Monday, June 19, 2017

Vacation or Education

My bored hands free for a time,
now make drumming sounds,
now handle lumber and hammer nails.
Now they grip a steering wheel for
hours at a time, getting me places.
Now they snap photos of unfamiliar places,
now they drop coins in rest stop vending ops.

Many activities not normally undertaken are now,
stimulating the mind and those worn fingers too.
Pleasure takes many forms and has many names,
but variety and novelty are two I give her today.
How much work can a body do to enjoy time off?
Quite a bit, I'm finding, and it leaves me refreshed.

Camping out gives the hands a good workout,
and the body a pleasant change of scenery.
Plucking flowers or hauling supplies,
propelling oneself through water or casting a line,
skipping a rock or baiting a hook.
Operations so much better than wielding a
snow shovel in bitter January.

Enjoy your summer and vacation time,
May you find new thrills and feel just fine.


Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Thoughts on passing the 60 mile marker

     I am mobile in terms of walking around and doing my job – a labor job, cleaning a large office complex. But walking on the sidewalk, a younger man just flies by me without breaking a sweat. If I try and speed up, I get out of breath, and limp due to a hurting hip – and he keeps right on getting further ahead of me. I have to face it, I'm slowing down relative to a young, strapping man in his prime. But I still encounter slower people who are older than me, or infirm, and I can easily pass them by.

My sex life is not nearly as active these days – but then again, neither is my libido. Although still well capable of an orgasm, they are not nearly as frequent as when I was in my twenties or teens – obviously.

My appetite is not quite what it was. And it seems a bit easier to get drunk. Also, to be hung over. My urination is slow, unless I have drank a lot of water (or beer). My typing has slowed some, and I often struggle with transpositions. My bifocals can cause problems reading, finding the correct distance. I can still get things done, even though I'm not as motivated.

An advantage of being older is that it gives you a longer view of things. Having experienced a lot, my first instinct is to pause and take a hard look at whatever it is confronting me. I've seen so many fake advertisements, and heard so many lying politicians, that nothing really impresses me these days.
Except performance. People doing what they say they will do. Things working out as promised. Workers who show excellent competence, whether they are street sweepers, auto mechanics, waitpersons, or whatever else. Competence and following through rule the day for me. Promises and adverts are the same as believing in the tooth fairy or the Easter bunny.

I've become more cynical, sure. But still determined to see good when and where it happens. A happy life moment, at work or socializing. A laugh, a compliment, a hug or a kiss. A good meal. I try harder to see and acknowledge the good things when they happen. Life isn't all bad, even if the news makes it seem so. We enjoy many comforts that were not around when I was born.
Let's see, 1957... Leaded gas, foul air, everyone smoking cigarettes. Air Conditioning was a big luxury. No microwave, black and white TV, if you were lucky enough to have one. Big dial phone on the desk or wall, no cellphones. Computers were huge hulks in offices, and didn't do that much. A student who had a manual typewriter was ahead of the game. There were more tubes in radios than transistors. It was he beginning of spaceflight – Sputnik was launched. The Moon landings and the shuttle were many years in the future yet. Eisenhower was president, and people were scared enough of war with Russia to begin building home fallout shelters. It was a grim time to say the least, especially compared to life in 2017.


I remember being sick a lot. We also had some good family discussions around the dinner table. Later, we got a better TV, and I can remember some good new shows on TV, like Green Hornet and Time tunnel. The Flint and James Bond movies were keeping us thrilled. We went as a family to see the Sound of Music. These events were in the 1960's, of course. A lot of events are munged together in my memory. Memory is timeless – everything is mixed in together, and memories change over time. But I am sure glad in one respect – it beats the alternative. Hope that I can stay out of the obits for a long time to come. Thanks for reading.


Friday, June 09, 2017

Ditty 'bout summer

Summer and baseball are in “full swing.”
Graduation parties, picnics, concerts,
Parties galore all over town.
Lilies, peonies and petunias blooming away,
summer colors and crowds cheerful and gay.
Wildflowers add their pink surprise,
to contrast the itchy green I surmise.

Grass grows fast with annoying regularity,
must match it and mow faithfully weekly.
Jeans ditched for shorts in the suffering heat,
Shoes swapped for sandals, don't miss a beat.

Time to air up the bike tires, and glide down leafy trails.
Race a train back to home base past howling softball crowds.
Put the bike away, then do a few push-ups for good measure,
then hit the shower, pleased with the first work-out of summer.

We paid for this with the horrors of January,
the biting wind, brutal ice, and blinding snow.
Cold that seeped in through every crack,
permeating drafty homes and aging bones alike.

Now –
Sunlit beauty melts away chill remnants
in one's soul and replaces with hopeful color.
Even sweat and swoon cannot defray the
benefits of such an explosion of bounty.

Here is to non-stop enjoyment of summer bliss:
Sniff peonies, dip in a river, give the lover a kiss.
No manufactured governmental crisis, nor
employer-mandated miseries can ever
steal away our enjoyment of natures gifts.

Not even allergies and constant sneezes
deter me from savoring balmy summer breezes.
May one and all alike enjoy the fruits of the season,
Step outside and feel the joy, experience over reason.