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Today at the pump

The Sole Prop's Sister?


Under here.

March 8, 2010

Birthday circa 2010
Pisces (February 18 - March 19): Venus and Saturn conspire to raise the ante where money's concerned. We're talking both personal checking account and funds you share with others. You long for security, but that doesn't mean your love life isn't fantasy-driven. Take the high road as you wait for an emotional whirlwind to settle.

Monday. That's Minerva's entry for the week, taken from Sunday's Chronicle, and I figured since this is my birthday, I should run it as she's been pumping now for months the year is a Pisces’ year to end all years and I've been going with the flow. Don't you know. I can't see how this particular one comes at all close to my current situation, but what the hell, who really knows one's own current situation? A fantasy driven love life? That's about right, not much else going on otherwise, but the finances seem fine for a Monday in March in the middle of a Great Recession.

Hmm. I've had 2009 instead of 2010 up top displayed as the year these last two months (now corrected). My, my. Proof positive this fuzzy headed thing I've been talking about is real enough when it comes to proof reading at least, in noting changes in the year, the decade. Not the first time I've made this mistake: I had 2009 on the journal page for a while in January until Rien pointed it out. That, you'd think, would have given me a head's up to check for similar problems. Maybe no one else noticed it, nice to think so, but I doubt it.

Such is life at sixty-seven. Sounds pretty close to seventy, doesn't it? Seventy? Me? If you'd asked twenty years ago I'd have said I'd be dead. May still be in three years, dead that is, but we'll not obsess over that, fuzzy headed I, no reason for any of that nonsense when there's so much else to think about. Obsess about. In this life.

This is what you talk about on your birthday?

Age, death, money, love. Kind of covers the bases, doesn't it? What else do you find in a horoscope? Love and money, certainly. Not much else. Well, work, embarrassing situations, social disruptions, planets on a collision course. For all my talking about horoscopes I know little about them other than Minerva was good at catching my attention in projecting a great year ahead. Any year is a good year in which you're able to get up in the mornings and tie your own shoes, I suspect. I'd be touting the Farmer's Almanac if I owned a copy and it too was projecting good things for 2010: success with the wheat crop; a rising water table in the south forty; good prices on the hog market. Whatever it is they write about in an almanac. We're all farmers at some level as long as three hot's remain important in this life.

But let's get back to the day, the morning starting well, the papers read, breakfast digesting comfortably, Ms. Emmy here on my lap as I write. I haven't been paying attention to this birthday business, it took me an hour to remember the fact after getting up. Sixty-seven. Not that much difference from sixty-six, don't you think? Of course my father was dead at fifty-six, his father before him dead at thirty-nine, the one due to cigarettes and similar such, the other due to diabetes and rumors of alcohol. The family was pretty much mum about it. The family, I recall, was pretty much mum about everything, not something I thought about at the time having no way to put it in context.

My grandmother divorced and remarried early on and it had an impact on my father's life, something we learned slowly, in small bits and pieces, divorce something you didn't do or talk about in those days without approbation, so I never met nor knew nor know much about my grandfather on my father's side. The family was originally from Denmark in the 1850's, although I've learned there's a relatively well known Revolutionary War general and some other interesting folks that melded into his line. Or is that family myth? Hard to know. Hard to tell. Not every myth turns out to be true.

The prominent New Yorker in the male line who married a nice Jewish girl at a time when prominent New Yorkers didn't marry nice Jewish girls? Good to hear that. Kind of settles the family foundation somehow, a ticket into the American experience. A big deal back then, evidently; today who gives a shit? Particularly on this coast?

So at sixty-seven what's my story been? Up and down, here and there? Never married, never even thought of having children, never understanding the emotional underpinnings of a “close knit family” existence. Is that why I've been fascinated by these Korean soaps that harp and dote and obsess over family obligations in a culture where I assume such obligations are necessary for survival on a not nice planet? Or am I just the product of a time and place where survival doesn't much depend on family resources and support? I think not, given the support my own family has given me throughout my life, not inconsequential by any measure, even if I haven't thought about it much.

A life lived apart, lived comfortably apart, lived examining one's navel, perhaps; one's little quirks, one's minor aches and pains? All that's true without being of much importance, I think. If I think. This first day of my sixty-eighth year.

Pictures today? Wouldn't surprise me. Birthday pictures of some sort? Nothing I've thought about this early in the day, something might come along to make that happen, although for the moment I can't think what a birthday picture might look like. A self portrait of some kind? Eating cake? Raising a glass?

Later. A bus ride downtown taking a picture of a naked tree against the clouds and sun, a walk here and there thinking, well, I'm hungry, I didn't eat all that much for breakfast, it's my birthday and I can justify doing or eating anything I might want, what do I want? A cup of coffee at a coffee shop of no great renown, a mocha something or other pastry to go with it, which was OK; a bus then back to the apartment passing an interesting scene at Broadway and Grand, home now thinking nap. The Hurt Locker is playing down the way later this afternoon, maybe I'll go see that.

Later still. This day will end with a nap and then another nap, I suspect. I went to the theater and sat through the first twenty minutes of The Hurt Locker before thinking, well, I don't need to watch any more of this (no reflection on the movie, it seemed quite good, just not what I was wanting to spend an afternoon watching this day) and headed back (for another nap).

The head a little rocky in the “hallucinatory episode” sense I must admit, sitting there in the theater chair, that may have influenced my cutting out. A light episode, but an episode none the less, with a nap as antidote. It's now past six and I think I'll watch my ongoing never going to end Korean soap and then go to bed. No complaints. Could it have been that cheese sandwich I had after I got back from the downtown walk, finishing off the baguette I'd bought yesterday? Bread and cheese was obviously not what my body wanted on a birthday, circa 2010.

The photograph was taken at the San Francisco 2010 Chinese Lunar New Year Parade with a Nikon D3s mounted with a 70 - 200mm f 2.8 Nikkor VRII lens at f 5 at 1/100th second, ISO 640.