Coming into work today I was sitting on the bus listening to music when I was suddenly near overwhelmed by a wave of sadness and grief.
I don't know what bought it on. I was listening to the Four Seasons “Let's Hang On” and idly wondering how come this tune was such a huge hit (number 1) when I could only get a glimmer of what the song was about when I suddenly just felt the pressure behind my eyes and the sadness come rolling in.
I just let it roll. That's what I do. It passed quickly but gave me no clue as to what bought it on.
It certainly wasn't the music - its old. I've heard it several times before. It has no significance for me.
Speculating on what could produce such a profound effect seemed counter productive so I let it pass. The moment I let it go I remembered a 12 foot wave I once caught at Rincon several years ago. It was a totally tubular ride. In my memory I could hear Maggie, one of my dogs, on the beach barking because she was mad that the surf was too big for her to swim out to me, as was her custom.
Funny thing; the mind. I wondered if this meant I was going nutsier, or was just a sign of being old and diseased or some such. Maybe I was turning into a Southern Belle out of a turn of the century dime novella.
I figured I was all wrong about that stuff. I couldn't afford any of that. I have to keep working.
I missed my puppy. She and I bicker but we love each other.
I notice that she spends at least an hour a day demanding pets from me. She always needs to know where I am, sort of like a mother and child and best friend all rolled into one.
My best friend today decided that I was home sick for LA. Gave me pause but its not right. I loved being raised in LA. I loved living there until it became just another big dangerous city. The LA I loved still exists but it is buried beneath the 21st century. Where I live now isn't the best in many ways, but at least its keeping me alive.
I'm really sick right now. My puppy is curled at my feet and my foster puppy is staying as close as my puppy will allow him. I'm glad I'm alive and I'm glad its nearly Christmas.
Maybe I am homesick. I don't think much about myself except when I have to. Then I just analyze. If I am homesick its not for an old home its for an old time, a time that won't ever be again. The only constant are the ocean and the surf.
My home is with my puppy and with our friends and I still have friends all over the world. I can't ever be homesick.
Technorati Tags: california
In karate, particularly shotokan karate, you practice a single move at last 1,000 times in succession. The theory is that you grow fatigued and in that fatigue the non-essential muscles that work the hardest in a punch or a kick will exhaust themselves to the point where your doing the move effortlessly, which is the goal. New insights also say that this metabolic style of working out also increase and trains the nerves forcing them to adapt and react more quickly.
1,000 times to the point of exhaustion and then practice a different move 1,000 times.
For most of my life people have assumed I'm an existentialist. I think they mean it in the Camus and Sartre mode, if so I am certainly not. Camus was at least a decent writer but Sartre, I always figured he was good with a certain type of woman.
I'm too stoic to be that sort of existentialist.
I'm also too enamored of humanity to be a Keirkengarden style Existentialist.
Really I think its a lot of fuss about nothing and all I really am is a decent friend.
Running on nerves and illness this week, just preparing for the big day.
I'm also spending a lot of energy trying to help find a home for the dog who has been squatting here.
He's welcome but its painful to watch because he'd be so much happier in his own home.
Funny, in a woman or a man the overwhelming need to love some one is undesirable, and when you're the misjudged target it is annoying and often frightening. But in a dog, well, some say, not me, that it is their greatest feature - the overwhelming need to love someone.
I like dogs. I like that they don't have conditions and don't fault you for being inconsistent.
I like dogs.
I have to ride the bus to work and then home, both ways in the dark. I get to see some Christmas decorations and I like that. I like the cheap and cheesy with equal fondness for the classy and over priced.
Christmas decorations always stir up a plethora of memories, most intensely personal. One of the oddest ones is they always bring at least a flash of Elvis Presley. And the thought process always leads to the fact that Elvis earned something like $60 million in his lifetime but when he expired he only had about 200,000 in cash - no huge stock portfolio, no secret Swiss accounts or blocks of slum apartments. (It was Priscilla who masterminded the Graceland/Elvis mega empire after he died.) I like that and all that it implies about the man.
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Another dog is living with us.
Its a rescue dog and only here until they find it a new home. Means can't get too attached.
This little guys has had a life already - dog pound for two months then two weeks with someone who was going to cherish him forever.
Two weeks ain't a whole lot of cherishing.
Back in the '30's there was a criminal named “Farmer John” Mecurio. I only remember him now because he was the real one, the real guy who started a whole cliche.
Farmer John took down banks and payrolls, most of the time single handed. Now a days its hard to imagine what that meant.
His work was going into heavily guarded places and facing up to a half dozen or so armed men and walking out with the money and his skin. That he was big and tough enough to do this over and over again says something. He was 6'5“ and 265 according the the San Quentin records. You wouldn't forget that even today, back then when the average height was 5'7” he must have seemed a giant.
When they busted him they charged him with 52 banks jobs, 34 payroll jobs and sundry other crimes.
They liked to pile it on back then.
They called the guy Farmer. It was a popular nickname back then, for reasons I can't begin to understand. Farmer John was a dandy, dressed in the finest silks and shoes - man his size had to have all his clothes custom made or else wear overalls. He had one major weakness. It lead to his capture.
He'd robbed a payroll in Long Beach. To escape with the money he had to ram the shipping yard guard house barricade. He got through it but his car was riddled with sub machine gun fire. Even though John had some home rigged armour on the car a bullet got in and nicked his dog, a large German Shepherd.
With the traditional “Calling all cars” APB on the air they surrounded Farmer John's vehicle at an animal hospital about 3 blocks from the robbery.
Farmer John was there getting his German Shepherd treated. To the cops surprise he surrendered peacefully saying only, “Don't hurt my dog.”
One cop made a playful menacing gesture towards the dog and found out John was sincere. The handcuffed criminal jerked the cop off his feet and broke two of the cops ribs and his jaw before the other cops could pull him him free.
The vet, a Dr Cary Leeson, told the papers that John had pulled in and said his dog had been shot in a hunting accident. The only thing that caused the vet any concern's was that John was not dressed for hunting. John was deeply and seriously worried for the dog's well being.
When the cops called for him to surrender John pulled out a big revolver and said, “I should take you hostage Doc. That wouldn't be right. My boy going to be okay?”
When the dog was treated and well was when John surrendered.
The newspaper boys played the story up big. Since then there have been hundreds of stories and movies about the hardened sociopathic hoodlum who still had a spark of love and decency in him, at least enough love to care for a dog.
Even Raymond Chandler wrote a short story about him, but in Chandler's story the crook gets gunned down but the dog survived.
I liked that.
It seems John had always had dogs. He had his big Shepherd with him because it was his plan to head straight to Mexico for a little R&R. He didn't take a floosie. He took his puppy.
I liked that too.
That a man big enough, tough enough to take the world and shake it by the scruff of its neck, a man who inspired a myth, even if he was not mythological, that he existed is enough for me.
I couldn't hang out with the guy. What would we do? Play fetch with our dogs and smile. And if complained that I was having a hard time coming up with the rent he'd offer to take me along on a $50,000 bank job at the 3rd National? something easy to break me in . . .
So I'm glad I'm a foster parent to a dog.