Thank you to everyone who mailed or commented with advice, it was universally good and well-meant and I shall be taking most of it, even the contradictory bits, he said without irony.
Life is an advice machine, isn’t it. If you include “lesson” under the general heading of “advice.” Maybe it’s the buy a red car, see how many red cars are suddenly in the streets thing.
Or in my case, the drive unpredictable beaters and see how many cars break down on the road when the weather gets good and cold, as it is today thing. I was murmuring prayers of thanks, general delivery, on my way to work today that I have a dependable new car at the moment. That made me wonder who, exactly, I ought to be thanking. God? Life in general? My wife and me for living within our means so that we can afford a little Mazda? My children for not developing any expensive habits or problems, except for the harp thing and the going to a school where they take trips throughout the continent all the apparent time thing, which you can’t really get upset about thing?
At any rate, I was glad the car worked because it’s chilly out.
Earlier this morning I sat down at my kitchen table to eat some uncooked oatmeal because
- I can’t be arsed to cook oatmeal in the mornings and
- I like it better that way
and there was this magazine there with an article about relaxing and taking a different approach to time and stress, which was right up the alley of various things we are dealing with at our house at the moment thing, so I read it as I had my reading glasses with me, and but it was longer than I had time for so actually all I read was the sidebar thing and it had a list of, you guessed it, advice in the form of things to try and I cheered myself up with them.
How I remember the list of advice given in the article:
- Think about the person you want to see in the mirror when you shave in the morning.
That would be Scarlett Johansson in a plush bathrobe going on about what a fun guy I am, except there is something unreal about her, not exactly fake although her lips sometimes make me wonder, but something unreal, especially if I were seeing her in the mirror in the morning, I’d question my sanity more than usual and have to turn around and check, am I just seeing her in the mirror or is she really there in my bathroom and she’d be all, “what? What, Mig?” and if she was just in the mirror I could just run some cold water over my face and swear off the absinthe but if she was there in the bathroom I’d be all, sshhh, don’t wake anybody and everything sort of unravels from there; moreover, I’d actually rather see my wife in the mirror in the morning going on about what a fun guy I am.
- Think more about the compass point giving direction in life, and less about the clock running your life.
- Imagine your eulogy.
Okay. But I can’t get past imagining what my neighbors would say, because I imagine them saying, “He was a nice guy, and quiet, I don’t know if I ever had a conversation with him longer than two sentences. Who would have ever suspected he would have an arsenal of automatic weapons, yet alone use them so violently?” And that gets me chuckling and see, the article has me feeling better already and I’ll have to finish the list some other time thing.