My wife told me tonight that I should get out more, talk to people, interact, etc. I told her I didn't want to, I know enough people and most of the new ones I meet bore the hell out of me. I don't want any more friends than the ones I have. She's worried about me. Hell I'm worried about me. What ever problems I have aren't going to be solved by meeting new people.
I worry about myself a lot until I encounter someone like I ran into the other morning at the convenience store down the road from our house. The guy in front of me was around my age, long, messy, gray hair, no ass. Jeans, work shirt, Wolverine boots. It's 8 in the morning and he's got a 6 pack and a plastic jug of Vodka under his arm. He's talking to the Syrian kid whose old man owns the store about lottery tickets, mulling over whether to buy the California or the national. This gray haired, old bastard with no ass, turns to me and says, "What do you think?' I wasn't paying attention so I just said, "Dunno."
He bought the Powerball. After he paid, he said, "You ever been to that fucking Bingo parlor down the road in the valley? Christ I walked in the other night and those god damned old ladies in there about shit, I couldn't believe those old ladies, man I don't get it at all." With that he walked out the door. I wish my wife would have been with me. By comparison I'm George fucking Clooney.
Getting old, aging, is not easy. I find I'm more forgetful, I'm crabby about shit I don't mean to be crabby about. I know I'm mean from time to time. Little things piss me off, things that never used to bother me irritate the hell out of me.
I worked in broadcasting from the time I was 22 until I was 65, then started another business. I worked hard until two years ago when turned 68. I seldom worked less than 50 hours a week, most of the time a lot more than that. Could I do it again? Sure, but it would have to be interesting, because for me it always has to be interesting. That's where I found the fun in my work, in my career. That's where I found the joy in my life. I haven't had that joy for the last two years and the lack of that joy has turned me into kind of an asshole. I don't like being an asshole, I really don't.
I spend a lot of time reading, I always have. I get lost in a good book, the genre doesn't matter, I simply like good writing. Which leads me to this...
I'm trying to write, I've been trying for a couple of years. I've been part of a couple of writer's groups, I've gotten decent feedback.
Writing is the hardest thing I've ever done. You write, you get up the next morning and there it is. You read it and think, "What the hell?" You edit, you rewrite, sometimes you delete it. A lot. You try different styles, first person, third person narratives, you try everything. so far, I've written, in the last couple of years, around 50,000-75,000 words, maybe more. I'm too lazy to pull up all the files and do a word count.
It has taken me all of those words to just get a glimpse of my possibilities. To maybe find my "voice". It's painful and it's hard. I go to bed at night and think, "This is bullshit, it isn't going anywhere." And then, something appears like this.
When Lars looked up from his Wall Street Journal, he saw Caroline examining her right leg in the Florida morning sun. She held it high, turned it from side to side. She dropped it and did the same with her left. Lars noticed two things immediately, the first was for a girl her age, Sheila has a pair of great legs and secondly she didn’t have any underwear on.
Sheila brushed back her long, dark hair and put her pink painted fingers on her temples, “I have a little bit of a hangover this morning, Lars.”
“Gee, I can’t imagine why.”
“I only had three.”
“Three martinis is one martini too many, sweetheart. The fact that you crawled on my lap on the drive home was kind of a tip off. We’re lucky the cop had a sense of humor.” Lars said.
“The cop who pulled up alongside of us at the light by the shopping center.”
“I missed all of that.”
“Well, there you go."
I'm going to continue to write and work on my demeanor, I hate being an asshole, know what I mean?