Iíve been thinking about getting a new laptop. I have a really ancient desktop that I still use. It just needs to be reinstalled, but it will never be able to run anything more than XP. The screen of my laptop is cracked. I couldnít tell you exactly how it got so cracked. I just opened it one day, and there it was; a giant crack across the screen.

Anyway, so, prior to that, I figured, Iíd spend a couple of hundred dollars on some new desktop parts, Frankenstein it with some of my old desktop parts and have a new computer. The cracked laptop screen halted those plans. Even though Iím usually not one to do a lot of computing while travelling, I like to be able to move around the house, plus, I kind of like being part of the same millennium of other computer users.

Iím still trying to figure out the specifics of what I want. Adam had a couple of friends over on Sunday, and one works for Sony. He can get me a good deal on a VAIO. I like Sony products, but only buy them when Iím splurging because of the price.

So, yes, Adam had some friends over on Sunday. Adam is like me in the sense that he moved during the later part of his developmental years, but never became a native of his new home. In his case, he went from New York to North Jersey, which holds a much bigger distinction in his mind than it does in mine. However, he is clearly not native to the same place of these two friends of his. They are thoroughly North Jersey and I canít help finding the whole stereotype really funny. Not that I donít see the humanity that is clearly there. It makes me wonder about people who try to blot out their own humanity by covering it with a stereotype, though.

Yesterday, I was really, really worn out. Saturday was a day of climbing, and Sunday, we started out with meditation and Frisbee in the park, then house cleaning, then his friends showed up, and I played my first game of Ultimate Frisbee.

I often forget that Iím actually much more athletic than I perceive myself to be. I always equate sports with gym class. Gym always meant feeling awkward, fear of injury and pointless competition.

I know Iíve complained about it before, but itís almost like gym class is designed to get kids to hate any kind of physical activity.

In my adult life, I was given the option of starting out slow, and I think thatís true in most adult situations. Adults allow you to take things in whatever way you want to take them.

I could practice the basics of anything (such as throwing a Frisbee) without being thrown into a real game and expected to know how to throw, catch, remember the rules (which I still find confusing) and cope with people moving around and yelling, all at the same time. I think I get sensory overload much easier than the average person.

I have trouble climbing if people are on the ground ignoring me and talking to each other. If someone starts talking to me, itís downright impossible.

In karate, you start with the basics, and you work on the basics for a long, long time. Youíre not forced to spar your first day (although, maybe that happens in some of the meaner schools). In gym class, they have you doing everything the first day, and youíre school age, so youíre already coping with the burden of learning self-awareness on top of it.

Anyway, as far as Frisbee goes, Iíve become comfortable enough with just throwing and catching, where I can take on other the other burdens. Itís kind of an amazing thing to realize that all this time that I havenít been hopelessly uncoordinated. I just wasnít given the opportunity to learn in a way that suits me.

Itís incredible how we always have the opportunity to reinvent ourselves. We can always do things that we thought we could never do, and be things that we never thought weíd become.

Speaking of which, my brother emailed me over the weekend to let me know that my dad fell ill. He had some kind of alcohol abuse induced pancreatic thing. Heís supposed to fast for several days to clear it up. I called him on Sunday. He wasnít hospitalized, but staying in a hotel, fasting on his own. My brother emailed me again today to tell me that now he has been hospitalized.

Itís so strange how my dad was never one to value life, not even his own, but now heís talking about how heís going to quit drinking. He actually used to words ďalcohol abuseĒ in reference to himself, for the first time, ever.

It did occur to me that he is quickly approaching the age that his mother was when she died. She died of cancer, fairly young. Iím sure thatís occurred to him, as well. Joe actually mentioned that our dad suddenly seems afraid of death, when previously he always seemed to be inviting it. I guess itís partly because humans never believe that they are really going to die.

Despite that, given history, we have no reason to believe anyone will survive life, we always believe ourselves to be the one exception. When we realize we arenít going to be the one exception, a lot of stuff changes. I canít really say how, but I think itís a big turning point in a lot of peopleís lives.

I suppose a lot of people die before they even realize that theyíre going to die, too.

I donít know how I think about it for myself. I was always very much aware of my dadís mortality. Drug-addicts and alcoholics donít last long. I think thatís pretty well-established.

Anyway, ever since Adam and I came back from California, weíve been trying to do more regular meditation and I think itís helped us both considerably. Heís been really restless in his sleep and even had trouble sleeping last night. Thatís unusual for him, so Iím guessing that the meditation is starting to dig some stuff up. Itís a necessary part of becoming who you are, but itís always kind of painful.

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Tuesday, Jul. 07, 2009 at 10:55 AM