I’m a curious spirit, fumbling along through the existential adventure. I’m a cranky malcontent, irritated with traffic, stupidity and nefarious politics. I’m irrefutably human. I’ve chosen dubious battles and taken errant detours. I’ve made reckless remarks I still regret, ignored my smarter angels when I should have listened, bet on bad horses and created much of my own suffering over the years. But I’ve also conquered formidable beasts and endured crushing losses that seemed impossible to recover from. I know the abyss and how to climb out of it. And I know how to be a safe haven for the people I love. My Gemini soul is a fusion of grit and tenderness.
I have messy hair, clunky boots and a little ink here and there. I’m told I walk with a distinctive shuffle. My body is changing. Every day involves a negotiation with my knees. But I dance anyway. Wear and tear are the price of admission.
I am happy in the most peculiar of ways. My brain is a perpetual circus of inane drivel, entertaining observations and ridiculous speculation. When I celebrate, I take everyone along with me. Playfulness has served me well over the years. I can cultivate a rapport with anyone, even the most rigid among us. I have a special relationship with dogs. Those are the good ones, you know.
I am harder than I want to be sometimes and not as patient. But I’m working on it. I have to believe that good humor and a fundamentally gentle heart count for something. My father taught me not to take myself too seriously. Life is easier and more fun when I remember that.
When I was a kid, I ate dog biscuits (for shock value), made faces in the mirror and hated myself for being fat. I fixated on words that amused me and unleashed them on the world, repeating them again and again and again to whomever was in earshot. If I could not be beautiful, at least I could be jolly.
I understand the limits of stubbornness and the relief of surrender. I’ve stopped waiting for things that are never going to happen and putting my faith in people who will never come through. I don’t waste time on those who are less enthusiastic than I am. I used to see a homeless woman doing daily prostrations under the freeway at James Street. She is a reminder of everything I still have to learn.
My children are the most glorious part of this journey. I am grateful for everything they’ve taught me and for their extraordinary grace and love. As young adults, they blaze through the world with exquisite and unapologetic verve. I could not be prouder.
I have an inexplicable and deeply satisfying passion for football. Sometimes, I think of little else. Life is short. I say read the sports section first. When I die, please scatter my ashes in the end zone.
I have zero tolerance for bullies and no patience for those who seek to harm others, especially in situations of egregious power imbalance. There is never a good reason for choosing hate over love.
As I get older, there are fewer absolutes. Humanity is messy. I want to believe our collective compassion will save us all. But I am a weathered realist, looking through an Eeyore lens. My goal is to focus on my patch of the planet and to do whatever good I can here.
I’ve done the best with what I’ve been given to work with. This is my story, at least what I know of it so far.