Yeah, so I haven't written anything in a while. I'd love to say it's because I've been monumentally busy*, but that's just not true. The truth is that once the weather breaks, I spend as much time as possible outside - I stop watching TV, stop goofing off on the computer (for the most part), and just bask in sunny goodness as much as I can. Fortunately, I even have a job that demands I spend a fair amount of time outside. But my weekends are now devoted to barbecues, baseball games, and mowing the lawn.
But I've been thinking about something for a while. It struck me a few days ago... I was sitting on my back porch, sipping the first of a few beers, watching the dogs wrestle on the lawn and listening to the Red Sox on the radio, with the sounds of suburbia in the background. It was a picture of tranquility. It was almost heavenly. And something popped into my head...
"How the hell did my life come to this?"
It's really sort of bizarre. I mean, I spent a good deal of my life growing up in a suburb just outside of Boston, wishing to get out of there, wanting desperately to live in the city. I went to college in Madison, Wisconsin. Not a bustling urban mecca exactly, but not a corn field in Iowa either. I lived in Boston, in Cambridge, in Philadelphia. I loved the city. From the age of 15 to 22 my life consisted of school, punk rock shows and extensive and varied drug use. For god's sake I used to have purple hair, four piercings and buy my clothes exclusively at the Army-Navy store. I went to grungy bars and drank myself senseless on a regular basis, while sporting Misfits t-shirts and Minor Threat posters on my walls.
Now? I live on a street so quiet that it's almost eerie. I turn the radio in my car down when I turn onto my street because I don't want to bother the neighbors. I fret over my lawn. I get annoyed at my neighbor when he doesn't do something about his dandelion problem. My idea of a great night is a barbecue with my wife, followed by a quiet drink on the porch while listening to a baseball game. I avoid loud bars like the plague, and I've been to 2 concerts in the last ten years. For fuck's sake, the kids down the street come over routinely so they can play in my back yard with my dogs. What the hell? Ten years ago, I'd have said that letting your kids come to my house was a surefire way to begin their descent into hell. I have a garage full of equipment for maintaining my yard. I chat with the neighbors about schools and property values. I have a career. Jesus, I have employees. Don't these people know that I'm basically a completely irresponsible fuckup masquerading as a grown-up?
I mean seriously... what the fuck?
Because here's the thing. I was sitting there that night, all this stuff clanging around in my head, thinking that I was on the verge of a pre-mid-life crisis, wherein I'd freak out and quit my job and drive across country or end up flying to Singapore and dying in a haze of opium and transvestites (oops... sorry Matt).
I feel like I should have been pacing the cage like a wild animal. But instead, I simply took another sip of my beer, put my feet up, and listened to the final innings with a big grin on my face.
*quick, name the movie!