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Are you glad you are not dead?
Old 11-23-2012, 08:56 AM   #1
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Are you glad you are not dead?

I loved this OP Ed in the NYT on the joy of being alive. Nothing to summarize, just a day in the life piece from a guy of a certain age.
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Old 11-23-2012, 10:35 AM   #2
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Well, YES.... I'd be even more glad if I found the secrets of immortality and eternal youth.

I thought this was an interesting observation:

Quote:
I suppose it’s a cliché to say you’re glad to be alive, that life is short, but to say you’re glad to be not dead requires a specific intimacy with loss that comes only with age or deep experience. One has to know not simply what dying is like, but to know death itself, in all its absoluteness.

After all, there are many ways to die — peacefully, violently, suddenly, slowly, happily, unhappily, too soon. But to be dead — one either is or isn’t.

The same cannot be said of aliveness, of which there are countless degrees.
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Old 11-23-2012, 11:14 AM   #3
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I'm happy so far. My grandmother wasn't too happy about hanging around so long. She lived in a nursing home, with no friends left. We were far enough away that we could visit only once a week. She was ready and willing it go.
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Old 11-23-2012, 11:37 AM   #4
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This is wonderful!

I love moments like this; small and routine in reality but, magnified by our ability to live in and absorb them, made even more special when they're shared with someone. I particularly like sunsets and dusk.

I have this thing where I've remembered the details from every decade-changing New Year's eve for the past five such changes. It's a strange mix of things, filtered of course through the lens of childhood, young adulthood and middle age, making it very special to me.

I also have to admit sharing a little of the OCD thing (synchronized stop lights) with our Irish author.

Leave it to another Irishman to romanticize the ordinary.
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Old 11-23-2012, 01:02 PM   #5
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I admire the author's ability to enjoy the moment, something that I struggle to do. I tend to think about "what's next" too much. It allowed me to reach FIRE earlier than most, but now that I am there, I need to take the time to stop and smell the roses.
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Old 11-23-2012, 01:51 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by donheff View Post
I loved this OP Ed in the NYT on the joy of being alive. Nothing to summarize, just a day in the life piece from a guy of a certain age.
+1

Especially the part about tears being the carwash of the soul... Hardly ever used to cry... now it's much easier... Kinda like WD40... works well in tough or sticky
situations.
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Old 11-23-2012, 04:58 PM   #7
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+1

Especially the part about tears being the carwash of the soul... Hardly ever used to cry... now it's much easier... Kinda like WD40... works well in tough or sticky situations.
What next, tear duct tape?

Enjoyed the article. Life is always a struggle to find balance...
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Old 11-24-2012, 12:37 AM   #8
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I feel this way often. I'll be walking along and suddenly I just feel almost overwhelmed by how great it is to be me, alive at this time, in this place.

This fall I have been kind of working on expanding this feeling to rainy, blustery days. Today I was downtown when the sky opened up. I'm looking around and feeling, sure enough, rain and cold is also a very good thing. You feel your not deadness very acutely when you are dealing with some minor physical discomfort. I was soon soaked, caught a bus out to my GF's house, arrived saoking wet and with a bloody toe from walking with soaked shoes. So what does she do? She gets upset with me for needing some food and attention while she was still working on a project! I was so mellow with becoming one with the rain that I didn't get mad, I just took off my wet clothes, got a Cognac and turned on the Huskies game muted.

Tonight after I came home I sat on my couch and just watched the rain swirl around the street lamps. This makes me feel very peaceful.

Ha
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Old 11-24-2012, 09:44 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by haha View Post
I feel this way often. I'll be walking along and suddenly I just feel almost overwhelmed by how great it is to be me, alive at this time, in this place.

This fall I have been kind of working on expanding this feeling to rainy, blustery days. Today I was downtown when the sky opened up. I'm looking around and feeling, sure enough, rain and cold is also a very good thing. You feel your not deadness very acutely when you are dealing with some minor physical discomfort. I was soon soaked, caught a bus out to my GF's house, arrived saoking wet and with a bloody toe from walking with soaked shoes. So what does she do? She gets upset with me for needing some food and attention while she was still working on a project! I was so mellow with becoming one with the rain that I didn't get mad, I just took off my wet clothes, got a Cognac and turned on the Huskies game muted.

Tonight after I came home I sat on my couch and just watched the rain swirl around the street lamps. This makes me feel very peaceful.

Ha
Aren't you glad you didn't throw out that cognac?
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Old 11-24-2012, 10:05 AM   #10
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I feel this way often. I'll be walking along and suddenly I just feel almost overwhelmed by how great it is to be me, alive at this time, in this place.
...
Ha
Reminds me of our beloved Corgi's FRAP'ing (Frequent Acts of Play). Suddenly for no perceived reason he would dash up the stairs, run around the room, dash down the stairs, run around down there, and end up panting with a big smile on his face.
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Old 11-24-2012, 10:46 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by haha View Post
I feel this way often. I'll be walking along and suddenly I just feel almost overwhelmed by how great it is to be me, alive at this time, in this place.

This fall I have been kind of working on expanding this feeling to rainy, blustery days. Today I was downtown when the sky opened up. I'm looking around and feeling, sure enough, rain and cold is also a very good thing. You feel your not deadness very acutely when you are dealing with some minor physical discomfort. I was soon soaked, caught a bus out to my GF's house, arrived saoking wet and with a bloody toe from walking with soaked shoes. So what does she do? She gets upset with me for needing some food and attention while she was still working on a project! I was so mellow with becoming one with the rain that I didn't get mad, I just took off my wet clothes, got a Cognac and turned on the Huskies game muted.

Tonight after I came home I sat on my couch and just watched the rain swirl around the street lamps. This makes me feel very peaceful.

Ha
Ha, I understand.
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Old 11-24-2012, 11:58 AM   #12
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Reminds me of our beloved Corgi's FRAP'ing (Frequent Acts of Play). Suddenly for no perceived reason he would dash up the stairs, run around the room, dash down the stairs, run around down there, and end up panting with a big smile on his face.
Dogs are an endless source of amusement aren't they. The four we've had certainly have been, literally every day of their/our lives...
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Old 11-24-2012, 12:08 PM   #13
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Rather than exclaiming, "The poor man, he looks like a drowned rat" and insisting on toweling you off and getting you a cup of hot tea. That is what my mother would have done, and what I would probably do.

Amethyst

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ISo what does she do? She gets upset with me for needing some food and attention while she was still working on a project!
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Old 11-24-2012, 12:17 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by haha View Post
I feel this way often. I'll be walking along and suddenly I just feel almost overwhelmed by how great it is to be me, alive at this time, in this place.

This fall I have been kind of working on expanding this feeling to rainy, blustery days. Today I was downtown when the sky opened up. I'm looking around and feeling, sure enough, rain and cold is also a very good thing. You feel your not deadness very acutely when you are dealing with some minor physical discomfort. I was soon soaked, caught a bus out to my GF's house, arrived saoking wet and with a bloody toe from walking with soaked shoes. So what does she do? She gets upset with me for needing some food and attention while she was still working on a project! I was so mellow with becoming one with the rain that I didn't get mad, I just took off my wet clothes, got a Cognac and turned on the Huskies game muted.

Tonight after I came home I sat on my couch and just watched the rain swirl around the street lamps. This makes me feel very peaceful.

Ha
Ha, what a lovely and beautifully written post. Thank you!
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Old 11-24-2012, 01:59 PM   #15
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This ought to be in "Life After FIRE," because this is probably a stronger feeling among those who don't have to deal with w*rk BS any more...
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Old 11-24-2012, 04:19 PM   #16
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I feel this way often. I'll be walking along and suddenly I just feel almost overwhelmed by how great it is to be me, alive at this time, in this place.
Sometimes, you have a talent with words.

Basically that is what I try to capture in a photograph.
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Old 11-25-2012, 12:23 PM   #17
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Rather than exclaiming, "The poor man, he looks like a drowned rat" and insisting on toweling you off and getting you a cup of hot tea. That is what my mother would have done, and what I would probably do.

Amethyst
+1

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Old 11-25-2012, 07:32 PM   #18
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I loved this OP Ed in the NYT on the joy of being alive. Nothing to summarize, just a day in the life piece from a guy of a certain age.
Funny but I read this constantly wondering where the "joy" was. However, I am not a "city person". Joy is found in the colorful sunset of a clear desert evening, or the soft distant call of seagulls above the gentle breaking of ocean waves on a warm sunny tropical beach. Dining on a rooftop overlooking the din of the concrete jungle would prompt in me a primal urge to jump off the nearest ledge. A true friend of mine would not be offering me dinner in NYC but rather facilitating my escape back to the real world
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Old 11-26-2012, 05:44 AM   #19
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Funny but I read this constantly wondering where the "joy" was. However, I am not a "city person". Joy is found in the colorful sunset of a clear desert evening, or the soft distant call of seagulls above the gentle breaking of ocean waves on a warm sunny tropical beach. Dining on a rooftop overlooking the din of the concrete jungle would prompt in me a primal urge to jump off the nearest ledge. A true friend of mine would not be offering me dinner in NYC but rather facilitating my escape back to the real world
+1

But to each his own.
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Old 11-26-2012, 06:30 AM   #20
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Joy is found in the colorful sunset of a clear desert evening, or the soft distant call of seagulls above the gentle breaking of ocean waves on a warm sunny tropical beach.
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+1

But to each his own.
Yes, to each his own. I love both environments but like to live in the city.
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