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The Energy Hath Runneth Dry

February 23, 2013

I’m feeling kind of lazy today. I knew that the highest highs I felt earlier in the week would end eventually and that I need to have a contingency plan. So here it is: veg all day and hopefully tomorrow I’ll feel a little bit better. However, today I’ve felt fairly lethargic. Maybe it’s the weather or maybe it’s my sleep or even maybe it’s that natural ebb and flow you always hear about, but arrogantly suggest you have no ebb nor flow–there is just me.

I’m feeling so lazy today I’m not even typing on my computer, but from my iPad. Yep. I’m one of those. I think I may go to the gym later and wake up some, but in the eventuality that I don’t do that and I don’t write on here for the rest of the day I’ll leave with a thought:

As I was laying in bed at 2am last night I had a memory–a flash of a past that seems so long ago. I remembered the time when I was 8 and my grandmother used to take me and my brother to the dollar movies and we saw The Witches and it exposed me to my first anxious thought: what if my parents went away or died and never came back. I don’t know why that was such a strange concept for me because I had already been exposed to loss once before.

With that it was just a grandmother and as horrible as this may sound, her death wasn’t an immediate act on my psyche. Maybe it’s because I wasn’t as close to her as I was with my parents. Sure she babysat me and we had family gatherings, but she didn’t live with me and I never had a chance to be as attached to her as I was with my parents. Anyway, I remember the boy losing his parents and thinking about what if I lost my parents and how horrible I’d feel.

I still think that way as they’re older now and how gut wrenching it will be when one of them–as the movie so cutely put–goes away. And that thought fills me with more horror than I dare say to anyone directly. We’re all like that, though, we know that this life is finite and to enjoy it while it lasts, but there’s a certain unfairness to it that I think just hit me the wrong way as a little boy: why does anyone have to go away? I still get sad about friends I’m no longer friends with. Shit. Death is a million times worse. That means you’ll never see them again but in vague recollections that fade with age and occasionally spring up from time to time, but your memory isn’t perfect and your recollection of them may not be perfect.

Your friend that kicked you in the shin on a bad day may become the hero in a memory or more of a villain than they ever were when they were in your life. And your family may be more perfect than the perfectest thing that ever perfected. That’s the real tragedy of memories and loss; you skip the boring stuff and remember people in their idealized form even if they weren’t so great.

So, that anxiety of loss after viewing a stupid movie seems so childish now, but the fear that day–as it is now–is very much real. Some day we will experience a great loss and we won’t know how to deal with it. Hell, whenever I hear of a relative dying or a relative of a friend dying the best I can do is say, ‘I’m sorry,’ or, ‘You have my sympathies.’ As if either of those are truly comforting to the bereaved. It’s that inadequacy, though, that makes us human and allows us to know that we’re still among the living. That some shit will hit us like bricks, but we dust ourselves off and keep on going.

In other words: thank you Roald Dahl and your horrible vision of reality, you made my childhood a slightly worse, but realistic place. I don’t know if that was sincere or not. Consequently the movie adaptation of your book did introduce me to Rowan Atkinson who has been a great influence on my sense of humor and what’s good comedy. So there is that.

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