HOW NOT TO CARE WHEN YOU DO

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I just read a blog written by one of my favorites, Waldo Tomosky.  He had a song from uTube linked in and I listened to it with tears running down my face.  Here’s the kicker.  It was in a foreign language.  I have no clue what they said.  One of the singers was a redhead and there were a lot of redheads in the audience.  It could have been in South Africa for all I know, but I felt like I should have been there.

Lately, I feel like there is so much I should have learned.  There are still things I want to learn, but all the stuff I never knew existed?  I am just going to miss out on that.  And so what?

Suppose I die with this vast encyclopedic amount of knowledge stored in my brain.  Then what?  I guess it may mean I enjoyed my life a little more because of the learning experience. But what did it accomplish?  Why will my mark on the world differ from that left by the woman who raised ten kids without a dishwasher?  Maybe a scrap of my DNA will show up in someone who invents something or discovers something that makes the world a better place.   But should I even wonder about that or hope that it becomes so?  I don’t.  I don’t give it a thought.  Sometimes I wonder what can be going on inside someone’s head that makes them believe something that I think is off the wall crazy, but basically, all I care about is the noise in my own head.  And the only reason I am glad there are people like Delaney to make me smile is because it makes the inside of my head feel good.  I could not be bothered to live if something or someone didn’t have that effect on me or if I was incapable of feeling it.

I dare not consider what is in store for Delaney or Benjamin or even Cassie who should already be up and running.  Such thoughts would be fruitless and would not feel good to my brain.  So I don’t think of them.  Well, sometimes they creep in.

I get all in a swivet when I think of the futility of something like having a war or building a road in a country like Afghanistan.  But I shouldn’t bother.  I shouldn’t care.  It makes no difference if I do or not. I know for an absolute certainty that the women who was storing the stolen RPGs in her root cellar and then had her house and her kids and herself blown to bits because of it never gave a shit or probably ever even knew of the thousands of people and children affected by the bombing of the twin towers.  And I start to cry when I see a US General pour out a knapsack full of American dollars to some Afghani tribesman as “reparation”.  Not because it is a waste of cash, which it is, but because it is a gesture that someone somewhere tries to put meaning to or hopes will have meaning and it doesn’t.  And it can’t. And no amount of knowledge or effort will ever make it be what it is not.

And the people that should be loved and honored and go unrecognized or ignored?  Maybe it is someone I know.  Maybe it is someone I should know.  Maybe they are sad because no one recognizes them or their needs or accomplishments. Or someone doesn’t give them the love they want.  I am better off not knowing about it.  Does that mean the people who invest their lives in trying to correct wrongs to their fellow man are misguided?  No.  But, at least, every now and then,  their efforts bear fruit.  Actually, of the gazillion people that have walked this earth,  Jonas Salk is the only one  I can think of at the moment.  For the most part, their efforts or the few dollars an elderly widow puts in an envelope at personal sacrifice make no difference at all.  I really would love to go to Patna India and see if my grandma’s name is really on that plaque on that baptismal font she funded.  As a matter of fact, one of her grand children was there, and I asked him to look  but he couldn’t fit it into his itinerary.  He didn’t care if it was there or not.

For me it is a constant battle that has many side effects and has an affect on many people and situations just to try and have perspective and get through the day doing what needs to be done and figuring out what I should do or must do.  God bless the people who don’t need to do that, who walk through their day effortlessly following in the footsteps some Higher Power left for them, never questioning where those prints are leading them.  I had a friend, kind of still keep in touch, who was not the sharpest knife in the drawer.  She was medium looks, medium IQ, medium resources.  I could never figure out why she had the most successful marriage, the most interesting career, of any one I knew.  I think it is because she took life as it came.  My husband always says “Roll with the punches.”  I am so fucking sick of hearing that.  And it is because I resent the fact that he can and he does do exactly that and lays down every night to sweet deep slumber and I cannot.

A lonely piece of paper
Blows down the road
Atop the glittering frozen snow.
It is not wrinkled. 
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One thought on “HOW NOT TO CARE WHEN YOU DO

  1. Waldo "Wally" Tomosky

    Isn’t it strange how some music can get to us and others doesn’t raise even one goose-bump? I find that Russian songs that are sad (like you Virginia, I have no idea whether they are really sad or just sad to me) strike somewhere inside me. I can not help but wonder if these feelings we get are not some sort of instinct remaining in us; remnants of our ancestral experiences. My ancestors came from the Russian/Ukranian area. The song is from the story of a man who lived his life between Iceland, Norway and the British Isles. Possibly you have ancestors in that triangle. Maybe this restlessness that sits inside those of us who write is simply – – – instinct – – – warning us of things we do not need to worry about any longer.

    Reply

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