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Growing up

Wednesday 9/9/20

For everything that is happening right now, and as hard as this is, I realize I am very fortunate the way I grew up. It's been on my mind lately. I grew up with arts, books, nature, sports, parents who encouraged me to think and feel and wonder. Encouraged me to learn who I was one walk in the woods at a time, one book at a time, one joke at a time that I thought was funny--for some reason, that joke about the man throwing the clock out the window epitomized humor to me. Maybe it was the time element, the farcical vein that perhaps would have also pleased young Gogol and Kharms. They always did their best to answer my questions. And when they didn't know, they didn't lie to me, they didn't blow me off, they either found out, or said something that set me on my way to finding out.

I remember one time I asked my father if it would ever be this day--that day at the time--again. By which I meant, that calendar day of that year. A day with that notation, like today is 9/9/2020. And he said to me, no, this is it for this day, and it will never come again. This is its moment, its existence. Each day has that one day. And it never comes again.

And I just thought that was mind-blowing. That within the great sweep of time, a portion of time becomes extinct each day, each minute, each second, each fraction of a second. I asked my parents a lot of questions like that. I asked my mom questions about books, and she always understood how much they meant to me. How they could be physical phenomena to me. I loved my books and I kept them in beautiful condition, and even later when I was older, at Christmas, and my mom would get me books, if I had the first volume of something in hardcover, she'd get the second volume in hardcover, too, making sure it was a nice copy, the jacket wasn't chipped, anything like that, understanding how important it was to me to live among works of art, to have that be the stuff of my home, to surround me.

Obviously this isn't ideal right now, in this death trap of an apartment, but I always have an eye on finally leaving this place and returning to my house in Rockport, for which, as I've said, I'd give anything, save my ability or my soul. They may be the same thing. I think they probably are, but I am not fully sure yet. My parents did so much for me to help me prepare to become who I am. They really couldn't have done more for me at the time. They couldn't have been better.


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