up to the fucking plate.

I have done so to a great extent as far as running the house goes. I take care of everything and that is as it should be.

But there is a lot more on the line than just doing the dishes.

Carol encouraged me to retire a couple of years ago. Honestly I had not given it a thought before then because I figured we could never afford it. But once she said it, it got into my head and I went ahead and did it.

It is now on my shoulders to find a way to return the favor.

I fucking hate watching her go to work every day. Especially on my days off. It is not fair to her.

The alarm went off this morning at 6:00. Carol shut it off and sighed. I was awake.

That sigh broke my heart.

I keep this all in my head (until now). The Eagles and Gregg Allman provide emotional release for me. Just me and them in the car seeking understanding; understanding of this fucking life we lead, so unpredictable, often unfulfilling and cruel.

So short.

Carol's troubles have forced me to look hard at myself.

I have always been my own harshest critic anyway, typically in a negative way.

I can't afford that now.

These words sound so hollow to me.

Intentions are bullshit.

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Gotta Think About It

Shooting for a little more maturity in 2018.

Hope it doesn't dilute my personality.

Monday, January 1, 2018

Birthday Thoughts - #64.

It is 10:41 pm on January 1, 2018 as I begin to write this post.

I am alone. Sort of. Lakota is sound asleep on my lap, Maka is sleeping on the back of the chair to my right, Carol has gone to bed.

Carol has gone to bed because she has to get up early tomorrow. She is going back to work full time.

Full fucking time.

I would give anything, anything at all, for her to never have to work full time for one more day in her life.

This is fucking killing me. Imagine what it is doing to her.

Had a nice day today. Celebrating my birthday with my brother Ed, his new woman Carolina, and my son Keith.

Was that the right thing to do? Celebrating my birthday while Carol suffers every single motherfucking day?

I don't know anymore. I do not know what is the right thing to do. Don't even know what is the right thing to feel.

Keith showed up, I hugged him and burst into tears. Don't know where it came from. Maybe I am just overwhelmed. Blown away to have my family around me, crushed by the expectations of a new year.

I don't want to go to bed. I don't want tomorrow to come. Don't want Carol to have to work full time.

I am sipping on whiskey that I shouldn't be sipping.

I am broken and I am broken and I am broken.

Imagine how Carol feels.

A very bittersweet birthday. Don't know the significance of it, don't know if it is even worth recognizing.

I wonder why Carol is the one to go through this shit. Why not me?

I am the one who has lived a reckless life. I should pay. Not Carol.

And I am convinced my time is coming. There will be a reckoning.

I hope that when that happens, she does not have to deal with it.

She does not deserve that.

Strange birthday this year.

No clue what any of this means.

For 2018

your life is your life
don't let it be clubbed into dank submission.
be on the watch.
there are ways out.
there is a light somewhere.
it may not be much light but
it beats the darkness.
be on the watch.
the gods will offer you chances.
know them.
take them.
you can't beat death but
you can beat death in life, sometimes.
and the more often you learn to do it,
the more light there will be.
your life is your life.
know it while you have it.
you are marvelous
the gods wait to delight
in you.

"The Laughing Heart",   Charles Bukowski

For 2018

"This year I will be more thoughtful of my fellow man, exert more effort in each of my endeavors, professionally as well as personally. Take love wherever I find it, and offer it to everyone who will take it.

In this coming year I will seek knowledge from those wiser than me and try to teach those who wish to learn from me. I love being alive and I will be the best man I possibly can."

From Duane Allman's diary, January 1, 1969

Sunday, December 31, 2017

December 31, 2017.

December 31. The pulse quickens.

Maybe, maybe not.

Always feels that way to me. My pulse quickens. My thoughts run deep. Anticipation overwhelms me.

Now that we are older and not caught up in craziness, if we are not working on New Year's Eve day (like today), it feels like we are just hanging around waiting for midnight.

Not exciting, not fun.

We started today off well. Met Jason and Karen for breakfast at 9:00. Good conversation, some laughter, great friendship. Felt really good.

Got THE PATS at 1:00. Today feels like it will roll us comfortably right into 2018. I like it.

I hope Carol is able to stay up until midnight. I don't want to bring the new year in alone. It means too much to us this year.

Lots of people gearing up for a good drunk tonight. I got no problem with that. Anything you gotta do to escape reality for a few hours is vital to your survival.

However I always felt that new year's eve madness is a strange mix of hope and hopelessness.

Everybody wants a new life in a new year. Everybody wants change. Everybody wants a better life. Everybody knows nothing will change. That on December 31, 2018 they will be in the exact same place they are in right now.

January 2 is the cruelest day of the year. January 2 is the day everything returns to "normal".

And normal hurts. Normal sucks.

In one way everything will stay the same for Carol and me as of January 2. The best, the very fucking best thing that could happen, would be that Carol wakes up fully healed on that day. 100% back to normal.

That is not going to happen.

She will continue to struggle. I will continue to shed tears.

But in another way, I know Carol will continue to fight like the warrior that she is. I know she will be fully healed this year and she will have her health back and I will have my wife back.

I also know that I am committed to doing everything in my power to make our life better. Fully fucking, seriously, dedicated and committed.

This is on my shoulders.

So 2018 will be different in that way. Different in that Carol will emerge victorious against the fucking evil things that have knocked her down. Different in that I am going to make happiness happen.

So bring on 2018. Bring on January 2.

Never had a more meaningful new year than this one. That says a lot considering the fact that Jonathan and Sarge died at the end of 2014. 2015 meant something too. And then, unfortunately, Kevin died in March of 2015. You never fucking know what life is going to slap you around with.

But hard as it is to say, this year it is even more personal.

Carol and I are united in our tenacious commitment to making 2018 a good year.

"Fairytale Of New York". The Pogues. Got some lines in there that mean something to me.

"Got on a lucky one, came in at eighteen to one, I've got a feeling this year's for me and you.............I can see a better time when all our dreams come true."

Typical delusional bullshit that we all wallow in. Yeah, things are going to get better. But, in a way, I feel like Carol and I could really make that happen.

Why not? Is there some immutable fucking law of karma that says you can't go from the worst year of your life to the best year of your life?

We are going to give it one hell of a shot.