Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Golden years, gold, wop wop wop

It probably would be a safe wager that David Bowie had other thoughts than those present in this post today when he wrote the song, "Golden Years." But, who can say for certain and, besides, the concept of "golden years" means different things to different people, just as the definition of "success" has varied interpretations. This is a nonsensical post. (Perhaps, they all are.) It came to me the other night that I wondered what it would be like to sleep in a bed again. (That was, anyway, a portion of what I was thinking.) Then, my mind began to drift, and the words below emerged. When you have read them (I guess that is assuming a great deal), you might have a better idea of why I live alone. It is not just the concept of home decorations. To the contrary, my own belief is that a house, with the exception of one, lone room, is the domain of the woman (if/when there is one) who lives there. The lone room, of course, is for the man who lives there to hide within. The greater concept is finding a woman who either is willing to travel with me (and to sleep wherever we are when darkness falls .... I am laughing, are you ??) or who enjoys being alone much of the time when I am in a wandering mood. And, yes, I know the bottle in the photograph is Benedictine and not brandy. The brandy is in the kitchen where I pour my drinks and ice is at my finger tips.

Of what use are beds ??

Someone once looked me in the eye, smiled a soft smile and said: "You live in a house of books, brandy and bullets, but no beds."

I had to agree, and to compliment my smug attitude of the moment with words, I replied: "I am a practical man. I only buy what I use."

I have not slept in a bed since the winter of 2010. Reflecting on the subject of beds (to what ends, I do not know), I have spent much of my life sleeping on floors or couches or reclining chairs. In a more esoteric and descriptive sense, I have slept on sandy beaches, rocky deserts, on ships and in canoes, on aircraft, in trees, on snow on ground and on ice on frozen lakes, on piles of leaves in forests, in wheat fields and jungle grass, in cars and trucks, in battlefield gullies where men have died in recent wars or, sometimes, in old or even ancient wars.

I spent a night on a rocky, mountain foot trail with portions of my body going downhill in three different directions. The trail was going up-mountain, with half my body on one side of the trail at a sixty-degree, downhill angle and the other half of my body on the opposite side of the slope at a sixty-degree, downhill angle .... my rifle tied to me by the shoe lace of one boot and my remaining gear tied to the shoe lace of the other boot to ensure it would stay with me should I tumble off in my sleep. I slept well; I loved it.

There was another occasion when I fell asleep in utter darkness on a moonless, starless night with my upper body on a muddy riverbank and my legs still in the river. It seemed like a good idea at the time. No need to shower in the morning; just push backward and resume swimming/drifting with the current.

I have always been able to fall asleep anywhere within two or three minutes and to set my "internal alarm" to awaken me whenever I wish, unless I am in a state of virtual exhaustion; it comes in handy.

Well, there are a few more places where I think it might be interesting to sleep before I enter into "the endless slumber," but, I wonder: Of what use are beds?


Smareis said...

Oi Fram,

Gostei da coleção de livro, a imagem é curiosa e cheia de interrogação. Não achei seu post sem sentido, achei interessante. Fiquei curiosa com um objeto em cima dos seus livros, parece uma cobra, rindo aqui. Essa garrafa parece um vinho, é conhaque, brandy.
Na verdade é bom comprar somente o que se usa.
Aqui já é uma da madrugada, não tenho a menor ideia que horas é ai. Estava com um sono mais essa musiquinha do vídeo me despertou. Gostei muito dessa música do David Bowie-Golden Years Lyrics.
Maravilhoso viver cercados de livros, os livros são uma grande companhia, eu adoro ler, e não sei se viveria sem música e livros. A leitura de bons livros é uma conversação com as mais honestas pessoas dos séculos passados.
Dormir em sofá não é tão ruim assim, mais uma boa cama faz toda diferença.
Acho que depois de você ter dormido em tantos lugares, acredito que uma cama nem ia te fazer falta (rindo)... Ou nem ia acostumar dormir mais em cama. Essa é vantagem de viver só.
Eu sou muito difícil para dormir em qualquer lugar, demoro muito a pegar no sono, qualquer barulho me atrapalha, tenho o sono muito leve. Por isso sempre vou dormir na madrugada porque é mais silencioso e consigo dormir melhor. Eu me satisfaço com poucas horas de sono, desde que seja bem dormida. Gosto mesmo é de dormir quando esta caindo uma chuvinha fina, parece que tudo fica mais tranquilo e melhor pra uma boa noite de sono.

Adorei a postagem Fram
Ótima semana!
Ótima viagem!
Fique bem!

Fram Actual said...

You have been busy writing here while I slept, Smareis. I sat down with a book to read in a cushioned, seventy-nine-year-old chair. I drifted into sleep unknowingly, and when next my eyes opened, it was nearly three hours later. The chair, by the way, was not from my immediate family, but from another with ties to my family. Someday, I will explain its presence here with me now.

The books in the photograph are about one-half the number I have which revolve around George Armstrong Custer and various U.S. Army cavalry units between the late 1860s and 1890 during the period of the Plains Indian Wars; the liquor is Benedictine; the ammunition is a small variety of shotgun, rifle and handgun rounds; the pistol is a Colt Model 1911 in .45 caliber. Combined, they represent the dominance of books, brandy and bullets which, alongside me, occupy the house. We all are part of each other to make up the whole, in a sense.

The object atop the books which made you curious is a Norse or Viking arm ring from Scotland. A number of years ago, I wanted to buy a bloodstone ring. A woman I knew who owned a jewelry shop in Tennessee was going to Scotland on a combination vacation/buying trip. Scotland is known for its bloodstone. I asked her to find a ring for me there. She did, and I purchased it from her. Then, she gave me the arm ring as a gift. It is the head of a dragon which you see as a laughing snake. I do wear it from time to time.

Ah, yes, sleep. I am a night owl, too, and have often said my soundest, deepest, best sleep comes in the hour or two after sunrise, although in my instance, I attribute that to primitive genes.

You sleep lightly. My former wife slept lightly. I was afraid to roll over because it would awaken her. I sleep like a log, or a rock, if you prefer, and I can fall asleep outdoors in the brightest sunlight as easily as in the darkest room. Things out of the ordinary, though, sounds in particular, seem to trigger an alarm in me and I awaken. Again, the primitive genes.

Incidentally, the time showing on my posts is Central European Time. It is seven hours later there than what it actually is when I am at home in Minnesota. The computer was there, in Europe, when it was new, and I have chosen never to change the time for that reason.

A final thought for now: My mother read to me and taught me to read. Life without books would be my concept of hell.

I thank you, Smareis, very much, for your thoughtful comment. It is fascinating to me to read your responses to the ingredients of my post and, from them, to learn more about you as an individual.

You, too: I hope your Wednesday and the rest of your week will be all you hope them to be and more .... take care and stay safe ....

Anita said...

Nice post Fram!

But ..You cant get any woman without any proper bed!Teasing!Hah!

Who cares what we sleep on as long as we sleep!

But there is a point..What a bout our backs?It will ache in sometime living without a madrass..

I think every man is looking for a woman that reminds him of his mother..ohh yeh they love the teasing ones..beautiful onnes..teeny weeny ones.But when it comes to who shall bring their babies out in the world..They choose someone they can trust. One that is not more handsome then they (jealousia)They prefer a quiet life.Boring family life...In the end..Thats what I think!

Working as a unproffesional midwife in my early life ..I often wondered why some of the handsome men always bound to ugly woman ..(not really ugly but common girls)..and the beautiful girls..almost was alone..Strong, independent..Well well questions questions.Who cares any more..I think love is overated..Its much more other things to think of..Like things in Ferguson..Ok Fram..Ialso wish you a great day..Kiss kiss on the cheek!

Fram Actual said...

I think you have a good understanding of life, Anita.

To paraphrase some lines from a film:

"You are a beautiful woman."

"No, I am just very pretty. There is a difference, you know."

There is. There really is a difference. Just as some men actually are "pretty boys" and others actually are handsome and most actually are like the rest of us -- sort of ordinary -- there are differences.

I have written any number of times that truly beautiful women frighten me. They really do. I become awkward and clumsy, like most men do, probably, in the presence of a truly beautiful woman, and I do not like being awkward and clumsy. Beyond that, I enjoy being with a woman men look at, but I am the jealous type (as John Lennon wrote of), so my hackles go up when a man stares at the woman I am with and his mouth is hanging open; I might create a scene. It does not help that I like to fight .... well, more once-upon-a-time than I do now. So .... anyway .... I usually chase the "very pretty." Then, too, we all have varied ideas of what features appeal to us, and there are times for me when "cute" trumps "very pretty."

My first wife was "very pretty;" my second verging on "beautiful." As for a wife who reminds a man of his mother, I read "Oedipus" in college and depart from there to looking for similar qualities. In the sense of qualities, your point probably is true. Again, I would mention the reading in my own experience. I think a mother (maybe, the father, too) should be reading to a child every night before bed.

Closing on your first sentence, I wrote somewhere else earlier this evening that I am a dinosaur, old-fashioned in many respects, that I have been since I was a boy and, undoubtedly, always will be those things. I think every woman does deserve a comfortable bed -- and a wolfhound or a deerhound at the foot of it who follows her commands and not those of her husband: Sic simper tyrannis, or thoughts/words to that effect.

But, as a note for your last sentence, love is a curious thing, I think, and I am not at all certain I will ever understand it. Being able to talk together about anything and everything might be the most important element of a relationship, I think.

I wish you a good Wednesday, too, Anita, and I hope you will find a bit of weather-luck to lift the rain clouds from Bergen. Thank you, for coming to see me and leaving your words and your kisses -- even if the kisses were on my cheek .... teasing ....

A Cuban In London said...

You ruminations are wild, but I detect a metaphor for settlement. Hence the "drifting" bit towards the end of your post. I guess that we have all felt the same - I would call it - itch.

Just watched and watched again and partly-watched David Bowie's Virtual Tour (I'm not sure of the name 100%). Wow, I mean, his voice is just stronger and the geezer still looks the part, dresses the part and acts the part. Life on Mars never sounded as beautiful as in that concert. I might even post a clip from the concert I saw on You Tube the other night.

Greetings from London.

Smareis said...

Fram então, agora eu sei o nome do objeto que estava em cima do livro. Norse ou Viking um anel da Escócia. Pareceu-me uma cobra por isso perguntei, sou bem curiosa.

Eu tenho sono muito leve, acordo com qualquer barulho por pequeno que seja. Isso é genético minhas minha família também dormem pouco. Sou um pouco coruja da noite. A vida sem livros, sem musica deve ser muito triste.

Ótima semana Fram!

Fram Actual said...

My reflections on nights without beds summarized a few decades of life and living for me in a sense, CiL, beginning with teenage years and Christmas vacations hunting and camping in snow/ice caves or on frozen lakes; to Marine Corps days on mountain trails with my lifeline in the form of a shoe lace connecting me to my rifle; to road trips and canoe excursions and beach parties and you name it -- from here to there and everywhere, never really thinking twice about daring to do anything, much less worrying or being fearful about where I was or what I was doing. Those were my "golden years," and they are going, going .... well, maybe, not quite gone, but the days of swimming down the middle of rivers are no more. Sooner or later, we shall discover what remains within the realm of the possible.

It appears David Bowie's "golden years" are continuing yet today, based on your description of the concert you watched.

Thank you, CiL, for your visit and your comment.

Fram Actual said...

There are different types of dragons (seriously .... well, at least in literature), and some do look like snakes, Smareis, so it is logical a dragon might seem to be a snake. These arm rings were worn for decorative and symbolic reasons, and were a good way for a person to carry his wealth with him in the form of gold or silver. My arm ring, unfortunately, is made from pewter.

My trip today was postponed because of bad weather, so I am at home for the rest of the week. There are times when it is necessary to travel in a snowstorm, but today was not one of them. My angel can take a few days off from watching over me now.

Thank you, for coming to visit me again today, Smareis. You have given me a reason to smile this evening.

Bitch said...

Interesting post my dear friend Fram!
You are a lucky man sleeping wherever your foot or path takes you...

Thank you so much for stopping by!
Sending you a good night sleep with
good vibes (probably on your floor) !!

Fram Actual said...

Greetings, Monika. It is nice to see you again. I have missed your visits here and your posts at your blog.

My "talent" for sleeping here and there and anywhere comes from Norwegian and German ancestors who gave me a tough, healthy genetic foundation and an attitude problem.

Thank you, for your presence and your comment today.

P.S. I have moved from the floor to a love seat in recent weeks, and sometimes have been using a lounge chair which dates to 1935. No matter which it is this night, I shall sleep well, thank you ....

Something special ....