And sometimes, when I write these blog posts -- these strange messages from (sometimes) my ego, (sometimes) my experience, and (often) my heart -- it feels like I'm just sitting talking with all of you, and you're sitting right next to me with a cup of tea, your shoes off and your feet tucked up under you on the sofa. Just me blabbing to you -- as much mess as message. This is one of those, I'm afraid.
I'm doing a poor job of mult-tasking. Writing while noodling around on iTunes (somehow all my music got sucked up into the cloud, along with my playlists, which of course I never bothered to back up -- do it now? when I can do it later? Please! I imagine my music up there in the cloud, bumping into everyone else's music, and at first feeling shy and self conscious but then remembering, "Hey! We are great!" and standing up tall. Wow. Project much SP?) Anyone who saw all my music in one group would be... puzzled. There's eclectic and then there's multiple personality disorder. Given that scale, when we talk about "the committee" in our heads in AA, it seems like each of mine has their own personal iTunes shopping experience.
I'm also randomly jotting down a list of things not to forget -- packing for a road trip this weekend. Heading out to an AA Convention and man, do I need one right now. So far my list includes "Phone charger cord. Almonds. Blazer."
I told you I was doing a poor job of multi-tasking. Real grown-ups make organized lists and not random stream-of-consciousness scribbles on the back of an envelope for Christ's sake! Ah well, unmasked once again -- if there's such a thing as a real grown up I. Ain't. It.
Part of why the break is such a welcome relief is that there have been some changes at work I haven't had time to write about here. (I've barely had time to write here period, let alone get all personal and chatty about my fear -- why is it always fear? <sigh> -- and daily challenges on the job.) They've moved me to a different restaurant from the cozy one I started at. Lest you think this is some sort of endorsement on their part, I'm afraid it's more akin to a battlefield promotion. Someone quit, then someone else quit... if my bosses are like the little boy sticking his fingers in the dyke to stem the flood, then I, dear readers, am one of the fingers gettin' stuck.
Much (much) busier. Much harder. A much younger crew. I say this without (too much) exaggeration: I come home from work sometimes and think "this job is actually shaving years off my life."
Boo hoo, poor me.
Never fear. AA works. Some days I'm grateful -- I just wake up that way with my head on straight.
Some days I have to get to grateful -- and it's like starting a car on a cold winter's morning. Takes a couple turns of the ignition key and a little "rrrr...rrrr...rrrr" before it starts up. And even then you have to sit and let it idle some.
And some days... some days it's like that thing that fell on the floor and rolled under the sofa and you lay down on the rug and sneeze at all the dust bunnies you discover and stretch your arm all the way out and fish around and you can only just brush it with your finger tips and then the very act of doing so seems to push it that little bit farther away and out of reach and your head space is simply crap all day.
Since I've had a few more of those last types of mornings lately than I care to confess, even with all the damn writing and praying and sponsees and blah blah blah, a weekend of AA out of town is (possibly) quite literally a life-saving prescription from Dr. God. (who, by the way, does take all kinds of insurance, but the lab work is still killer and covered under a different plan.)
"Arrange someone to check on cats" goes on the list.
"Kindle" on the list.
The new restaurant -- and the drama around this which isn't entirely in my head -- has prompted a fresh round of spiritual examination, too. Seems to be God's will that some people are cashiers at Walmart. Or cooks in my kitchen (which is hot, hard work. I'm a really nice boss, but it is still really hot, hard work). What if you don't like God's will for you? You can do the footwork right? But what if
Wait. STOP. Now you see why a weekend of AA for me can be filed under "potentially life saving." The "What if's" are about as useless as the "Why's" when it comes to God and God's will. Accept or skewer yourself on the kabob of your famously, redundantly, riotous self-will. Or shut up and do the footwork and (as always, damnit) stay out of the result. (Aargh! I literally want to scream at that sometimes.)
"Kindle Charger" on the list.
"Comb. Chapstick." Wait, is that one of those can't-take-with-you things for airplanes now? I've been able to avoid flying for quite a while. Oh well, if they need to confiscate my chapstick they're welcome to it.
And I have a new boss. Which is another whole post for another whole day, I assure you. Suffice to say that he has, so far, not proven to be a huge fan of the Mr. SponsorPants Experience. And sometimes that is in your head, and sometimes it isn't. This... isn't.
Boo hoo, poor me. Did you know there are children in Africa who have so many flies around their eyes that from a distance they appear to be wearing glasses? (Multi-tasking! I'm also watching an interview with a former President who does a lot of wonderful charity work around the world. He's talking about the more than two million latrines they've dug in the sub-sahara regions, transforming whole villages' hygiene almost overnight. And I am whining about my boss who might not like me as much as I want him to. Jesus.) Perspective SP? BUT... perspective is good -- IMPORTANT -- but my life is my life and my problems are MY problems and I'm the one who needs to do something about it. What's that part in the Big Book about the retired clergyman sighing about the sins of the 20th Century? Awareness of the world and the deplorable things sometimes found in it must not be used to completely undercut myself. That, too, is as out-of-balance as NO awareness of the world and a complete self-focus.
Oh man, some of this music is old, old drinking music. Music I listened to when sneaking out of the house, stealing my dad's car out of the garage and driving out into the night. Purchased in a nostalgic sweep of emotion, sometimes it takes me right back to being that sad boy on those mad nights of very bad freefall. Let's... let's skip listening to those this evening, shall we?
The new kids who work for me have divined so far that I don't drink, and that I am a man of a certain age with a suspicious amount of knowledge about old Broadway musicals, books, movies and television they've never heard of. I try not to judge, but at least once a day I tell them all they are woefully un-informed and that by having the poor judgement to be born as late as they were they missed... well, simply everything fun and interesting, and must now wander a barren pop landscape of "Real Housewives" and Little Heinie, or Baby Lulu -- or whatever that poor child with the tv show and the sugar addiction is called. They pause in whatever they're doing and look at me like rabbits, confused by the oncoming headlights of a strange and maybe dangerous car barreling towards them.
See? AA Weekend. Stat.