Forty

I turned forty yesterday. Seems like some sort of milestone and the sort of thing a person should have some thoughts about. I don’t. I’ve never been much concerned with birthdays and I dislike birthday parties. Being sung to in public just seems like about the worst thing that could ever happen to a person. You just age until you die and that’s all that is. As for being born? Well, everyone on the planet has done that shit.

So, yeah, I’m more or less indifferent to the passage of time. It’s not some sort of philosophical perspective arrived at through thought or, if it was, I don’t remember arriving at it. It’s just my temperament. I don’t spend a lot of time looking backwards. I don’t mind things changing or ending. You can have a thing or be a thing or do a thing and then not do any of it and the thing is probably just fine, where it is, in the past. I sort of feel, on a gut level, that these things, nothing, ever really goes anywhere. That the past isn’t lost, just unseen from this vantage and there’s not a lot of sense worrying about it.

I’ve always been more inclined to look towards the future. For all the good that ever does. Life is fucking strange. If you’d told me at thirty, maybe even thirty five, that at forty I’d being living in LA, going back to college and going to the gym, while working at a grocery store, I never would have been able to see a path from where I was to here. None of those things were things I’d ever been interested in. So shit is odd.

But, insofar as it’s possible to plan or to give advice, I suppose mine would be to always plan to increase your options. Well, usually. Sometimes, you have to decrease them. Shit, I don’t know. It’s not like age brings wisdom. Other things do that.

I let the day pass quietly, handed in the third part of a paper on The Great Gatsby, which was due and did some Art History assignments, but I did do something a bit unusual – I went to a tailor. That used to be pretty usual. But this was the first time I’d been to a tailor in years. There was none in Sacramento and, well, have you been to Sacramento? Fucking place is about three thousand degrees in the sun. I don’t even think there’s tailors there. To be completely honest, I view that whole period as exile and exile does not make you feel much like buying a suit. It felt like prison. I had to serve my time with the goal of leaving. I don’t want to say that I hated it but, well, The Little Blue Man came for a visit and stayed too long. He tested my endurance. He didn’t break me but he sure beat my ass up and down the block. Put me through some changes, not all of them for the better. I was just not built for that place. And it sure as fuck was not built for me. But I survived it, came out the other side and things are different now. I’m off the mat. I feel better. The Little Blue Man is back in hiding, where he belongs. Fuck that dude.

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I’ll probably talk about this more later but, for now, it felt really good to go to a tailor again. I walked home with a smile on my face. A little bounce in my step. I’m getting another suit – a birthday suit, and I’m pretty happy about it. It’s been too fucking long.

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