Thursday, March 25, 2010

365 Photo Project - Day 84

Taken: March 25, 2010, Noon
Location: Healdsburg, Ca.

I'm afraid I don't have much to say today, either. It's Thursday and I had to really bear down to get my allotment of pages done so I can make my personal deadline by the end of the week. Now, I'm running home to make dinner. For anyone who knows me, this is a risky venture to say the least as my cooking skills border on the nonexistent. But my husband, the gourmand of the family by a good measure, put down the gauntlet. He challenged me to make the sweet and sour stuffed cabbage rolls that I used to make when I was in college. The best way to get me to do something is to say I can't do it. I'm a sucker that way.

Credit my parents. They made me a believer, always telling me there was nothing I couldn't accomplish, always reminding me the world was my oyster, out there for the taking, out there for whoever wanted it more. So okay, I'm way more cynical about life now. I'm not going to ever play shortstop for the New York Mets. I realize there are forces at work that want to crush your spirit, that do not care how pure your heart or noble your cause. People lie, they cheat, they fail you. They also die. Shit happens and it happens at the most inopportune moments and lightning, when it's bad, does strike twice. At least. Assholes and dickheads get rewarded. You can work hard, leave it all there on the page and still end up unemployed at the end of the day. The school of hard knocks spares no one.

My friend says everything, good and bad, is an opportunity for learning and growing. I realize there's a bit of Zen in that, that it requires a view of the world that isn't beaten and world weary. It requires a certain amount of charity for humanity, which if you've lived through the Bush Administration for example, you know can be a very hard idea to wrap your head around. Seriously, it's hard to view the world that way. Everybody knows the losses can suck and suck the life out of you. And the really bad ones can drag you down with their weight until you're trapped at the very bottom of the cold and dark ocean floor of your life. Some days it seems impossible to swim upward. Some days it's just easier to stop fighting. Some days it feels like the rats win.

But where's the sport in giving up? I mean as corny as dusting yourself off and picking your ass up actually sounds, if you consider the choices out there, it's not like there's better options. The hard way highway is the only way.  But that's the whole point. As Garrison Keillor once said when he was still writing the Mr. Blue column for Salon.com, "It's a shallow life that doesn't have a few scars."

Remember my favorite 13-year-old? The one who loves baseball? Well, his Mom told me today that he likes to say, "If you're having a hard time, just think of kittens. There isn't anything bad about kittens." Now that's a philosophy I can get behind. That's a view of the world worth having.

I shot this with my K100D. It's a shot of one of the oaks in our "backyard" at a very interesting time of the day today. It was sunny and yet still raining and the storm clouds were sitting low -- above them you could just see the coming rush of blue skies and sunshine. A lovely thought I think. That and kittens.

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