Wednesday, September 22, 2004

Electricity off...

Last night, very early evening actually, the lights went out. They flickered and came on and went out again without warning. A blue-white light flashed in the back yard. I picked up the matches I keep near my desk, took a candle from my cabinet, and lit it. Predictably, it was a black candle. Fit my mood last night.

I came face to face with an end to dreaming and a snap back to reality. I tend to forget sometimes that my life is simple because I've chosen to keep it simple and that not everyone is able to do the same. My life has been complicated more times than I care to count, but I always reach for the simple answer.

Today someone asked me if I didn't see gray or did I only see black and white. The answer is that gray is a color, too, but it has become an excuse. Yes, there are extenuating circumstances from time to time, but that does not change things all that much. That is not a gray area. That is an exception to the rule of black and white, but the black and white remain.

Someone else said I was an action oriented person, which is true, but it was not always so. I have been hampered by indecision, by procrastination, and by not wanting to confront a situation head on and it has always ended up creating more problems than the original problem. You can't help avalanches, but if the river is slowly rising, cutting new trenches in the levees and you don't shore up the foundations, you can be sure the river will come crashing thru the disintegrating barrier and take away your house. There's a great line in Cold Mountain.

Ruby Thewes is talking about the insanity of the war. Basically it boils down to: everybody's complaining about the rain, but they made the weather and then they go outside and stand out in it and yell, "Shit! It's raining!"

I usually save my personal rants for my paper journal because writing helps me think and sort thru things. But this is my journal, too, and something I'm going thru might help someone else sort something out or get a different perspective. Writing in my paper journal helps me talk to me, but I'm not much good for interactive feedback...not without someone sending for the white coats with the wrap around jacket and the big net.

So you're all guinea pigs in my evil plot to make the world a simpler place. So quit kicking and fall in line. Make your life simpler. Follow me right off the cliff and into the sea like the good little lemmings I know you all are.

But seriously, we all tend to make things more difficult than they are. We worry about next year, next decade, and about things that haven't even happened. I've done it. You've done it. And it paralyzes us all. You don't know what will happen until you make a move. Think of the absolute worst that could happen (and I don't mean important parts falling off either) and if you can face that you can face anything.

I've had some interesting adventures in my life and things have not always been easy, but one thing I know that few people ever find out is that I can face anything and live thru it. I have walked thru the fire and walked out the other side intact. I wouldn't suggest anyone follow in my footsteps, but if you never take a chance, if you spend the rest of your life being afraid of what might happen you will never move far enough away to find out that you just missed out on the best part of your life.

Life is about risk. Take a risk, even if it's only doing something you've always wanted to do but were afraid to try. Go to a mall and sit and watch the people if you're afraid of social situations. Tell someone you love them even if they don't say it back. Be honest with yourself and put yourself out there. Sometimes you will fall down and get dirty and sometimes...more times than you realize...someone will offer you a hand and help you up. And then there are the times you try something completely out of the ordinary and find you like it so much you want to do it again.

My grandmother always said we weren't allowed to not like something unless we tried it first. Gagging, coughing, and various disgusting sounds followed sometimes, but at least we knew what we did and didn't like. And sometimes we got a surprise and something we were sure we'd never like turned out to be something we loved.

In the meantime, here are a few lyrics:

I got crazy yesterday and I called her to say,
"Please, baby, won't you come home tonight?"
I can't even trust my brain to get my heart in from the rain
I know that girl's a hurricane in her own right.
Then, early next morning after she was going I sat there in my chair all alone
I called my friend a cryin', asking him why that girl was always doing me so wrong.
He said, when the gates are all down and the signals are flashing
and the whistle is screaming in vain,
if you stay on the tracks ignoring the facts,
well, you can't blame the wreck on the train.

No, you can't blame the wreck on the train.

Well, how many times have I promised myself
not to do the same thing as before?
I swear I will leave it alone and believe it
and then I'll turn around and do it some more.

Well fool me one time it's shame on you
Fool me twice it's shame on me
That's what my best friend warned me
when he called me this morning
then he reminded me...

He said, when the gates are all down
and the signals are flashing,
and the whistle is screaming in vain,
if you stay on the tracks ignoring the facts,
well, you can't blame the wreck on the train.
You gotta quit blaming that train.

Believe it.

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