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at the end of the day you're another day older

At night when I'm standing at the bathroom sink watching myself in the mirror brushing my teeth, I think about how only 24 hours prior I stood there doing the same thing, and what have I done between then and now? Sometimes I'm crushed that all that time has gone by and I've nothing to show for it. Sometimes I reflect on a day well spent. Sometimes I lament the quick slippage of time, regardless of how I filled those 24 hours.

Then I think of Buddha. Well, only now have I thought of Buddha when I was surfing the 'net for an appropriate quote and came across this one:
Do not dwell in the past.
Do not dream of the future.
Concentrate the mind on the present moment.
So much of what I do is repetitious: brushing my teeth each night; waking in the morning and shuffling out to the kitchen to put the kettle on for coffee; walking the same path with my dog Cassie and the same music on my iPod; driving Jack to school, then backtracking myself to work; emptying the dishwasher; folding the laundry. Even right now, wracking my brain for something to take down here: how many times before have I done this?

None of that matters, really, because here I am right now. Here I am clacking at the keyboard, sprawled on the sofa with Kismet curled against my legs, Jack snacking on pizza on the living room floor while watching Monty Python Season 1 Episode 7 for the fourth time because it's so funny. There's no reason to lament anything, nor even to reflect on anything. The lamentation and the reflection are part of my story, building blocks of who I am.

It doesn't matter that I've done this countless times previously. What matters is my Self, the person who does this now, is not exactly the same person who did this before. Did I pay attention to what happened between now and then? Not always. But I can pay attention right now.

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wotd: temporize

temporize \TEM-puh-ryz\, intransitive verb:
1. To be indecisive or evasive in order to gain time or delay action.
2. To comply with the time or occasion; to yield to prevailing opinion or circumstances.
3. To engage in discussions or negotiations so as to gain time (usually followed by 'with').
4. To come to terms (usually followed by 'with').

It's easy to tell yourself that you'll write a daily blog entry using the word of the day from dictionary(dot)com as a prompt, and equally easy to temporize your daily entry by waffling over what to write about, or evading your obligation by procrastination. There. Bedtime.

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40 observations on the eve before my 40th birthday

Indulge me! In no particular order:

1. I love making pinatas. I've made a pinata for Jack's birthday for the last five years. The Death Star, a jellyfish from Spongebob, Patrick Star from Spongebob, Plankton from Spongebob, and just this year King Pig from Angry Birds. I've been commissioned by a friend to produce another Angry Birds Pig pinata for her son's birthday. I'm gonna do it.

2. Right now three of my ten fingers hurt when I type. I don't bite my nails (unless one is already broken) but I do pick and pull at my cuticles. I've developed acute paronychia, a bacterial infection, at those three finger tips. The one that hurts the most is my right thumb. Space bar hell. I've done this to myself since childhood. When I'm pulling and nipping at a hangnail, I know it's going to hurt but I go ahead and do it anyway.

3. I consider myself substantial: in body and in mind. I am robust. I have zeal. I just don't have any confidence.

4. My brain stop…