Nine. Twenty-seven. Sixty.

July 29, 2012 § 19 Comments

At nine, my body was an embarrassing collection of ill-matched parts and motions. Skinny. Uncoordinated. Awkward. I would have hidden all of myself behind my back if I could have, not just my hands.

At nine, I sensed that I was either invisible, or the center of the universe. No one saw me. No one saw anything but me.

I was never sure which was worse.

At nine, this body of mine did nothing particularly well. I could not cartwheel, or run fast, or walk with grace. I couldn’t even whistle.

Although to be fair, I was not bad on a bicycle.

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The one thing we have in common.

July 21, 2012 § 4 Comments

I was out for my morning walk.

He was out for his.

“Nice and cool this morning,” I said, slowing just a little.

“Be some rain after a while,” he said, slowing too.

“That’ll help keep things cool,” I said as we passed each other.

I could have said, “Your dog’s been getting out a lot again lately. I know he’s not a biter, but he’s kind of scary.” I could have said, “Where do you get all that trash you heap up in your front yard?”

But the purpose of an early morning encounter is peaceful agreement, the exchange of a quiet benediction.

Our acknowledgement of each other may be as brief as a nod.  But if conversation is traded it will always involve the weather.

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And the river flows…

July 12, 2012 § 6 Comments

The idea put forth in this post has occurred to individual humans over and over. It’s been enshrined in world philosophies.

But the truth feels most true when it knocks on your door.

When the knock came and I answered it, a neighbor was standing there. He needed twenty bucks to have enough to pay for a pain prescription.

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The world is made up of just two kinds of people…

July 4, 2012 § 19 Comments

We like our truths simple these days.

Can’t Tweet it in 140 characters? It’s obviously too complex.

It’s either black or it’s white.

It’s good or it’s bad.

Like the old song says, “don’t mess around with Mr. In-Between.”

So I offer the following simple organizing principles for dividing humanity into “us” and “them.”

“Us” would be the side of the equation you agree with, “them” would be the fools who disagree with “us.”

You may choose only one. Choosing more than one would imply that nuance still exists. It doesn’t.

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