I don't hate the South
Lots of the big-lies-I-tell-myself-to-make-life-easier (but which actually make my life harder) have been busted wide open lately. For example:
1. I am not an adult (yet).
2. I can’t help being busy.
3. I don’t have time to clean more /write more/return phone calls faster/pay bills when they are due.
4. I’ll eventually get around to copying the text from the 40+ journals I have lying around the house into word docs so I can throw them out. (Same goes for transferring mix tapes to digital.)
5. I am just about to finish the songs I started recording in 2007.
I brought my ipod to the gym yesterday. I’d been finding it hard to do all those in between runs. The non-issue trainings runs that require patience and stamina. So this was something easy to pull out of a bag of tricks – listen to music, and “stay within yourself.” Except I never stay anywhere near myself when I listen to music, at least not the kind that I love. So the lie was this:
The reason I don’t listen to music when I go running is because I like the quiet, the time to myself, the chance to let my mind wander. I do like those things, but:
Yesterday I listened to Band of Horses “Funeral”, Bright Eyes “A Scale, A Mirror and Those Indifferent Clocks”, The Cure “Plainsong” and others that are equally beautiful and heartbreaking. The kind that give you a gut wrenching nostalgia, even the first time you ever heard them.
Turns out the reason I don’t listen to music at the gym is the same reason I don’t listen most of the rest of the time (to anything but Putumayo Kids), the same reason Joe from Bayonne won’t pick up his drums in the studio three years after we played our last show, the same reason my parents wouldn’t move into the room my sister and I shared after we moved out even though theirs was tiny and we had the master bedroom, the same reason Alex’s Green Card still has a picture of a 5-year-old boy on it. To say I don’t miss playing (and most days I don’t miss it, I don’t miss it) – well, have you ever read Absalom, Absalom? Hope this doesn't ruin the ending:
‘“Tell about the South," said Shreve McCannon. "What do they do there? How do they live there? Why do they?…Tell me one more thing. Why do you hate the South?"
"I don’t hate it," Quentin said, quickly, at once, immediately; "I don’t hate it," he said. "I don’t hate it he thought, panting in the cold air, the iron New England dark: I don’t. I don’t! I don’t hate it! I don’t hate it!"’