Hard to believe that Sharaun and I will be married ten years this year. Veterans. Pillars. So long together now, if you count the years we dated (subtracting that self-imposed “break” around ’95 that she won’t let me talk about much), that I’ve been with her as long as I haven’t. Sixteen years without, seventeen with. Something to be said for longevity – and perhaps forgiveness and long-suffering too – I suppose. I know, this paragraph reaches for continuity… but those ten years are the first thing I think of when I think about how it’s now two-thousand ten. That, and that Keaton will be four and I’ll have been ten years at my job. Or, is a “career” now? When does that line get crossed?
I read Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises for the first time over the weekend. Made me half wish I could spend a year drinking my way around Europe, bankrupting myself halfheartedly chasing fleeting passions, having impossible conversations with a cadre of equally sloshed and disenfranchised comrades. But in addition to daydreaming about being part of the perennially-tight “lost generation,” reading the book piqued my interest in good literature again. I found myself once again wanting to read. I made a trip to a couple used book stores in town on Saturday, but came up short. A visit to the library was disappointingly equally unsuccessful. Not to say there wasn’t plenty of good reading to be had at each stop, just that I couldn’t find a single one of the ten or so tomes I’d set out to acquire.
Then I wondered about downloading books… maybe reading them on my iPhone or something. At first, I wrote off the idea as stupid. Who’d want to read from a screen, let alone a screen as small as the iPhone’s? But, later that night as I lay in bed I decided to re-download the Stanza application for the phone. As a test, I grabbed a free book from Project Gutenburg – Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka. At right around 100 printed pages I figured it’d be short enough to use as test. Stayed up reading it in bed and, as I finger-flipped the last “page” I realized that, yes, I think I could read books on my phone. I immediately set about finding some of the stuff I’d been out amongst the brick-and-mortar searching for. Oh, it’s all there, but unfortunately most of the works carry a prohibitive pricetag.
In short order, however, I found a way “around” that and was able to load up my phone with all manner of classic and “modern classic” literature. I’m actually pretty excited to have a pocketful of good books with me at any time. Now to see if I can truly adapt to reading things this way… I’ll keep you posted.
A couple paragraphs I wrote on the iPhone over the course of the weekend, to round things out:
Saturday we woke with an idea at grand plans on the day. Something as a family, something fun for Keaton. We took our time in the morning. I made coffee and Sharaun and Keaton had cereal. I read a little. By and by it was 10am and we thought we’d better firm up plans. 11am and some discussion later and we were no closer to anything material. We ate lunch and after that everything fizzled. We played a few games of memory together and ended up running errands and shopping for dinner. A Saturday to remember. Maybe next weekend.
Work begins back this week after what feels like a fantastically drawn out hiatus. I’m not exactly eager. I feel a bit too disconnected from what’s going on. I’ve felt this way before and it always passes naturally as I wade back in. Not sure where to get started, but it’s coming up on annual review time and I guess that’s about as important a piece of work as you can dig into. A good start, I suppose, to numb me back into the day-to-day of corporate infinity.