What a depressing time this is to be alive. Culture is dead, truth is dead, identity and the individual is dead, mental illness reigns, depression reigns, social media has taken away our humanity and many forms of equilibrium--mental, emotional, intellectual, spiritual--and with the internet and a virus you now see total panic, and an even greater amount of virtue signaling and fearmongering from people devoid of identity who live--exist--to do this with whatever comes along. The internet and coronavirus is a bad, bad combo. No matter what my situation would be--well, with a caveat--I would say these are depressing times to be alive. The caveat is that I think I could make them much less depressing. And no, I don't think that's arrogant. I don't think there has ever been anyone like this in human history, and that doesn't seem like I'm out on much of a limb there.
I climbed five times yesterday, which makes two full week of climbing at least five times every day. I saw on Instragram this morning a post by Emma that even though she was sick she was going back to school, so I texted her although, as I've said, we don't talk. The sorry--some would say cruel--behavior of last year was reprised, and what choice did I have then or now? Not any choice, really. But even still, one cares. Or I do, anyway.
C: Have you been sick?
E: yea a bit
E: No corona though
C: Did you see the doctor?
C: Okay. Make sure you wash your hands several times throughout the day.
C: If you got it you'd be fine, but it wouldn't be good for older people like your grandparents.
E: I haven't visited them
E: Even if my pupa got a head cold it would be really really bad
C: You wouldn't want to not be able to visit them. Just be smart like you are.
C: You know, I get disappointed with you, I don't think you have any regard for me or our friendship, but that doesn't mean I don't love you. And I have answers if you have questions. Have a good day at school.
And that, by the way, is the guy who the publishing industry thinks is a monster, an asshole, a pushy prick as I was once called anonymously by a coward, a demon, whatever else it all is. Yep. Clearly just a bad, vile dude. Look at all of these pages of this blog. What a monster, right? What a monster that needs to be beheaded and delimbed and have his various parts buried in the sand so that no one can ever see them again. Or...or...or a truly kind man who is a genius who out performs, out works, out produces everyone and says and believes in the truth and does things the right way and is just trying to get where he deserves to be and where the world needs him at. But in publishing, in 2020, there is nothing worse that you could be.
My hair is getting long, starting to curl in the back. I'll tape another Songs of Note podcast later today on Sam Cooke's "Bring It on Home to Me." I heard the Animals version before I heard the Sam Cooke version, riding around in the backseat of a car on Cape Cod as a mid-teen on summer vacation. We should make a bigger push this summer with Buried on the Beaches: Cape Stories for Hooked Hearts and Driftwood Souls. I know it can eventually be the book of Cape Cod, this year in, year out seller--like Make Way for Ducklings in Boston--but not that it's just a Cape Cod book or primarily a Cape Cod book. It's primarily a human book. Someone was saying to me a while ago that all of the characters in it are so likeable, they're good people. I think that is true. When you say that, though, it almost sounds like it's not going to be realistic, that the challenges of life will not occur and need to be faced. A lot of what great storytelling involves is having character make decisions. If you go through my fiction, you will see characters change, you'll see their feelings, their reactions, but you'll also see them have to decide various things. This person's comments made me think about Buried, because it is a joyful book in some ways, joyful in that it brings what it means to be human, and to connect, back home to us, if you will. But I thought about the various situations and topics of the book. You have parental death, suicide, disability, murder, abduction, infidelity, buried bodies on a beach, a parent absconding, alcoholism. Doesn't it say something that you have all of that happening, and it's a joyful book? What does that say--even before you've read it, which you should--about the characters? What does it say about the lessons it can impart to you and the meaning it can bring to your life?