I had that epiphany yesterday that the end of my insanity is around the corner. Two weeks from now I will have passed the hardest, biggest test my job has to offer in its academic year. And then I will feel like a god. Until then, I’m hanging on, keeping to myself, and fighting the good fight.
Yesterday I finally took my bike to work. I threw it on the bus and only cycled a couple klicks in the morning, but did the whole ordeal on the way home. The sky was heavy with clouds and that five-minutes-from-raining scent lingered on the air. Just as I was getting to the dykes, I thought about the fact that I had my camera and wasn’t taking many pictures in the last two weeks. I stopped, pulled it out, and set a challenge to take 20 pictures in the next 20 minutes.
That’s when I noticed this wharf that had previously been obscured by big low-lying trees along the river’s bank. Just as I stepped foot on the planks, juicy raindrops began splattering the boardwalk before me.
My iPOD hit upon a fresh song, the Detroit Cobras’ “You Don’t Knock”* and found myself doing a little twist as I walked down the wharf, completely alone out there. And then I remembered a quote I found recently at work:
has never danced in the rain.
And the rain was falling, so I began to sing and dance out there at the end of the wharf, overlooking the river, the airport, and all the planes coming and going. It might have only been a 2.5 minute song, but I shit you not… it did more for me than any swath of personal time I’ve had in the last few weeks.
It’s hard sometimes getting past the “I’ll look stupid” paranoia that finds us all, but in the end, I’m the one with the shit-eating grin. And that reminds me of a quote on my refrigerator: “I find that smiling keeps people guessing what I’m up to.”
Anyhow, it’s back to the grind. I just wanted to share. Personally, that was the thing I loved about myself between 18 – 22… I used to do things like that for the hell of saying I’d done them. And I loved it. Somewhere along the line, I stopped that voyeuristic, indulgent approach to life, and in that I lost my ability to feel truly individual. In the last year, I’ve begun remembering how much one has to live out loud to live at all. Can’t just think about the things you wish you do, but you gotta actually do them.
Sounds so stupidly simple that only a human could possibly fuck it up, eh? Thinking: The human’s curse. Doing: Not just for Nike anymore.
*The Cobras are a post-punk low-fi pop band with a great mix of ’50s and garage sounds. Infectious, great groove. The lead singer was a butcher turned exotic dancer, with killer pipes. Been around for years and never went far, but I’ll stand by the recommendation. An old coworker got me hooked.