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November 16, 2010

Skipped The Lesson

Tuesday. Up at six, off to breakfast and back now somewhat later than usual after eight, the papers having taken somewhat longer to read this morning. Interesting stuff happening in interesting times. I can understand why people are made nervous by the speed of things changing all around them, loss of control creating unrest, loss of their house putting them out on the street. Still, hard to see how even all this can create so much bizarre behavior on the political scene. I haven't been immune and getting my own mind around this last decade has neither been easy or particularly successful. It's as whiz bang here as it is anywhere else.

Other than new and rapidly changing camera technology, what else do you even think about?

Now, now. I do remember the Vietnam years, having lived through them (emphasis on lived), Watergate, three assassinations that jolted our moorings, the end of the Cold War, the brave and hair raising invasion of Grenada, but I don't recall any of it as fundamentally disturbing as what we're seeing now.

I'm pretty sure this means I'm seeing things differently, as opposed to the world itself having changed, and everything in my past was every bit as strange and weird as any of it may be today (with the possible exception of Facebook, iPhones and the Internet). Maybe you wear blinders when you're young, blinders to help keep your head down, grab the bit in your teeth and slog on. Because there's nothing to compare it to when you're going through it the first time? I suspect I'm in outer space here, but I wonder if I'm not alone, others my age wondering at the world and where it seems to have gone?

As in the oceans are rising and we've run out of oil?

As in I started this and it rapidly got me well in over my head by about the second sentence. All from reading the papers this morning.

I need to get to the lab today for a series of blood tests: one, the monthly “is the blood thinner I'm taking working as it should”, but also the annual cholesterol measurement and a bunch of other stuff I've collected from my various medicos this first half of the month. A good way to get in the daily walk, though, heading to the lab. Other than that, nothing unusual today unless the results come back with something other than a thumbs up.

You get older, you forget getting older moves you into scary territory, the days getting both more laid back and more “interesting” at the same time. Like getting on a skateboard or a bike at the top of a hill. Adventure ahead, more so as the speed increases and we approach the bottom. (Apropos, this is one of the cousin's kids. There's more than one family lunatic out there doing off the wall stuff. And enjoying it.)

Do you compare your own sedentary existence with this youngster's achievements?

Perhaps, but when I was, as she is now, young. You don't take your chances on the mountain now, when will you ever? Except, perhaps, when you're retired. Not that I've shown any glimmerings of progress. Just, you know, talking.

Later. Ah, the cholesterol test. It says something about “fasting” on the prescription, as in skipping breakfast. We did not skip our breakfast this morning, no we did not. So, a bus downtown to pick up a renewed prescription instead, a snapshot as I was approaching City Hall, a walk then down to Jack London Square to have another one of those Ben & Jerry's waffle cone specials, coffee ice cream this time, a walk back all the way up Broadway to Grand before catching a bus home. A reasonably long walk when you add in the detours searching out and photographing another door (or two).


Antsy today I'd say. Clear headed, the upper palate acting up for a while there, but getting out easily enough to poke around with more ambition than I've had in the past, but otherwise - I don't know - antsy. I think a drive up to Napa to photograph the town is in order. It's been a long time. I'll do the blood tests tomorrow at seven, get breakfast at eight, take my guitar lesson at ten and head for Napa at eleven. Hmm. Maybe Napa the day after tomorrow. I can't think of anywhere here in the city I want to go. A trip out to the end of one of the BART lines? To see what's there? You can see my dilemma. I'm here, don't want to be here, don't want to be there.


An urge to have sushi and sake later this evening, sake being the magic word. You get antsy, you think of taking a trip or taking a drink. Best not the two together. Taking a trip, I can go with that. Not sure about the drink, though. It's not the drink that gives me pause, it's the urge. Why? Why when I'm a bit antsy? Why am I antsy? Increased energy and such are supposed to be good, right? Right? Did I miss the obvious, skipped the lesson everyone else long ago learned?

The photograph was taken at the the Mehserle trail sentencing demonstration in front of the Oakland City Hall with a Nikon D3s mounted with a 70 - 200mm f 2.8 Nikkor VR II lens.