So far today I’ve gotten a massive amount of gardening done. The front island was overgrown and I had to get the trellis in the ground so we could buy the climbing plants. And why did I get to do gardening? Well, today I have a bit of rare free time from the kids and wife so I got the gardening chores done. Then for the first time ever I thought it would be a great idea to take my Mac, go to the Devil’s Slide Taproom and write in my journal while sipping on a beerski or two or three.
I’m absolutely exhausted from the gardening and if I had stayed home I’d just have fallen asleep. So here I sit in the middle of the room and even though I’m surrounded by people I feel completely closed off from them with my earbuds in and banging this entry out in my journal. I thought I might just listed to the loud hum of fifteen or so conversations and perhaps eavesdrop in on one or two but I really didn’t feel like listening to “You Spin Me Right Round,” I have been listening to the ’90s channel all day and it was listening to the ’90s that I got the idea to come here. In fact it was Dave Matthew’s “Satellite” when I got the idea so I’ve put in my earbuds and and now find myself listening to “Shoop” by Salt-n-Pepa. Salt-N-Pepa isn’t inspiring me to write so I need to keep pressing the advance button until I find something that makes me want to write. Don’t tell anyone but two songs I heard I really liked while gardening where Wilson Philips ‘Hold On’ and ‘The Graduation Song’ by Vitamin D.
My hamburger has now arrived much faster than expected so I’ll have to return to writing after I’m done with lunch.
Scarfed it; now listening to ‘Wanna be a Baller’ by Lil Troy. One time at 24 Fitness a youngin’ called me a “baller” and it made me guffaw. For the record I’ve never been, nor wish to be a baller. In fact the only time most people might ‘ball’ would be in high school and I didn’t ball then either. I was a wrestler and we could beat up the ‘ballers’ if they got a little too uppity with all their balling. The only balls I play with these days are my own and I prefer Calloway. See what I did there? You have a dirty mind!
The lunch crowd is starting to disperse and I’m no longer surrounded by people. I would think that being Saturday night things are going to pick up here in an hour or two – perhaps I’ve arrived too early for my inaugural beer drinking, in pub sitting, WordPress post. But then again Pacifica never has been known for a happening night spot.
I’ve now finished by Alaskan Amber and the waitress has just brought me my Rogue Hazelnut Brown which is quite nutty indeed. The previous beer glass was just picked up by a kid who looks no older than 20 and that reminds me that it is almost time for graduation season. So many young people wrapping up their college days and getting ready to head into the workforce, or continuing to look for work. There was a piece in some rag with advice for the young people contemplating moving to San Francisco and it spoke about the downsides. It was clickbait but a fun read for me since I happen to know exactly what they are talking about. I remember when I graduated from OSU I didn’t have a job yet and I felt like the boat had left and I was still at shore since I had no idea where or what I was going to do. Luckily the door to Japan opened and the rest is history.
Ok, someone just turned up the music and Foreigner’s “I want to know what love is” is trying to drown out my Biggie Smalls; Hypnotize is now blasting my ears to drown out Foreigner; the sound doesn’t go any higher on my phone.
But as I was saying it is graduation season and I can feel the excitement if I just direct my thoughts on those I know who are graduating; one needs only open up Facebook to be flooded with the images after all.
The first person I think of is a lovely young lady named Meo who sat next to me at Buffalo Wild Wings. With two kids I NEVER get to go out and in fact the last time I did something like I’m doing at this very moment I met Meo which was about a year and a half ago I think. I was minding my own business at the bar eating extremely hot wings and learning that my tolerance for the hotter side of the scale has greatly increased. Then, this attractive Asian girl sat next to me but seemed to be somewhat in disguise with thick rimmed glasses and a fedora. As it turned out she was from Oklahoma, here for a wedding and had been Snap Chatting long distance with the bartender. She came incognito to see if he might recognize her through the disguise which he did not. She finally let him know who she was. This was all happening right next to me and I had to jump in to the sporadic conversation – the bartender guy was working after all so it could be said that I did her a favor so she didn’t have to sit in awkward silence while her romantic interest was slinging drinks.
She told me a little about herself and I told her about my life and lo and behold we connected on the fact that we could both speak Japanese. She is from Oklahoma and of Vietnamese heritage while I’m originally from Ohio and as white as bread; and we connect on Japanese??
So, we became Facebook friends and although we never interact, from her posts I know she is about to graduate and for someone as talented as she is was hoping she would get out of Oklahoma! I shot her a message of encouragement to high tail it to Japan as soon as possible with an English teaching job but she is too scared and didn’t want to leave her mother.
This makes me think about the thousands of other young people who are about to leave the nurturing confines of academia and venture in to the wide world where life isn’t planned out for you. I’m almost 40 and some people I know haven’t really done much since high school; it is as though they are just bobbing along as the stream of life carries them along and their only effort is perhaps a paddle or two every few years or so. I also know MBA students who were so eager for a job that they took something extremely boring and in the middle of nowhere like at Scott’s Paper. That’s what you do after graduation, you get a job; and then you get married; and then life dictates you should have some kids.
And you do these things and then fifteen to twenty years later decide that this isn’t the life you wanted and so you want to make a change but are just as clueless about what you want to do as you were at graduation. So in a huff you get a divorce and get on Tinder and swipe right a lot and left a little and go on some dates and maybe even get laid; because this is exciting and you needed a change; you were feeling stuck and constricted and just needed to get out. But then after many dates you realize that dating is a lot of work and even getting laid gets boring and is something that could even be done from home, by yourself with much less effort. And then you post lots of pictures on Facebook about how well you’re doing because everything on Facebook is a very accurate portrayal of reality. But then you realize that you don’t have many friends because all the friends are either married with kids or they were mutual friends with your ex and asking them to go out could be awkward.
And I’m now listening to Dave Matthew’s ‘Satellite” which was one of my favorite songs of all time; it reminds me of going to visit my best friend Ross at Penn State University. He was on the wrestling team and I can tell you those parties were never boring to put it mildly; and that was almost twenty years ago, time sure goes quickly. At those parties I would be playing beer pong and doing keg stands and now I feel very fortunate to have enough time to drink exactly three beers while I write a post and not be interrupted over and over and over so much so that it makes it impossible to get into any sort of train of thought and write them down.
Reading back on what I wrote I wonder what people reading this may be thinking. People are always trying to derive meaning from things even when there is no hidden meaning, no sublime nuance or anything like that. If you must know I’m just trying something which I call ‘free-writing’ and it isn’t something I learned, I just decided to drink beer, in a pub and write down thoughts as they come in my journal. I guess it could be called “Stream of Consciousness writing” but as I’ve pointed out in a previous post I’m not a writer so I don’t know what the hell it would be called. I like to call it free writing. And no, it is not about me, and I’m not having a mid-life crisis; and if you keep pushing me for an answer I’d say my life is quite spectacular and to quit bothering me; I just like to write in my journal!
But even if it was about me I doubt it would be wise to write in a journal I keep online. Probably better to just go buy a fast car or motorcycle and get to the gym because you haven’t worked out in eons and are probably going to pull a hamstring, but you don’t care because you’ll feel like you’re in better shape and maybe the girls will start checking out all those muscles.
Well, a young group of kids about 25 or so just came in and are seated next to me. They have no idea that I’m writing about them at this very moment as they inspect the beer list. The girl has a septum nose ring and to be honest I really cannot see why the hell anyone would want one of those; it makes girls look like an orphaned gypsy for God’s sakes. And speaking of not knowing if people are writing about you or reading what you write I really wish this Mac came with a rearview mirror so I could see if any drunks at the bar behind me are trying to read these very words. I just took a look at them and they have long hair, tattoos and from their age would most likely need spectacles to read these words as I’m not exactly close.
And so these kids are still looking at the beer list and they are 25 and most likely graduated a while ago and are still trying to figure out what they are going to do with their lives. Now three of them have just left and the girl with the septum ring is still sitting there. I’m intrigued; what is this game they play? I give it a thirty percent chance they come back smelling like pot.
Well one guy came back and I didn’t get any wiff of pot. I did catch them looking at me out of the corner of my eye; one of my talents is knowing everything that is going on around me without looking directly at them; except for right behind me because as I said my Mac needs a rearview mirror. Perhaps they were trying to figure out what the symbol on my hat is; the only ones that might get it are my type of people and the club is small. My hat is Tadashi Hamada’s hat from Big Hero 6.
Ok, now I need to make a decision. I’m halfway through my third beer and I’m wondering if I should order another one and continue writing or pack it up and go back home? I’m still listening to ‘Satellite’ and have replayed it about six times now – great song. If I go back home it is likely that the family will be home as well and my writing extravaganza will come to an abrupt end. I’m also still extremely tired and would want to sleep which would be impossible as Ren will insist I drive the remote control Darth Vader car while he tries to hit it with Thomas the Train. It doesn’t seem right that Thomas the Train would be attacking Darth Vader but two year olds make their own rules. In fact perhaps there is much to be learned from two year olds. Here is what Ren has taught me.
When something happens that you don’t like just stick your tongue out and do like camels do when displeased. This will ensure the other party knows how you feel and is very hard to misinterpret. Also, when you get hurt or someone does something you don’t like raise a hell of a fuss then forget about it and be laughing five minutes later. Two year olds are masters at the art of letting things go. Two year olds also take pleasure in the simple things like staring down into the water of a fish tank and touching the water even though the water touching annoys the crap out of Dad because he is very concerned about contaminants and the PH of the tank! Two year olds also enjoy bath time a lot; so much so that they never want to come out. Baths are great and perhaps I haven’t been taking as much pleasure int them as I should have. Try new things! Ren always wants to try everything, especially if he sees his big brother do it. Climb up on to the back of the couch and jump face first into the cushions? Why the hell not! I would actually like to join him but I don’t think the wife would appreciate that too much.
I also still have to go to ACE hardware to by ant poison because we have some very persistent ants that aren’t getting the memo that all the tape we’ve put over any openings mean they are not welcome in the living room. They are coming in through a heating vent and as much as I hate to use poison I’m going to do it because they are invading our personal space and I won’t stand for it.
Ok, I’ve made a decision – it is time to pack up and go home. I don’t even know what I just wrote and true to form am certainly not going to proofread, check for grammar mistakes or even if I’ve been coherent. And I think ‘Crossroads’ by the Bone Thugs is a good song to wrap up this post to. Now I just need to get my check.
And those two other kids still haven’t come back yet – they’re up to shenanigans I’m sure of it!