Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Adding up

Ramblings Post #182
My friend Schmoopy once admonished me for not writing a little opening piece like this, and it turns out my brother thinks I skim them from the internet. These extra forty or fifty, or sometimes few hundred words are like that little quotation at the beginning of the chapter of a long novel, meant to prepare your mind for what's to come, or set the stage for that part of the story. Or like this one, to explain why they're here, because I damns sure couldn't think of anything else to write. I got too much else on my mind.

Lately I've been spending a lot of time alone.

Not metaphorically speaking, in that I'm not dancing with thoughts inside my own head like a good version of Suckerpunch while the people around me just don't understand my inner turmoil and a silent epic battle for my sanity rages. I mean I'm actually alone. I got work, then school, then studying, then sleep which means you don't have a lot of time for social life, AND when you factor in that all my folk have lives that they are getting on with just like I'm getting on with mine, my previously tightly packed social calender has seen better times.

As such I am getting introspective in these increasingly long quiet moments. But then there aren't any raging inner storms, so much as looking around my psyche and trying to figure out what the sum total of me adds up to. More like accounting that involves columns like soul fulfillment, present value of future potential evaluation and life goals. And I've realized, when I its my time, that I'm going to be on my way with a shit ton of regret over moments not seized, opportunities not taken, adventures postponed. It's not a good look.

Don't get me wrong, I've lived a full life. I've had more "good times" than most people my age, good being a subjective term (very subjective). More opportunities than I probably should have. Many moments, good and bad. But when I look back at my overall potential...well, let's just say I got a lot of explaining to do. To me and God.

There a lot of things I wish I could go back and change:

I wish that when I was thirteen I could have manned up and actually talked to her, the first object of my affection. And then when it didn't work out, that I could have just moved on.

I wish I had been a little more dedicated in college, the first time, instead of indulging in a gadabout fantasy. I had a real shot, and those moments could have reshaped my entire existence.

I wish that my time that girl in college who said to me "leave if I ever tell you I love you" had ended on better terms. And that I had stayed after she said it.

I wish I could have realized I needed to commit to something earlier in my life, and worked my way through my need to be a jack of all trades, a small part of everything. I think that because I needed to be part of everything, I think I missed out on a lot.

I wish I had said yes, to one of those times heaven had smiled in my direction and made me the object of someone’s desire to marry. A lot of things I treasure that happened later in life would have been forestalled then, and maybe it might not have worked out in the end. But the possibility....

I wish I had taken that hookup job through a friend of a friend. Maybe I was too concerned about getting in over my head, and should have been more focused on taking the chance. Or even that offer in New York, that might have been half conjured fantasy or an inducement to neophyte peon labor.

I wish I had taken the chance to find something else back before I got too used to heat, digital TV and eating in nice restaurants. But then I never would have met Sporty...so that’s kinda iffy.

I wish I had told Sporty how I really felt about her when first started hanging out, and not when we stopped.

I wish I had bought the other house. The house with the full basement and the huge master bath that as I was walking through I could already see the people coming through in my head, as opposed to the house that I bought because I thought I could sell it quickly, on the come up.

I wish I had gone to law school earlier, when I was certain there was more ahead of me than there is now.

I wish I could make the words sing. Not the breezy melody or the song I can make them do that now, but to craft a whole symphony, a complete beginning, middle and ending of what my brother would call the 21st Century Classic American novel.

This last one isn’t all the way behind me. That’s where I’ll start. I’ve always been a writer. Since I scribbled out stories on the back of old ticket books at my father’s dry cleaners I’ve had a story to tell. I am going to finish one these books in my head. It won't change my past, and might not even fix my future. In fact I'm sure it won't. But it will be something.

I'm not looking for the quick fix, 'cause it ain't coming.

But, to paraphrase Kipling, after it all fades away if I can pick up those tools worn of use and start over as though I had nothing... which is what the reality is about to be professionally... and maybe emotionally ... and get back at it, without fear of failure, quiet grumblings or issue, then maybe I can, I dunno, something. Get my mental, emotional and spiritual accounts in order?

I don't know where I'm going, but I do know I can't go back.

Barkeep. If you have to ask, then I haven't been sitting here long enough.

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