Sunday, January 14, 2007

years end & begin

Socked with a cold and concerned (if selfishly) about aging loved ones and times gone by, I'm not sufficiently grateful.

Not for my health (such as it is, getting back to normal). Not for being only middle aged (and alive thus far). Not for my wife or family or friends who love me. Not for whatever questionable qualities or abilities I may be said to possess. Not for the basics like food and shelter and clothes to wear.

No, I'm too busy being mopey and sad and wondering where everything's all about to slip away to. Mourning actual family who died (see Del Parrott entry below) and numerous famous people I never met but who nevertheless made my life better.

Ah, hell, let's list some of them:

James Brown (the man who made the latter half of the 20th century far more interesting)

Gerald Ford (one of few public figures my dad & I agreed on)

George W.S. Trow (author of In the Context of No Context)

Grant McLennan (songwriter/co-frontman from the Go-Betweens, a life-changing Aussie band you may or may not care about)

Peter Boyle (actor in too many good movies including Young Frankenstein and Taxi Driver)

Yvonne DeCarlo (as this is not a 2006 recap per se, the actress who played both Moses' wife and Lily Munster can easily ride with this pack)

I know more names will come to mind.

Kind of the point: Thinking of the dead means not communing so much with the living.

Well over the hill am I, if one figures the midway point in one's life as some peak from whence one careens ever downward. But not so far as to be too terribly old. Or for that matter, dead.

We (royally used here to mean "I" and invoked hopefully to mean "all of us") want to love what's lost and hold it close and dear in remembrance. We also want to breathe, to live awhile before we ourselves are lost & found only in another's recollections. Sentiment can weigh upon the simple functions of living.

I love ideas about "real simple" living that inevitably include a photo spread and captions and prices for all this real simple stuff. Real simple in my maudlin year's end/year's beginning sitch may mean remembering just long enough to smile and say goodbye to everyone and everything lost.

When we're done crying, we can all practice:

Smile and say goodbye.

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