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Randomania


I visit Rufus, Martin’s dog, to console him. He had surgery to remove a tumor and he appreciates my company while Martin is at work. I left my phone on Martin’s patio last week and my first instinct was to text Martin to make sure it was there. Duh! When I swung by  several minutes later Martin confessed that he had texted me to let me know he had my phone. How did we become this dependent on a piece of technology? And this stupid.

###

I overheard a conversation among young people at Iris. They mostly work minimum wage jobs and have crushing levels of student loan debt, tens of thousands of dollars, that they have no hope of repaying. One young man, the only one among the group without student debt, contended that it revealed higher education as a scam since there aren’t any jobs for you when you graduate anyway. I had to pipe in to say that the problem wasn’t higher education as a concept but higher education as a profit center. College was never intended to be strictly a vocational school. A broad based education was to prepare you for a richer life in general. Low information voters and low voter turnout, I argued, are, at least in part, the result of poor education which results in detachment, apathy and cynicism. Germany understands this and has made a college education free for all citizens. A well rounded, liberal arts education imparts critical thinking skills and knowledge about the deeper issues and furthers the purpose and processes of democracy. This has more inherent value than military adventurism  for a free society. Unfortunately, it doesn’t serve the oligarchy and their corporate media propagandists. A stupid, distracted and compliant populous best serves them.

###

You can’t leave all of your options open. Even if you try. A concept I have struggled with all my life. There’s always another job. Another girl. Another place to live. But rather than a way to move forward, that kind of thinking guarantees you’ll get stuck.

Besides there’s the island of unintended results. Small decisions made with little thought because of seemingly small consequences have a way of cumulatively ballooning into big decisions. Life making or breaking results. The sum total of your life, the calculus of your existence. Jobs taken or quit. Women wooed or abandoned. How do you balance the rewards and disasters of a carefree life with the safe, and secure but possibly sterile planned life?

###

Waiting

You wait

for bedtime

supper

sex

vacation

your next pay raise

A phone call

your tax refund

test results

the end of the wash cycle

her period

retirement

The end of the chapter, the last verse, the punch line, the final scene, the guitar solo

Patience is worthless

as is impatience

Everything happens

in its own time

The Guinness will settle

the paint will dry

the cab will arrive

or not

the rain will stop

the smoke will clear

Waiting for the ball to drop on New Year’s Eve, to close out another year of joy and disappointment and frustration and ecstasy and misery and the greying hair and swelling prostate continue unabated while you take one more shower or drink one more beer although nobody is counting

Much of life waiting

for petty events

when really

you wait for death

and what happens after

which is probably

nothing

 

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