Tuesday, January 27, 2015
Looking forward to a home-stand, and some walk-off wins
When I was growing up, I remember being fascinated by the idea of whether you could see the horizon on the other side of a wide river or bay, or whether you could “see through” a tunnel (particularly on the Pennsylvania Turnpike on multiple family trips to Ohio in the 1950s), or even on bicycle trails (like Paw-Paw along the C-O in Maryland, or in Sparta, WI). I talked about this in particular about the ferry acros the Chesapeake Bay in a Wordpress posting here.
Seeing “the horizon” is an important idea in work. On November 2, 2014, I outlined a large number of interrelated projects that I want to finish now. I can see the “shore”. (Perhaps it’s feeling “the air of another planet” from the vocal part of Arnold Schoenberg’s Second String Quartet). That list is still pretty much the same.
To focus on this work in the next three months or so, I need a “home stand”. Yes, I need that last at-bat in the bottom of the ninth inning, the walk-off win opportunity. I need to avoid too many distractions, “watching my back”, etc. Customer service, when I pay for it, needs to come through properly. Infrastructure needs to hold up (like Internet access). So I don’t need the interruption of picking and packing up to go out of town a lot during this period. I don't need the distraction of contemplating disruptions caused by negligence or the indignation of others. And this seems a bit uppity or insular: I don't need unsolicited sales calls, or "complaints" that I don't work in a "numbers ruled" environment the way others "have to". I do "get it". But I have to lay these existential challenges aside and finish what I started.
Let me re-iterate: it is extremely important to me to prove to myself that I can produce a worthy novel manuscript that doesn’t become obsolete (like an earlier one in 1988 did because of the end of the Cold War), that I can produce a screenplay that really does justice to my books; that I can produce a non-fiction autobiographical video (edited properly in Final Cut or equivalent),
Since the passage of my mother at the end of 2010, I’ve gone back on the road more often: Charlotte, Minneapolis, Mt. Washington NH, Dallas and other areas of Texas, southern CA and Las Vegas; the Great Lakes (even Detroit); the Whiteface-Adironacks area; The NC-TN Smokies and Oak Ridge: then the civil rights landmarks in Alabama, as well as areas from Nashville to northern MS. Some of these trips get pushed back and postponed because of one complication or another, but get done.
In early December, I had intended to visit Disney World (Epcot and the Mars vovage), and Diagon Alley at Universal. I had even made some hotel reservations, intending to drive the 1700 miles in 8 days. (Another friend did just that between Christmas and New Year’s). Because of a particular last-minute complication, I did not go. There was no financial cancellation penalty, but I don’t like to do this. I intend to set this up for around the first of May. I also would like to get to London and to Finland the first half of this year, after this “home stand” in which I should finish the work. The postponement of the car trip south will also let me pay a significant visit to Fort Jackson, SC this spring, including a visit to the Basic Combat Training museum, significant earlier in my life (in 1968).
So what does this mean for getting into taking care of others? Well, I have to stay on my own track for a while, with as few interruptions as possible. I do understand that there are some things that should be expected of me for the attention I “demand” (to quote a third grade teacher’s report card, post measles). I’m in a house bigger than what I “need”, so it ought to provide for more people. That takes work and preparation. (What if the asylum issue really does materialize?) And, as I’ve noted about volunteerism, I’m not much into other people’s bureaucracies, which are getting more demanding even in volunteer areas (posting Jan. 18). There is some point to getting people to fit into them, as this gives the less “lucky” a reason to believe they can get a fair shake from civilization.
Second picture: "Back to the Bay". That means something "in the Army".