Sunday, January 19, 2014

You can run, you can run.

What I Have Been Doing Instead of Running:
  • Staying warm
  • Time with family
  • Work
  • Reading
  • Writing
These last two are key. I made a “New Year’s Resolution” for 2014, which is not something I traditionally do. There’s so much humor to be found (ha ha ha) in not keeping your resolutions, I thought as a young person they were pointless. Resolve to do what you mean to do when you decide it is necessary, arbitrary dates be arbitrary.

However, the new year coincided with a new desire, a deeply felt desire, in conjunction with an already recently established commitment, to wit;
  1. Read just before putting out the light.
  2. Write upon waking.
I have been writing, in long-hand, most mornings since October. The habit of writing, the very necessary habit of writing -- one which I possessed in the past, but lost -- has been hindered by the internet. Before the internet, I just wrote. Before I had a laptop with wifi, I just wrote. Access to the internet, virtually everywhere, has provided endless distraction.

The new rule is that my laptop is not permitted in the bedroom. I write on an honest-to-goodness stenographer’s pad, with a pen, every morning. Even when there is nothing to write, I write. And lo, there is something to write, and I am writing it. I have no idea if it is good, and that is a good thing. I am always so confident when I am writing, and often without cause. It is good to be unsure.

Reading, however, is the other important component. The internet has been a distraction from reading, and I should be a voracious reader. I can be, I was as a child, and in fits and starts as an adult. Reading before bed, it’s simple, and much more effective at lulling me to sleep than drinking.

The other day I completed The Tender Bar, and then I began Bring Up The Bodies. Memoir. Historical fiction. My wife and I had an interesting discussion after seeing Inside Llewyn Davis. She is not a fan of non-fiction, as it instills an artificial sense of order, or fate even, upon an unfair world. We only read about success, rarely if ever failure, and where this failure, there is always a reason.

One of my father’s favorite books is The Last Place on Earth, an excellent document of man’s race to the South Pole. Fate! Hubris! Success and failure, neatly explained. One of my favorites is Into Thin Air. My father and I like books about cold places and death, apparently. I digress.

Inside Llewyn Davis, which we both enjoyed (curse you, Academy) chronicles a story not told. We have seen Walk The Line and Ray and all those movies which describe the inevitably of success. These men were geniuses, in spite of their faults. Of COURSE they would become icons.

But, whatever. I like non-fiction. Perhaps they merely reinforce the Great Man theory of history. I see the thin ice upon which all decisions rest, and how all the preparation in the world cannot protect you from complete disaster.

Temperature: 23°
Pavement: thin layer of slippery snow
Distance: 3.25 miles
Weight: 176.5 lbs.

Seriously. You can't run west on Monticello without face gear when the weather is freezing. Why can I not remember this? I thought my face was going to harden and crack.

1968 Playlist
Magic Bus - The Who
Folsom Prison Blues (Live at Folsom Prison) - Johnny Cash
Sympathy For The Devil - The Rolling Stones
Grazing In The Grass - Hugh Masekela
Everybody's Got Something To Hide Except For Me and My Monkey - The Beatles
Street Fighting Man - The Rolling Stones
Take Me in Your Arms (Rock Me a Little While) - The Isley Brother
Crossroads - Cream
Hurdy Gurdy Man - Donovan

The boy has been enrolled at School Of Rock. His instructor wants him to get acquainted with four, seminal rock bands with awesome drummers -- The Who, Jim Hendrix Experience, Led Zeppelin and Deep Purple. He's also supposed to bring in a song of his choice to practice, and he chose Tempted by Squeeze because this is my son.


beedie said...

I like nonfiction. I find biography in particular disheartening. This could be a neurosis.

pengo said...