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November 14, 2009

Look Of Me
Saturday. Up before eight, to bed last night reasonably early, although I don't remember quite when it was I dozed off. A drive to breakfast, though: no mood, no thought to walk. A bit cold, I was thinking, lots of clouds, some water on the streets from a light shower, who knows if there won't be another one? Easy enough rationalizations, no need to take them any further.

A similar take on the world now that I'm back. It looks like whatever it was is breaking up, the tail end of a storm and not the leading edge, the sun coming through a break in the clouds as I write, the day ahead probably a good one once we get it started. Getting started seems to be the problem anymore, me and the weather, please turn up the heat.

Later. A struggle to convince myself I wanted to go out before finally leaving for the bus stop, the air cool but the sun warm. Ten minutes waiting for the bus thinking, it's nice out, why was it I wanted to go downtown again? Oh, right, not downtown, but to the café across from Sears for coffee and some of those chocolate muffins and then hopping another bus out to Telegraph Avenue by the University.

Why Telegraph Avenue on a bus to the University in Berkeley? Isn't that strip more than a bit depressing after these many years? Wasn't it always? And isn't this sun rather warm and this air nice and crisp as I stand here, bus ten minutes late? Too long, I decided, so a walk down through the Saturday farmer's market (sunshine brings out the crowds), a walk farther along Lakeshore on a similarly crowded sidewalk to Noah's Bagels where I shot a picture and had coffee with an apple pastry of some kind at a sidewalk table, an amble back then to the apartment, taking time to sit in the sun on one of the new benches they'd put in place this last week at the end of Lake Merritt.

Now I do understand. You're sitting out there wondering how can I fit so much excitement into a Saturday morning in Oakland. Well, it's not easy, let me tell you. It takes resolve, a camera and cranial inflammation. Well, for me it takes a camera, for you it might take a parachute or scuba gear. Believe me, I understand.

That's enough.

I know, I know. It is a nice day though, at two in the afternoon. Maybe I will take that bus later and have those chocolate muffins. Hup! Hup! Well - hup! hup! - it sounds like another feeble get out the door routine. And it is. I do get out the door, I enjoy getting out the door, it's just, well, I don't need to write about it, or think about it, and certainly not fret about it. “Cranial inflammation” was chosen with a bit of the tongue in cheek, but only a bit, and chosen because, well, I suppose you're never sure.

Later still. An attempt at a nap, but to no avail. Obviously not up for another walk, although there's still time left in the day. Hungry, but I haven't been able to figure out what I'm willing to go out and buy. No reason to complain, although I've now dropped under a hundred and seventy pounds. I assume this weight loss will stop when the pounds and calories come into balance. At some point? I could lose more, I'm still carrying something of a spare tire, but my guess is six feet at, say, a hundred and sixty is as low as a man should go. I'm making that up, but the idea of a hundred and sixty is blowing my mind. Still, back to reality, what kind of food do they sell here in the neighborhood? There's most every kind, fast or slow, hot or cold, young or old. What's not to like? These are not questions I've ever had to ask in the past.

Just come out and brag, asshole. We know your kind. Thin without spending a nickel.

I've never seen it happen this way before. I've been this light, but only after a struggle. It was the stomach operation that seems to have messed with the appetite. Yes, I'm happy to be lighter. I'm happy the old Halston jacket I bought thirty years ago fits me again (although it looks as clunky and ancient as the guy in the mirror wearing it) and I'll stop with the “please stop knocking on my door, Ms. Monroe, you're giving me a headache!” routine. Weight loss and “Marilyn come asking”, one of them long gone silly, one of them still with us from the look of me. Deedle-dee-dee.


The photograph was taken of Bruce Beasley's Vitality (2002) standing near the Oakland City Hall (in the distance on the right) with a Nikon D2Xs mounted with a 17 - 55mm f 2.8 Nikkor DX lens at f 5.6 at 1/500th second, ISO 100.