Keepin’ Up with the Joneses

Keepin’ Up with the Joneses

Phew! I am beat. And I just realized that I hadn’t even posted a word about the miracle of all miracles that happened last Tuesday night. Yes, I admit, I was a naysayer. I mean, come on, last time had burned me (us) badly, so out of self-preservation, I had to keep up my defenses. But holy. shit. Barack Obama won. Unbelievable and so fucking awesome!

As you might have suspected, his speech brought me to tears. Watching Obama, I honestly felt like I was in the presence of greatness (Come on, who can argue that Obama possesses that “it” factor, on top of being brilliant and polished and inspirational though I do wish he would change his definition of “marriage”…). And right as I sat there, overwhelmed by the genius of this man, the newscaster revealed that Obama’s speechwriter (oh yeah, I guess he doesn’t write all his own shit… duh!) is twenty-fucking-six years old!! So you know me, the weirdest things kick my ass into gear. Or rather, plenty of things trigger my inadequacy buttons, and yes, I have lots of them. When these hot buttons get pressed, I just suddenly feel so much urgency, like a panic, about my life. Like, what am I doing? What am I accomplishing? How can one person do so much in one day, in one decade, and I have nothing to show for? These are the questions that run through my mind. And so, I resolve to do more and to do better. You see, last August, my panic button went off with Michael Phelps and his million and one gold medals. The reporters said he spent like 30+ hours/week in the pool. His coaches were so deliberate in cultivating his athleticism– right down to planning when weight-training would play into his workout program! You see, all these considerations went into his development as a successful swimmer. There was planning. There was patience. Even though his fame came practically overnight through this one huge international event, Phelps and his coaches had prepared for this for years. And all of it just reminded me that people succeed due to a combination of factors, some of which incudes luck and chance and circumstance, but certainly, most do not succeed without discipline and diligence.

And so what did I do after Phelps made me feel inadequate? I started walking 2-3 miles daily with Bub and the pups. Seriously, if some dude can swim 30+ hours/week, I can certainly wake up an hour earlier to squeeze in 40 minutes of walking, you know what I mean? So now it’s November, and while we don’t necessarily walk every single day, we do walk regularly. And Bubbey has even shed some pounds to prove it.

Anyway, now that Barack Obama’s speechwriter has given me a complex, I’ve decided to get back to my learning to do list. Spanish has been on my list for ages, and for the last month, I’d been dilly-dallying over whether I wanted to take a week-long immersion course in Mexico over the holidays. After Election night, I booked the damn thing. Seriously, enough with the back and forth… life is passing me by, goddamnit. So, that feeling I mentioned earlier, that one of urgency, I finally moved on it. That’s the thing: there’s a lot I want to do in my life. And maybe I will never be the best or the most talented whatever, but I need to try harder. If anything, I need to keep the ball rolling…

I’m tired (John and the pups and I went on a challenging hike this afternoon), but the night is young. Hell, it’s only 8:30. Surely, I can squeeze in a lesson or two of Chinese. After all, even fricking ancient John McCain was on the go for a YEAR campaigning…

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