Haunting Thoughts …

imgres“Then in the Arctic half-light of the canyon, all existence fades to a being with my soul and memories and the sounds of the Big Blackfoot River and a four-count rhythm and the hope that a fish will rise. Eventually, all things merge into one, and a river runs through it. The river was cut by the world’s great flood and runs over rocks from the basement of time. On some of those rocks are timeless raindrops. Under the rocks are the words, and some of the words are theirs. I am haunted by waters.”

Ending lines from the Robert Redford Movie … A River Runs Through It.  This and other Stories is a semi-autobiographical collection of three stories by author Norman Maclean (1902–1990) published in May 1976. Continue reading

Do Over


Let’s pretend for a second here, that we could be something, anything, we want to be.  That we could radically change our present circumstance to anything we want it to be, to be able to change our present status in life to something totally new and different.

To be the NEW you that YOU want to be.

If given the chance, a vast majority of us, would do it in a heartbeat.  This might be why a large segment of the population in this country relate so well to Hollywood and movie personalities.  It gives us a little chance to live vicariously thru other people (actors and characters) for a short while and escape the rigors that modern day life has to offer.

Let’s face it, most of us live lives of quiet desperation.

We all secretly wish to be someone else, to be something else, we are as the younger generation puts it a bunch of  …. “Posers.”  We make a mental note each day of things we want to improve, things that we want to change, and yes, people we admire and want to be.  We are so bad at this, that an entire industry was formed around the very idea of the quick note.

During my career on the railroad we had a select group of people that followed us everywhere we went.  They were armed with cameras and radio scanners, they knew just about every aspect of our working lives.  They didn’t do it, they just thought they knew everything about it, they for lack of a better word, studied every aspect of our daily duties, our career.

They were also quick to tell you that they were “rail buffs.”  We on the other hand, called them “Foamers,” because each time they saw a train, they kind of went all glassy eyed and freaked out.  The sight of GP35 or a SD40 took them over like a rabid dog, thus, the term “Foamers.”


Rail Buff At Work

This is just one example of a poser … someone trying to be something else, a person living thru you.

In the bus community (people who own and restore old buses) have a term for it, those folks who dream of owning a bus, who want a bus, they are called “wanna-be’s” and those folks new to the lifestyle are called “newbies.”  They even have folks residing with them that do not own a bus, but still consider themselves bus people, fact is, I don’t know what to call someone like that.  Hopeless Dreamer comes readily to mind.

One very popular show on television is Extreme Home Makeover.  A very popular television series featuring a new abode, with brand new stuff, and of course, higher taxes. Who amongst us hasn’t secretly pined for a shot at that.  Those of us who sit around during the slow part of the day and dream of castles in the sky, a new place to hang our hat. (Hey what the ____ it beats working right?)

Then there is the movie thing that we seem to be obsessed with.

A movie that quickly comes to mind is Somewhere In Time.  The ability to go back in time, to a much happier period, perhaps one less stressful, where you do not have to dress for success.  That special niche in time where you do not have to kiss a part of the boss, the part he sits on most of the day, in order to get by.

Face it, most of us don’t need any of this. We don’t really need another chance to be something that we are not, because that would waste the unique individuals that most of already are.   What we need is a do over.  Perhaps one more shot at the now dead American Dream.

Having ample time to stop and consider my present station in life, I have come to one solid conclusion about all this.  I don’t favor Robert Redford, another Dustin Hoffman I am not, there is only so much room for industrial hero’s like Donald Trump, Warren Buffet  (the ultimate train buff) or Lee Iaccoca.  In other words … Don’t waste a makeover on me, that is a total waste of time, I am what I am, pretty much locked into that.

No need for a Make Over here … What I really need is … A Do-Over … one more swing at all this, and I promise Lord, this time I won’t screw it up.

OOO

Moment of Truth

This morning I am reminded of that old movie with Robert Redford where he is “The Candidate” do you know of which movie I am referring to here?  It is all about his running for the office, the long hard arduous trip to the prize, an office in Washington DC … A senate seat.  I am thinking not so much about the body of the movie, but the last scene.  Where he is sitting in the hotel room, he has won, and he looks at his campaign director and he says to him …. “What now?”  And the campaign manager says, “Figure it out, you are the Senator.”

So I wonder …  What is Mr. Obama thinking about this morning?

Another great day in history has passed.  On election day history is always made.  1842 … Abraham Lincoln married Mary Todd.  1869 … the First issue of Nature was published.  1922 …Archaeologist Howard Carter discovered the entrance to King Tut’s tomb in Egypt.  1924 … In Wyoming, Nellie Tayloe Ross was elected the first female governor in U.S. history.  1960 … Filming wraps up on The Misfits, the last movie for both Clark Gable and Marilyn Monroe.  Fast forward to 2008 … Mr. Obama becomes the first Black Man to become President of the United States.

History is made on election day.

It is almost as if we have been embroiled in the greatest novel of time for the past twenty-two months.  A page of it at a time slowly revealed to us, albeit too slowly in my case.  And like the OJ Simpson scenario, Rodney King, Watergate, we were slowly sucked into it.  Opinion surveys, robo calls, voter registration totals, survey after survey.  We were drawn into it like a Moth to a lite bulb almost to the point of being outright consumed or obsessed with it.  Now we seem to be standing at that point in time, where the book isn’t quite finished, we are standing at the final chapter, the future, and we know not how the end will come about.

There I suppose lay the mystery.

Barak Obama has spent over $250 million on local, cable and network television convincing us that he is the man for the job, he is up for the task.  But we also know that politicians are the same all over, they promise to build us a bridge, when we can clearly see there is no river.  He has spent more on TV ad’s than such giant brands as Burger King, Apple and The Gap.  He is in the cat bird seat now, and that is fine, but the honeymoon only lasts for a short period, ask Sarah Palin.

He will soon discover that a lot of this garbage is locked rigidly in place and he has a full plate before him.  What he has to deal with is a massive mess left to him by the Bush Wrecking Crew and a very hostile and shaky world to deal with at the very same time.


No easy row to hoe.

Personally I am glad it is over, I am free of it, and now I can collect my thoughts, and get back to other things that are driving me nuts.  Like e-mail.  I am so sick of being a slave to my in-box, I have to really do something about that.  I made a folder the other day, I labeled it “Cartoons” so I could unclutter some of my clutter.  So like the fool I seem to be, I put ALL OF MY BOOTLEGGED CARTOONS the really good stuff in the folder to store for sometime in the future.  That is what a folder is for, isn’t that correct?

Today I go to use it, guess what?  Yeppers, the folder is gone and the cartoons too.

So for starters, I am going to step away from the e-mail box, I am going to get the first things first stuff out of the way, and then read all this “pass this on to every person you know in the entire world” emails.  I am going to give it time and not leap to answer everything that I find in there.

Having convinced myself that this is necessary to good mental health. Not thirty minutes ago I killed the alert feature and now I am not disturbed or distracted by this constant beep!  You have mail!  I can wait to respond, especially to those massive mass e-mails.

The best, the absolute all time winners on e-mail was one that arrived in the box earlier on in the year, during the spring.  Nothing much about it was special except the last line … At the conclusion of the informational missive was this profound statement:

“If you do not get this e-mail let me know.”


Recently I have even learned how to lie about my whereabouts.  Fortunately, e-mail systems allow you to “create an outgoing message that says you’re out of the office.”  Which is cool, you can use it to give yourself an e-mail break.

Like this for instance: I am not actually writing this, this is being written by Don’s refrigerator, Don is not here, he took a break to go to the drugstore for a refill on his Prozac and a new blood pressure monitor.

Hump Day for a five day a week wage slave In Oklahoma … Hang in there … You almost have it made.

000

Moment In History

This morning I am reminded of that old movie with Robert Redford where he is “The Candidate” do you know of which movie I am referring to here?  It is all about his running for the office, the long hard arduous trip to the prize, an office in Washington DC … A senate seat.

obama-perplexedNot so much the movie, but the one scene at the end, has my attention.  I am thinking not so much about the body of the movie, but that last scene.

Where he is sitting in the hotel room, he has won, and he looks at his campaign director and he says to him …. “What now?”

And the campaign manager says, “Figure it out, you are the Senator.”  So I wonder …  What is Mr. Obama thinking about this morning?

Another great day in history has passed.  On election day history is always made.  1842 … Abraham Lincoln married Mary Todd.  1869 … the First issue of Nature was published.  1922 …Archaeologist Howard Carter discovered the entrance to King Tut’s tomb in Egypt.  1924 … In Wyoming, Nellie Tayloe Ross was elected the first female governor in U.S. history.  1960 … Filming wraps up on The Misfits, the last movie for both Clark Gable and Marilyn Monroe.  Fast forward to 2008 … Mr. Obama becomes the first Black Man to become President of the United States.

History is made on election day.

It is almost as if we have been embroiled in the greatest novel of time for the past twenty-two months.  A page of it at a time slowly revealed to us, albeit too slowly in my case.  And like the OJ Simpson scenario, Rodney King, Watergate, we were slowly sucked into it.  Opinion surveys, robo calls, voter registration totals, survey after survey.  We were drawn into it like a Moth to a lite bulb almost to the point of being outright consumed or obsessed with it.  Now we seem to be standing at that point in time, where the book isn’t quite finished, we are standing at the final chapter, the future, and we know not how the end will come about.

There I suppose lay the mystery.

Barak Obama has spent over $250 million on local, cable and network television convincing us that he is the man for the job, he is up for the task.  But we also know that politicians are the same all over, they promise to build us a bridge, when we can clearly see there is no river.  He has spent more on TV ad’s than such giant brands as Burger King, Apple and The Gap.  He is in the cat bird seat now, and that is fine, but the honeymoon only lasts for a short period, ask Sarah Palin.

He will soon discover that a lot of this garbage is locked rigidly in place and he has a full plate before him.  What he has to deal with is a massive mess left to him by the Bush Wrecking Crew and a very hostile and shaky world to deal with at the very same time.

No easy row to hoe.

000