It’s About Fucking Time

22MAR08 – Getting on toward the end of yet another journal, one that has taken me across most of the state of Alaska, through Brisbane, Australia, before terminating in Washington, D.C. That’s the purpose of the thing, I suppose. Ever onward. Change, the only constant. For better or worse, hell or High Water.

The meaning of life is; trying to hold on to all that we hold dear for as long as humanly possible, all the while hoping that the end doesn’t come too soon. The meaning of life is; to fill one’s life with enough experience to understand in some small way what it means to be alive in the first place.

Sitting at the yellow table in Misha’s, sipping a large triple-shot soy latte, watching the endless possibility of human faces go strolling past the big window…

(A woman standing in line has such a terrible handbag that I can’t bear to look in her direction. I’m relieved when she buys her coffee, runs outside and climbs into a waiting car just as the light turns green…)

(A man in a wheelchair with a painfully quiet voice asks me for a light. I almost didn’t hear him over the sounds of ‘Dub Trio’ in my headphones. When I tell him I don’t have one, he maneuvers his gadget around and asks the back of an unknowing stranger who can’t hear his request over the blaring din of the 1940s. I stand up, clear my throat, and broadcast the request for him. Startled eyes blink back at me from across the shop like deer in the headlights. Oh, dear. Seems I’ve frightened the herd… I manage to locate a pack of matches in the bag slung across the back of his chair and help him light up, arranging the large brass ashtray just so before him…)

I can’t believe I’ll be 37 soon. Who’d have thought it possible? Somewhere inside, I’m still 9, still 19, still 29. Had a moment yesterday where I experienced what it was like to be ‘me’. I could understand for an instant that I was living in this body, making hands my move, making words with my tongue, manipulating a pen into concepts, and listening to the stupid things I say in an attempt to be charming or sophisticated.

Listening to ‘Host of the Seraphim’ by Dead Can Dance. If only scientists could find a way to pry open this song and let me live inside it. If only the landscape didn’t end at 6:17. If only I could crawl inside the breath of angels, drink water from the rivers and walk on the land. That’s a lot of ‘if only.’ Sometimes a song is so good you never want to see it end and when it’s over you want to hear it again for the first time, but you can’t. You can’t go home again. You have to call it something else.

Still so much I want to do in this world… what’s it like to fly a bush plane over the Serengeti plains, watching elephants fuck and lions eat slower animals? What’s it like to leap off a perfectly good bridge with nothing but a long rubber band tied to my ankle? What’s it like to spend a week in wintertime Iceland with the woman I love, soaking in the hot springs and drinking peppermint vodka as the Northern Lights dance overhead? I aim to discover some if not all of these answers. I refuse to believe this is all there is.

I like coffee and the Devil drinks tea.

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