Wednesday, May 26, 2010

One Would Think...

... that having a family would ground me and make my life more regular.  Pshaw.  I have to get up at 5:15 tomorrow.  I was winding down around 9.  A couple of paragraphs of Adam Gopnik's piece in this week's New Yorker was going to do the trick.  But.  (Not very surprising that there's a but as it's now just past midnight and I'm blogging rather than sleeping.)  But our four-year-old decided that she had to cuddle daddy in his bed.  Then she couldn't fall asleep.  Not through all of the Gopnik article.  Or the Roddy Doyle story.  Not even through the interminable piece on Afghanistan.  I finally gave up on the article with more "Taliban's" in it than all the articles I've read since 2001 combined.  I find reading about modern conflicts stultifying.  I was an avid reader of war stories and histories as a kid.  I love the military, political and social histories of all the American wars, including Vietnam and Iraq.  But for some reason stories of the Middle East bore the hell out of me.  Same went for Bosnia and all the Nicaraguan and El Salvadoran stuff.  Though Joan Didion's book Salvador was pretty readable.  Maybe what I find intolerable about those regions is the hopeless futility of their conflicts.
Anyway, I'm at war with the clock.  I have a long day of shooting tomorrow and I'm dog tired but wide awake.  There's a little redhead sprawled in the middle of our bed and I couldn't lie there wide awake any longer.
I went to look at bikes today.  The Guzzi is out.  Too small for me.  I fell in love with a black, white and gold Bonneville T100.  I almost bought it.  I felt that fear creeping up in me - what if they sell it?  Even though he told me they only sell a couple of each Triumph model a year.  Beautiful bike.  More so in person.  I thought I would like the British Racing Green option, but the black and white one jumped out and grabbed me.
Overall, life is really good right now.  I have more and more job prospects coming my way now that I've committed to producing.  Rather than rushing in, I'm taking my time setting up meetings with people to see where the best place for me might be.  I love the freedom of free-lancing but there are a couple of in house gigs coming up that might be a good move for me.
Other than that I'm in search of quality chambray shirts, preparing for trip to Bend to see Band of Horses and She & Him.  I love Matt Ward but I'm not so keen on Zooey Deschanel's voice.  It works on some of their songs.  I'm sure she'll be very charming live. 
I love Bend.  Not so much the town itself, but Central Oregon.  When I was a teenager I had this vision of myself as a lonely dustbowl refugee.  Not so much by style or disposition, but by pedigree in some naive literary fashion.  I loved Fitzgerald and Hemingway and so desperately wanted to be of their ilk - a super combination of urbane Ivy Leaguer and macho adventurer.  I see now how contradictory the two were.  Nonetheless, as much as I was drawn to those expatriates of the Lost Generation I was truly more kin to Steinbeck's disenfranchised Westerners.  I felt a little trapped and resentful by the smallness and the hopelessness of their lot.  Still, the quiet lonesomeness of the high desert and the plaines appeals to me.  More as I get older.
I am really grateful that I'm from Oregon.  It may not be New England or New York City or New Orleans or San Francisco or any of the great American lierary cities and regions, but it sure as hell beats anywhere in the Midwest.  Which is whence both Fitzgerald and Hemingway hailed.
I visited the Finca Vigia in Cuba about ten years ago.  Hemingway may have hailed from the midwest, but he was a citizen of the world.  His place outside of Havana was amazing.  I could easily imagine his presence, both from the property but also from having read everything he wrote several times.  It just made perfect sense.  His writing is very visual for me.  And he's so present in all of it.  I feel almost childish, puerile to be sure, in my appreciation for him.  Though I don't buy the great man, Papa mythos wholesale.  I see the pain and suffering, especially as he aged.  I take pity on him, which is probably what drove him  to take his life in Sun Valley.  My father was born in Idaho.  And lives there again now, last I heard.  My father won't shoot himself though.  More stubborn than proud.  Cowardly and bitter.
So this is one hell of a meander.  I think I'll try to get to sleep now.

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