Wednesday, March 18, 2009

My time, best days, caring & football

I own time, for the moment, anyway ....

This week is mine. No work. No concerns.

Some might say that is a very typical week for me. Some might be right in the sense that if it were not for having to be in a specific location performing tasks under the direction of others who pay me for that service, the work is nothing to get excited about. It long ago became something more like routine activity rather than work -- rather than actual toil and labor.

This is resumption of an old theme of mine. How can anyone possibly work at the same job for 30 or 40 years without going crazy? I suppose safety and security and feeling comfortable with one's own skill level at performing a specific task is part of it. But why people trade a lifetime of potential exploration for a guaranteed wage (maybe not even that) and mundane routine escapes me. It would be like living in perpetual winter, to me.

Certainly, some work is going to be fulfilling, as in the instance of a nurse caring for people who need assistance, but how about cooking in a restaurant or delivering mail or assembling toys in a factory? How does anyone do it for years without end? If someone can explain it, I would like to hear it.

Doom and gloom enter the room ....

What days are among those you might consider to be the "best days" of your life?

One candidate for me would be the days of sitting around outside on campus lawns or in the student union, drinking coffee and smoking cigarettes and arguing about religion or politics or you name it.

Going out after work for a few drinks usually results in talk about work (or sports). I foster it as much as anyone, but whatever happened (among adults) to the great debates of youth and solving every problem there is to solve in the world?

Maybe we became "too mature" to care, or realized nothing we did anyway would make much difference. Call it a fatalistic attitude if you wish but, with few exceptions, I do not believe anything anyone here can do will make a difference much beyond the range of their own neighborhood.

I am not talking about volunteering at a hospital or a nursing home, or being a scout leader. Doing things like that obviously can be meaningful to life, survival and sanity in a rather nasty world.

What I am talking about is accepting the word of political demigods and following the zealots of political ideology which preach promises impossible to keep and spread rumors to frighten the weak and the timid into blind obedience. Some of those things are exciting and colorful, others offer security, but all are more dangerous than most would realize.

My step-dad told me more than once that I should enjoy my high school days because they would be the best days of my life. He was off only by a couple of years. Maybe not exactly the best days, but arguably some of the most enjoyable days for me, were those sitting on the campus grounds smoking cigarettes and drinking coffee and arguing about which of us was destined for hell. I am close to believing that we all are, at least we in the United States of America, with hell encircling us a bit more every day. The fascists are in the process of taking over, and half the citizenry in the country either do not care or actually wish for it to happen.

Who? Me?

A number of years ago, in college, a good friend of mine and a drinking buddy told me he was disappointed in me. He said he had admired me because I had the guts to do anything and did not give a damn about anyone or anything. Now, he said, he had seen me fail to live up to one of his expectations.

I told him he was close in his evaluation of me, but that he had somewhat misinterpreted me. I told him I might have the guts (or the arrogance) to do anything, but that I actually gave a damn about everyone and everything. Can you understand the resemblance in style and action of these two types in terms of behavior, and the confusion that might result among onlookers?

We stayed friends, but not as close. He had disappointed me, too.

Spring football practice has arrived .....

Spring football practice has officially opened in my neighborhood. The two boys next door, along with two of their friends, held a backyard scrimmage. Their yard was clear of snow, but I keep my deck shoveled and, subsequently, my snow was in piles and has been slower to melt and, subsequently, my yard was wet, slushy and muddy in spots.

Of course, "young boys" engaged in demonstrating their athletic prowess cannot be confined to one yard, and their game spilled over onto mine. It has been a while since I have seen boys get so absolutely covered with mud. It also has been a while since I last passed a football. No broken windows, I am pleased to report, and my jeans washed out almost completely clean.

Music Note: Listening to Bon Jovi ....
Specifically, "The Left Feels Right" ....
Some lines from: "Born to Be My Baby:"

If we stand side by side (all night)
There's a chance we'll get by (and it's alright)
And I'll know that you'll be live
In my heart till the day that I die

Cause you were born to be my baby
And baby, I was made to be your man
We got something to believe in
Even if we don't know where we stand
Only God would know the reason
But I bet he must have had a plan
Cause you were born to be my baby

And baby, I was made to be your man


Anonymous said...

some work is going to be fulfilling,good!

Fram said...

Finding fulfilling work is not hard. Finding work that continues to be fulfilling after a year or two is what I find difficult.

You have magnificent page.

TheChicGeek said...

Where to begin Fram? You are stretching my brain...can you hear the squeek? How nice for you to have a week of vacation and time to play football in the yard :) I've worked as a court reporter for...OMG...just added it up, 28 years! Forever. It has served me well. I've actually enjoyed what I do most all of my life. I learn a lot about so many different things, meet very exciting and intelligent people, people from all walks of life, and it can be very interesting. Sometimes I get frustrated and want to scream, but overall, I like it. Would I like to do something else? Yes! I've had many dreams of doing other types of things, mostly more creative things, but up to this point, life has not given me that opportunity. At this point, I really just experience most of my excitement in my "real life," rather than through the work I do. I'm thankful that I have a fulfilling career that gives me a good living and flexibility.
Best days?
I'm not sure I can really name the "best days" of my life because there are so many. I loved being a young child and playing in the yard with my sisters, climbing the plum tree and squishing our toes in the mud, summers relaxing in the sun and rolling in the grass. I loved being a teenager running wild and getting in to all sorts of mischief. I loved hanging out at the beach, bodysurfing and just chilling with not a care in the world. I loved my college years, experimenting and trying to figure out who I was. I loved being married and raising my children...didn't love divorcing and feeling sad, lonely and defeated, but I did love the journey to finding my authentic self...which I'm still working on...and all of that came out of the hurt and disappointments in my life. At this time in my life I feel good about myself. Could life be better? Yes, the grass is always greener on the other side, isn't it? No. In reality, it is very good right here and now. I believe there are still many people that care and do try to make a difference in the world, not only in their neighborhood but beyond. Do I accept the word of the political demigods and follow the zealots of political ideology? No. I live in very liberal California and I'm not a liberal so it can be difficult to be "my authentic self" in crowds here because the crowd usually falls far to the left of my beliefs. I'm more of a moderate conservative...that doesn't go over well out
Thank you for leaving me a chair this time. I need to go oil up my brain for your response :)

Fram said...

May I say, wow? I cannot recall such a lengthy comment from you anytime in the past, Kelly.

It must be getting near bedtime for you, so I'll write a longer response and it'll be here when you find some time tomorrow (later today) OK? I need some time to absorb all that you wrote.

Sleep well.

TheChicGeek said...

Yes, I'm usually zippy.
Sleep well to you too :)

Magdalena said...

Hi Fram, thank you for supporting me, I just hate when someone tells me what should I like and do, an eat or drink. Have a good day :-) Bye, bye.

Fram said...

How can work be fulfilling? I think you explained that very well, Kelly.

Best days? Come on now, you have to narrow it down some. Just teasing. I have had many good ones, too, and I think I was just going back to a point where everything seemed exceedingly simple with hindsight: Those days of being a student, if we only realized it at the time.

Check out the invitation you received.

Fram said...

I accept your thank you, Magdalena, although it certainly was not necessary. I believe the appreciation of art has absolutely nothing to do with the politics of the artist. Such a contrast would be like condemning the day because you cannot see the stars.

It is my pleasure to know you, an individual who seems to believe that as well. I admire you for standing your ground, and for doing so with grace and politeness.

TheChicGeek said...

Very true.
I see you have written to check out the invitation and I feel a little less paranoid now.

Fram said...

I do that to all the girls.

Fram said...

I think it's my eyes.

Katy said...

Aside from being able to do exactly what one wanted without the constraints of needing to earn a crust, I guess work that didn't *feel like* work would be the ideal? I ran my own business for 3 years, and sometimes I worked very hard indeed, but that didn't feel quite like work in the same way: no petty workplace rules, no having to go to pointless meetings, and it didn't matter if I chose to work at 3 in the afternoon or 3 in the morning wearing only my pyjamas. And I could smoke at my desk :-)

Best days so far? Oh, too many of them I think, I've been very lucky. If I had to pick a time period, I think the year of being 17 was wonderful. The first rush of young adult independence - friends, boys, music, learning to drive - but no real responsibilities either. Roo was born when I was quite young and seeing her grow up has been (is!) wonderful as well. I also feel happier and more content than I have in years right now too.

Your game of muddy yard football sounds wonderful! Dirt is good for the soul :-)

Fram said...

People are reflecting and answering. Thank you, Katy.

It is fun to think about times such as "best" moments or days or years. I recall being 11 and being so happy with life that I said out loud, to myself, that I wished I could stay 11 forever. Maybe I have done just that.

I rarely go back to the town where I grew up. No immediate family there any longer. But, when I do go back, I always return to that exact spot and ask it if it remembers me from when I was 11.

its_me_in_montana said...

The first time I read your post, it sounded very negative and maybe like a mid-life crisis.

I worked for 25 years in police departments. Seemed no day was a routine. I enjoyed the work. Wanted to be the police since the show Mod Squad. I would love to make furniture, create things.

My best day since I moved to Montana was the day I stacked wood in a wheel barrel, and walked it the length of a football field, then walked up several stairs to stack the wood on the porch. I made the trip 45 or 6 times. That was what I figured a good day in Montana would be (besides visiting heaven).

Sounds to me like you are getting ready to make a major "jump" Sir Fram. Good luck, and smile.

Fram said...

Hi there, Montana ....

I just enjoy being melodramatic .... remember, all the world is a stage. I do agree that I am ready for another jump.

Working around the coppers isn't always exciting, but it sure provides a variety. I can see your point.

By the way, when I saw the topic of your last post, I just quit reading it and moved on. I've been through that a couple of times, and didn't want to think about it. Sorry.

its_me_in_montana said...

Fram, don't be sorry. I guess that is akin to if you don't like the program, change the channel. I had wondered why you didn't comment. Although I have noticed you don't always comment.

I once read a description of Siberian Huskies, and it gave a list of why someone wouldn't want one. All of those reasons, were the reasons I did want one. He was a smart dog, and would like my face to keep me from playing a flute I had bought. He did however like my singing.

Something special ....