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Thursday, June 7, 2012

Wings of Desire/Don't Dishonor The Day

It's Thursday - at the office - last week before I have to vacate this place and turn it over to the new owners. Feeling both sad and happy about it - sad because it's the end of something, Sarah being a mini mogul - at one point I was Ameritech's 2nd largest agent with fourteen employees cranking out orders for them. Happy because this place has become an albatross and I'm relieved to be rid of it - don't need the space and expense of it.

So, no writing group last night - calendar played a trick on me. We meet the 2nd and 4th Wednesdays of the month and last night was the 1st Wednesday. And grrrrr....AGAIN I missed my eggs! Once a month, I get four dozen eggs from a farmer who drives down from Wisconsin - it's my equivalent of a drug deal - we're instructed to enter a certain alley from the north side and there is a quick transaction. This is about the fourth time when I've failed to show up at the appointed hour and when that happens I forfeit my eggs that I've paid for in advance ($20 for four dozen). What's worse, I have to eat grocery store eggs for the month. Next month I'll have double alarms on my phone so I don't forget.

Just got a call from the Illinois Department of Employment.  They did an audit because a fellow who did contract work for me applied and got unemployment after the contract was over and I no longer needed his help. Now they have decided to recategorize every single payment I made to any contractor as wages. That includes monies paid to the gal I hired to create my website, payments made to a guy who has his own company specializing in databases and spreadsheets - got his name from a bank client of mine who uses his services. Unbelievable!....I'm livid. Many days I absolutely hate the bureaucracy of being a business owner - you just get screwed right and left. No one realizes that it's little companies like mine that are the backbone of this country. Draconian laws and  over-regulation can only have the effect of putting us out of business. I've always been a good Democrat, but this is a classic case of over zealous government.  It's irresponsible! I'm pissed.

These days loving my kids, loving the weather, keeping my head in the game with all the changes in my life. Every day I wake and admonish myself - "don't dishonor this day". And that's a good concept right? Every single day is a gift. I know I'm sounding like a Hallmark card, but think of it. Because our days come predictably, one after the other, it's easy to be jaded and not treat each one as special. If, we live to 80, we will have received 29,200 gifts - an absolute embarrassment of riches. Easy to be unimpressed - we treasure what is rare and hard to procure and if we're healthy our days come with almost boring regularity.

Friend I spoke with Wednesday talked about how rare it is to find love - most of us will only experience it a handful of times in our life. Some of us will never experience it. When it happens, your brain explodes with gladness, flooding your entire body with happiness. And when it happens, you know you just hit the jackpot, got three fruits on the slot machine of life. We treasure falling in love because it is elusive and hard won. But days? It's easy to be complacent about something you get 29,200 of. - easy to say, "Yeah, yeah, just another day - there will be another tomorrow and the day after yet another". But, what if you were an angel with a hankering to come to earth and experience all that humans feel? What if you'd spent an eternity watching people, longing to taste, feel, smell, touch? Then you get your wish - you're given ten days on earth - ten amazing, wonderful days to be an inhabitant on this gorgeous planet. You would be a kid in a candy store - you would rush to the chocolatier to taste ganache - you would lick the foam off a latte, smell the back of a baby's neck, relish the wonderfulness of a whirlpool bath. You would lay in the warmth of the sun, run through the rain, fall in love, cry in a movie. You might even want to experience sadness or pain and inflict violence - at least harsh words to experience power. Mostly you would pack as much "feeling" into those ten days as you could.

There is a movie I love that precipitated that idea (angel longing to be human). It's called Wings of Desire, a 1987 movie directed by Wim Wenders. Here is a description - I encourage you to watch it.

The film is about invisible, immortal angels who populate Berlin and listen to the thoughts of the human inhabitants and comfort those who are in distress. Even though the city is densely populated, many of the people are isolated and estranged from their loved ones. One of the angels (Damiel), played by Bruno Ganz, falls in love with a beautiful, lonely trapeze artist. The angel chooses to become human so that he can experience the human sensory pleasures, ranging from enjoying food to touching a loved one, and so that he can experience human love with the trapeze artist. The film is shot in both a rich, sepia-toned black and white and in later scenes, color, with the former being used to represent the world as experienced by the angels…..When he sheds his immortal existence, Damiel experiences life for the first time: he bleeds, sees colors for the first time, tastes food and drinks coffee. Meanwhile one of the other angels, Cassiel inadvertently taps into the mind of a young man just about to commit suicide by jumping off a building. Cassiel tries to save the young man but is unable to do so, and is left haunted and tormented by the experience. Eventually, Damiel meets the trapeze artist Marion at a bar during a concert and they greet each other with familiarity as if they had long known each other. In the end, Damiel is united with the woman he has desired for so long.
These days=sad still, but so grateful to be here with all of you. I honor each and every day, do my best to give the day its due. Grateful for the gift.

Challenge today is thinking of just that - are you just going through the motions, waking, working, following a routine script, then falling into bed at the end of an unremarkable day?  If so, then I would say, you screwed up because there is no such thing as an unremarkable day.


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