Masochistic Perceptions, Trials and Truths

These are my cyberfied cerebral synapses ricocheting off reality as I perceive it: thoughts, opinions, passions, rants, art and poetry...

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Life Observed

Yesterday I met up with a friend at a local café who I hadn’t seen in nearly twelve years. We are both 38 now, so it’s interesting to see someone after such a long period whose mental image is one frozen in their mid twenties. That being said, she looked fantastic and had hardly changed. More interesting is how one feels that they can pick up from where we left off without the slightest sensation of discomfort. I have a few friends like this whom I might only see every couple of years, yet there remains a closeness forged in our youth. I think that defines a true friend. In any event, she lives in the same city as I now and I hope that she will become a bigger part of our lives.

In an hour or so I’m heading over to visit another friend who had prostate cancer surgery a short time ago. When we were setting things up over the phone last night, he shared with me that the seriousness and extent was larger than previously thought, but he’s taking it in stride. The whole thing makes me sick with worry, not to mention angry as hell. Here we have a man ten years older than I, former triathlete and still very physically active, non-smoker, etc. and he has to endure this. Fairness is a human invention, so lamenting that life is not fair is a waste of time. It’s just frustrating to see someone doing what appears to be all the right things and getting sick, while you look at others who abuse their bodies silly and are old folk – look at Mick Jagger or Iggy Pop for starters. I know that I’m redundant in saying this, but carpe diem!

The Lowest of the Low really hit the nail on the head: “The chance is just as fat/ as a union bureaucrat/ that the life you wanna live/ ain’t the one you’re lookin’ at”.

As for me, I’ve still not made any choices as to what paths I’m going to pursue. Still thinking about packing in Boxing, but, then again, I’m thinking about sticking it out until Spring for fitness purposes, then having a go with a local Gaelic Football club. I’ve always wanted to play Gaelic Football, and, after watching highlights on the Internet of the International Rules series going on right now between the best Irish Gaelic Footballers and top Australian Aussie Rules players. As my years advance, the odds of ever fulfilling these ambitions diminish – my knees are shot and my shoulders aren’t in their best condition.

I have made some inquiries pertaining to classical guitar lessons with the local Classical Guitar Society. I must say I’m more keen on playing traditional Celtic music, but feel going the classical route will provide the necessary foundation for this. I can play basic chords and have a fairly broad folk repertoire, though my singing is better left in the shower. My biggest obstacle would be learning to read music and finding the time to practise. We shall see how this particular avenue develops.

Rock Climbing is another sport that I would like to take up. I tried it once a few years ago when at a retreat with my literacy students a few years back. There is a local rock gym, and I think if I could bring my wife and wee one on board, it would be quite a positive family bonding experience. The cost is probably our biggest obstacle, especially if we elect to bridge out from climbing walls and into the Rockies – a mere three hours away.

Life is so bloody short. I am amazed at some of the things that folks get pre-occupied with on this very brief journey. I’ve learned two things through the two friends mentioned earlier on in this missive: (1) live every day as if it’s your last and (2) friends are the most important thing in life. Material possessions mean sweet fuck all. Life is all about what you experience – emotions, people, memories. To quote William Shatner off his “Has Been” cd a couple years back: “Live life/ like you’re gonna die/…because you’re gonna”.


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