Saturday, July 11, 2009
The Road to Nowhere
There's a big difference between being on the Road to Nowhere and Circling the Airport. When you're on the Road to Nowhere, you may not have a clear destination in mind - a concept, perhaps a vague idea. You may take a detour or two as you wander. The scenery changes along the way. You have new and different experiences. You grow and evolve.
When you're circling the airport, it's the same shit over and over again in the same way. Maybe one time you're a little more to the left, the next somewhat to the right - but you're stuck in an endlessly repeating loop. The phase circling the airport is used for airplanes in the air, but if you're a person on the ground going through the same shit day after day - you're digging yourself deeper into a big, fat rut.
If I hadn't have gotten fired, most likely I'd have stayed in that same old miserable, soul crushing job for another year. I hate circling the airport.
I will admit to a bit of anxiety these last couple of days because a potential employer emailed my references asking for letters of recommendation. So far, my favorite recommendation comes from a woman who was my supervisor for ten years who said, "How fortunate you are to have the opportunity to hire Tricia." I'm feeling confident and positive, but until papers are signed, I'll be nervous.
Buzz Kill has been moderately supportive, but he's starting to panic. He was over this week so we could work together to cut household expenses. We actually made good progress before he thought he'd help me stay motivated by declaring I'd be moving back to Texas if I didn't get a good job fast. I had to remind him that I'm not going anywhere without the $23,000 he owes me which put a stop to that line of thinking.
Even though all roads lead to Austin sooner or later, at the moment I can say for certain the Road to Nowhere is going nowhere near Texas. It's going to the East Village next week because I've got two readings to attend. Most everyone is broke these days, but we should continue to be creative and entertain ourselves. Hell, that's the foundation of Menopausal Stoners Existentialism: Life is uncertain and probably meaningless so let your light shine and live it up.
Velvet's time with my parents in the suburbs of Houston has been so productive that he's getting time off for good behavior. He started begging to come back to New York after just a few days because he is surrounded by dolts who believe Fox News is true. Not my parents, of course. They lean toward the Libertarian point of view, supporting Ron Paul and Kinky Friedman as long as Kinky doesn't take himself too seriously. Velvet has settled in now that he's taking drivers' ed and doing data entry for a neighbor's office. He's also been going to watch the Astros with my dad from his season tickets on the club level. Baseball is much more comfortable with a waitress and a full bar which is a good thing since the Astros have been playing uncommonly bad baseball lately.
Another neighbor is taking Velvet to a gun show next weekend. Velvet never went to a gun show before, and the fellow who is taking him is a redneck investment broker. He's nice enough as far as rednecks go - much nicer than Gayle the hillbilly hustler - but we suspect he is cultivating Velvet in order to distract his daughter from her high yellow boyfriend. When Velvet heard about all the whack jobs he'd meet at the gun show, he jumped at the chance to go. Somebody needs to tell the neighbor that Velvet gets his kicks by taunting schizophrenics on the subway.
The most notable change in Velvet is that now when he goes into a business, like Ben & Jerry's for example, it's not simply a place where he can spend money. It's a place where he could work. Velvet is showing strength of character, cheerful resilience, a sense of responsibility and determination to succeed when working toward a goal. It's damn nice when your parents are impressed with your kid.
He got an excellent report card, too, despite the Old English 40's and evidence of marijuana those ruffians left all over the living room. So I said I'd drive him and a bunch of kids up to Vermont to the fair the Hippy Dippy Quaker Camp has every August. It won't cost much since the kids will be camping and I'll enjoy summer rates at a modest ski hotel next to the creek. I haven't been in that valley for a couple of years and am looking forward to dozing in the sun by the birch trees and attending silent meeting in the clearing the next morning. In that setting, it'll be easier to accept the idea that Cupcake will be sharing a little tent with Velvet.
That's how it is on the road to nowhere.
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