How we are feeling at any given moment is relative, to our own feelings at other times and to the way anyone else feels in a given moment on a given day. I wouldn’t trade a moment of my life for even the happiest one of anybody else’s, but that’s just me. That said, I passed a sad, low energy day today. It was not only stumbling on the fezbook page of my old friend’s widow (she was the suggested friend of a friend I’d gone to read something by), seeing the beaming face of my dead friend in a couple of photos I’d never seen, and the one where, flanked by his daughters, his head is an alarmingly white ball with his familiar face on it. I didn’t immediately think of the image of our old mutual friend, after a visit with him not long before the end, stopping in on neighbors who were having dinner, and bursting into uncontrollable sobs. That image hit me just now, though it must have been lurking since I saw those happy moments in the life of my old, dead friend.
I’d woken two hours too early again today, no idea what’s up with that shit. This time I emerged from a dream where I was two-timing two pretty, delightful young women who were both, in the manner of such dreams, quite crazy about me. Complicating matters was that they lived in apartments directly next door to each other, so that I locked the door of one and unlocked the door of the other after the first one went to work and the other was about to arrive home. The obvious question of how anyone could possibly be clever enough, duplicitous enough, enough of a psychopath (not to put too fine a point on it), to carry on this deception was a considerable one. One, the newer of the two lovers (I was leaning toward choosing this girl, if things didn’t blow up completely before I could do so), was a singer, and I had a gig at a restaurant accompanying her on guitar, for decent pay, as I recall. The other was very cool too, and I’d known her longer, and we were very compatible and laughed a lot together. The sex with both of them was great. Neither had any idea of the existence of the other, as I went from one to the other over the course of an increasingly disquieting dream. In the end, I was awake, alone, on mysteriously short sleep.
Not long afterwards I was looking at the smiling face of my dead friend who’d died of a rare cancer, a deadly soft tissue sarcoma, The same one that killed Hugo Chavez, he told me after Chavez died. He told me that shortly before he himself died. I had a call from another old friend, a prostate cancer survivor, who is seeing his oncologist Wednesday about another unrelated cancer, some kind of soft tissue sarcoma. Fucking hell. He was calling me for advice, his sisters are closing in trying to get the rest of the money their mother left them. I told him to just give them their shares and tell them to shut the fuck up now. His daughter, a survivor of sexual assault at age ten from her mom’s new boyfriend (a guy my friend has somehow managed not to murder) is having nightmares. The latest one involves her dad dying before she gets back from sleep-away camp. In spite of it all, we had a few laughs, he promised to keep me posted on what he learns after his visit to the oncologist.
In the background today the Yankees came from behind to tie the game in Tampa, and then, on the first pitch in the bottom of the twelfth, boom! walk-off home run. Yankees lose. Judge O for 5. I’d watched the last segments of a documentary on Netflix called The Staircase, which sets out what appears to have been a grave and vicious fifteen year miscarriage of justice, in twelve parts. Well done, but the only doctor who would have ordered it for me today would have been Dr. Mengele, the notorious Nazi fuck. To relax I went for a long walk and listened to a bit of Hannah Arendt’s insanely detailed The Origins of Totalitarianism, which I’d recommended to a friend as being on a par with Eichmann in Jerusalem, but which I am having second thoughts about.
Returned from the stroll on aching knees, after several days doing the exercises the distracted young woman at the PT place showed me the other day, then didn’t bother to supervise as to form. Which would have been impossible, since she was simultaneously working with two other patients with non-knee-related troubles, each behind a curtain of their own, but very close by. My knees are killing me, as I wait for the ibuprofen– possibly deadly for my idiopathic kidney disease — to kick in. Well, they are not really killing me, my knees, they’re more than usually sore. I will live. That is the thing that is so easy to forget in this exciting world we all eventually must leave forever– for the time being, we will live.
The miracle of it, and the tragedy, really.