Monday, March 16, 2009

The Plastic Bubble Pathway

BFF Kathy loaned me her copy of The Road by Cormac McCarthy. I had not heard anything about it, although I soon found out that many others were familiar with the book (I think Oprah touted it on her show). I enjoy diving into novels or even films that I know nothing about - without any hype - so that I don't have any expectations.

I am about halfway through. I did not enjoy it, at first. It was too much death and constant ashes and desolation. It was depressing.

Work has been difficult, lately. And frustrating. I feel isolated and cut off from the world now that we are completely restricted from Internet surfing, including from facebook and personal blogs. I want fun. I want escapism. Not the hopelessness of survivors of a nuclear holocaust.

Not to be too much of the drama queen, but I almost feel like the father and son who are traveling in the post-apocalyptic world of The Road. They are cold and lonely and scared and so very hungry and malnourished and not healthy and constantly feeling hopeless. And yet they trudge on.

The story line, in its extremity, is also helping to give me perspective. It's helping me to appreciate many of the little things in life. What if there were to be a nuclear war in our lifetime? And worse yet, what if we were to be one of the few survivors? So many things that we take for granted would be gone.

As much as I don't want to get up for work in the cold mornings, I'm lucky that I have a warm bed to get out of, and walls around me and a roof above. I'm lucky that I have two healthy snuggly dogs to make the bed even warmer.

I've become more aware of - and therefore, more grateful for - the fact that I can stand under hot clean water in the shower, every day, and sometimes more than once a day.

In this specific time in our country's history, I'm fortunate to even have a job to bitch about.

I'm lucky that I get to be in a show, right now, something that is really fun for me. It is my escapism. And all because Quin was willing to share her extra ticket with me and I saw it and loved it and wanted to be part of it, and so I asked the director about submitting myself and two months later I'm performing in it.

Life is not always that direct and simple. Or easy. Or even bountifully excessive.

I'm lucky that I have more than enough chocolate chip cookies to eat on a daily basis (to the point of needing to watch my weight) even if they are the generic brand from Stater Brothers supermarket.

Today, I was grateful for the fact that I still really enjoy the dance music from Britney's fourth album "In the Zone" and that I can easily access my own endorphins by dancing around the kitchen to her frothy bubble gum pop music.

I could go on and on.

And I do. I continue on my personal road, thankful for what I've enjoyed and loved in the past, and thankful for the good things I anticipate in the near and not-so-near future, all while trying to be fully aware and present in the moment.

I'm lucky to have such perpetual and continuing resources to fuel my optimism.


Lori said...

I'm glad I'm not the only one that knows how to look at the glass half full. It's so exhausting to argue with the people that are positive it's half empty.

the Constantly Dramatic One said...

Man, you need to come talk to my housemate. He needs some positivity in his life.

Michael DeAntonio said...

The Road is great book. I haven't read it personally, but, you know, I hear good things.

Cheryl said...

I made the mistake of reading White Noise (also depressing, semi-apocalyptic stuff) during a tough time. Bad, bad idea. And yet sometimes reading about people having an even harder time (and getting through it) can be uplifting. It's all about tone.

Hang in there, and give yourself a healthy dose of escapism whenever you need it.

thelastnoel said...

It's sometimes best just to concentrate on having that warm bed. It may be tough reading a book like The Road, but can you imagine having to write it? You can pick up and put down Cormac McCarthy. Mr. McCarthy is stuck with himself.

quin browne said...

i hope to see you on the 31st... funny, the road is now one of my top three books in my life. i was given it pre-oprah when recouping from cancer surgery by my surgeon. it makes me weep to read it, not just for the content, but, for the perfection of the words.

i'm so glad you are reading it... i'm so glad you are you.

Michael DeAntonio said...

Come back, Petey. We miss you.