I came across a word, maybe term is a more accurate description, that got me thinking about other words and lo, and behold, a post is born. The original spark is inconsequential at this point (unless you’re Freud, then it’s the whole point). I digress…
The thing is that right now, this very minute, I am faced with radical decisions that have long range impacts on myself and others. I have to make choices about what I tell prospective landlords about myself, my finances, my sobriety and my future. Lying, or misleading others, is antithetical to maintaining long term sobriety, but my immediate need is a safe and secure place to live. Does that justify some revisionist history and selective recollection? I hope so because prayer doesn’t seem to be working (it might help if I was the one praying and not simply relying on others to beseech the almighty for favor).
Last night was the football game. As usual, the Patriots, led by demigods Bill Belichick and Tom Brady, dismantled their opponent for a seemingly easy victory. There was nothing easy about it – they work very hard to be that good. It is similar to me taking a Calculus final. It may look like I cruised to an easy A, but the truth is that I did all the homework, two and sometimes three times, and spent countless hours honing my knowledge of the subject (my opponent). If only I could handle all of life’s challenges with the same sober calculation, detachment and confidence.
Appearances are meant to deceive. Hiding beneath the measured, geometric, orderly surface is the turbulent, chaotic, unknowable motion of urges, motives and intent.
In my mind
I just met with the woman interested in renting out a room. In my mind it went very well. In my mind I am also smart and handsome. In my mind I am clever, witty and urbane. In my mind I can converse intelligently on almost any subject, I know my limitations and take inoffensive, rational stands on controversial topics. In my mind guys want to be like me and women want to be with me. In my mind I am all that and so much more. Anyone who can’t see that is a darned fool.
Where is my mind?
Back to reality. I am encouraged and hopeful after my meeting, but that does not mean that I can relent in my pursuit of lodgings. I am really hoping this place works out though. There is no cable or WiFi, but that is easily overcome. My rent goes up by $50, which seems steep until it is factored in that I will only be sharing the little house with one other person (and two not-small dogs), instead of sharing a single room with two people and the house with 15 people! If I was still drinking it might work, but this ride is over.
Land of Confusion
Even in times like these; when my future hinges on the actions of others, chances, difficult decisions and complicated arrangements, I still can find pleasure from the simple things that never (almost never) fail to bring relief from my worries. For example, on a whim I decided to listen to an old Pixies album and then got sidetracked by the legend of Nimrod. He was a fictional Sumerian King who, depending on whose book you read, decided to build a tower to Heaven and in doing so brought down the wrath of God. It seems that still today, some 5000 years later, the people of the world are still confounded by different languages (except in mathematics, hmmm…)
I am nothing like the daring and intrepid explorers and survivors who create history by their having lived. If my perseverance can be called intepridity then perhaps my struggle will meet with some measure of success or, at the very least, an end to the struggle. Every day can be seen as an adventure, except days like today when I’m stuck inside on a cold and snowy holiday, and a chance to dare great things and, because it is new, a success.
“At this point I thought ‘We made it,’ by which I meant ‘We survived.’ ”
-Ron Garan, astronaut