A gorgeous autumn day. The Soundtrack to Amelie plays over my CD player, Starbuck’s French Roast is in my coffee cup, the sky is overcast, and I am sitting at my desk in the hopes of putting some sort of entry down on LJ. I’ve not done so in a while and more than anything else I miss my friends on LJ. To casually dismiss some of the people on my friends list as faceless entities on the web would be a great understatement and dis-service. I miss the snarky one up in B.C., the jazzy one in Chi-Town (Cubbies in first place!), the sensual enigma in, where now… Boston?, the kickball techie out east, the UO student with her cat Linus… these and more.
I’ve been away for a while and I do not know where to begin. Life has changed so much for me, the pace altered, the focus shifted. Last night, sitting near Eliza, her eyes looking up at me… it seemed to me that I could not remember a time when she wasn’t with me. The years alone seem like something I saw on a television show… a memory but not real. She has been living with me for a bit over a month now and we’ve had wonderful days and not so wonderful days… all the things to be expected in a relationship. We’ve a new addition to our household… a baby squirrel. I was out hiking Sunday and while walking back home at a brisk pace (I wanted to get back to Eliza… I missed being near her) I suddenly got the urge to stop. I stopped at the Palmer Bridge, a small wooden bridge spanning a seasonal creek winding through an oak savannah. I read the plaque telling how Palmer and his family and friends built the bridge on his 60th birthday and I just breathed the air and looked around at nothing and everything. Then, without reason I looked down at my feet. There on the bridge was a curled up baby squirrle with it’s eyes still closed. I thought it was dead until it moved and I carefully scooped it up into my hand and brought it home. It didn’t seemt to have any serious injuries at all. The next two days has seen us, (90% Eliza) caring for the baby squirrel, hand feeding it, and wiping its butt so that it will poop.
I’ve been doing better at the club. My patience has worn thinner as there are only so many times you can give someone who is irresponsible the benefit of the doubt before you demand behavioral proof of their abilities. But aside from that I’ve improved on a couple of fronts and have fallen on a few others. Eliza has expressed concerns that I’ll stay at the club for a while. If she could feel the dread that I feel every time I walk to the truck to drive to work she will know that this job is not a permanent thing. In fact I spent the money for an application fee for the University. I also applied for federal student money (loans and grants) and I am planning on following up this week with check-backs for my application at the University and a re-order of transcripts from my last two universities. I’ve started to get the money that I need, though I deserve more in my opinion, and I’ve made strides in paying off all of my debt. In fact, aside from my continual ordering of books from various book clubs (a large expense which I just started and am not willing to give up just yet) I have but one more payment on a large debt and my credit card debt which is only $300 and I am good to go. Compared to my position last December I am in remarkable shape. For the first time since I’ve lived in Oregon I have transportation, housing, steady job with dependable pay, no back rent to catch up on, and most of my bills paid off, all at the same time. I understand that my job is a lousy job in an environment that I hate, but I would like to be in better shape to leave the job than I have for the last four jobs that I’ve quit. I sincerely and desperately want to be in college in January and quitting my job now before I found another one would only delay my college for who knows how long. But I go to far in this thought, for I don’t think that Eliza is as bothered by my job as she purports, but that her distress is symptomatic of deeper issues, connected perhaps to the various emotional states she is in from time to time and the need to understand why one is in such a state, and her own concerns with various issues (gender roles, sexuality, relationship questions and so forth). My vision for my self in the future has me surrounded by books, not drunks, drug dealers and dancers. I am working toward that vision and I can see my progress toward it. I can remember many baseball games where the team rallies in the late innings to win the game. But for much of the game the team was down by many runs. But to look at the team in the early innings to see their attitude… theirs was not one of giving up… but in the faith that in a complete game, a full 9 (or more) innings, they could win the game, even though the first couple went sorely against them. Such is my faith in my own game of life. Some innings I strike out, some I get on base, but in the last inning I believe I’ll come out with a win. That is because above it all, (sometimes more, sometimes less) I have the desire to live a purposeful life. A person can find purpose in life even if everything around him is meaningless. To believe otherwise is to give up the power of one’s own life over to the forces acting upon us, making them the agents of our life’s happiness and not ourselves.
I must leave for work now. Eliza is going to stay home with the squirrel and nurse him back to health. She is doing a wonderful job with the little beast, and I must admit that it is very cute. And while she is home doing this, I will be at work, herding dancers around the club, on stage and off stage, keeping drunks in line and everything else in order. But while I am doing such, my mind will be playing in its mind dreams of a possible future, a future of me on campus, studying brains, asking the big questions, and more. Without the ability to dream we are nothing more than what Skinner said we were, a Stimulus-Response black box seeking pleasure and avoiding pain. But we are more than that… I am more than that. We are endowed with creativity, intelligence… the ability to look at our surroundings and say to ourselves “this is not as I want it to be” and envision a future yet unseen… and make it so.
Make it so.