Sunday, May 8, 2011

A few thoughts about home (what else?)

"Do you mean to tell me, Katie Scarlett O'Hara, that Tara, that LAND doesn't mean anything to you? Why, land is the only thing in the world worth workin' for, worth fightin' for, worth dyin' for, because it's the only thing that lasts."
--Gone With The Wind.

Nine PM. Back at Terminal Four at LAX. And, indeed, where better to finally write to you than the Admirals Club?

And, no, not gloating. At all. The kind of chap who's a gloater, see, would have MADE that 4:20PM flight, and not had to spend his last few hours in LA gazing out at at incoming and outgoing air traffic.

Anyway. Sorry for dropping off the radar for a bit. I've been working on two (!) Scene-of-the-months (and they're winners), and I didn't want to write 'til they were done... but here I am. Thinking. (...and, in truth, drinking as well. Never good, but free wine will do that to a man.)

I am by ancestry Irish, mostly. And as such, am a member of a culture for whom bonding to a place, a home, is a defining link in the DNA.

But I currently pay rent on three storage facilities. I am having mail held in two cities. My car keys are with a friend. I offer a quick nod of acquaintance to the ID kid at the TSA line at LAX (who, I SWEAR TO CHRIST, is the twin of Jake Gyllenhal), and he says: "where you been?" I have not boarded a plane in about two months and realize that is my longest flight-gap in over three years.

And standing here, gazing into the mirror of the admittedly lovely restroom in the Admiral's Club... I look tired. (When it didn't matter, I was often called "young-looking." Really, who gives a shit? Now, an embarrassing truth: I do. And I'm not, any more.) I don't think people are meant to live like this. At least not people like me.

But... what if I'm wrong? I never thought I'd get good at this life, but. No matter what it is, we get good at what we do. And I don't know how it happened but this is what I do.

Is there ever a moment? When a person looks in a mirror and realizes that, perhaps, This Is It, For Me? (and, if so, shouldn't such a moment have come earlier in life?) Is there a too-yong part of me fighting this, protesting that no, there's Something Else?

Besides. Amongst us humans there are nomads-- entire cultures defined by their ability to never put down roots. As one of the Concord Poets (Emerson?) pointed out, migratory birds never return to last year's nest. Thing is, how does one know such a thing about one's self?

Do you?

Outside, in a ballet of slow-motion, whale-like grace, a Quantas 747 is pushed onto the taxiway. Strange, how silent it is behind glass. In truth, I love this part. I love wondering where that plane is going, what lives are moving forward. I do love forward motion.

And now, quietly in the background, Miles Davis. Flamenco Sketches, off "Kind of Blue." One of the most beautiful pieces of music ever recorded.

Again: what is it, exactly, with life? How can it be beautiful and mysterious and lonely and hard and joyful all at once? I thought only women possessed that capability...

I owe you an apology, I think, because this was heading somewhere when it started (I swear it was). But it ended... here.

So. I'm in NYC for a month or so, with a few Boston weekends in the mix. I'd love to see you-- so if you're looking for a class in NYC or Boston let me know.

Actually, shoot me an email either way. I'd love to hear your thoughts on all this. I really would.

Thanks for reading,