You must learn not to be so superficial as to judge me, my friend, if we are to remain friends and peers.
To my friend, Terese Bozdas.
Once I stood on the trembling ice
Of a mountain torrent in winter
Surrounded by granite boulders
And dared the wild waters to drown me.
I had lost my wife.
I had lost my home.
I had lost my hopes.
I had lost my dreams.
And I dared the wild ice
Beneath me to break.
It is curious how you can sometimes
Be so numb the desire to die
Is the only thing
That makes you feel alive.
It was only when you came to me
Some years later
Singing songs of friendship,
Singing songs of compassion,
That I felt at last
The rebirth, the renewal
I want to bark
& snarl & growl
Until the world
Clears a path for you.
(About a 7 minute read)
Guys, I apologize for a bossy post title, but I just could not resist the alliteration. A good phrase has so often been my undoing in life. Twice, for instance, I said, “Make it happen!”, at the worst possible moment.
“Make it happen” is one of my favorite phrases. I stole if from my younger brother. My bro is superb at making even seemingly impossible things happen. But twice, I’ve said it when I should have thought before I said it. “Do you, Paul, accept this woman as your lawfully wedded wife…”.
“Make it happen!”
“I’ll take that as an ‘I do’. You may now kiss the wench.”
(About a 6 minute read)
The first I noticed that Geri — our sales office secretary — might have a more than usually interesting sexuality was when she put Chicago’s “Daily Sex Tips Hotline” on every speakerphone in the office.
That’s to say, Geri went desk to desk, dialed the Hotline’s number into all of our phones one after the other, and punched the “speaker” button. The whole office was soon singing, “Men often do not play nearly enough with their partner’s breasts and nipples…”.
I was thinking tonight what if I happened to be fondling your butt and we were lovers, but not really friends. Would I be fondling your butt any differently than if we were friends?
And I think, yeah, I think I would be. I think — if we were not friends — I would be fondling your butt mostly for my own sake. But if we were indeed friends, then I’d be fondling your butt for both our sakes. I would want us both to win.
Just a reflection I had tonight after overhearing someone yesterday at my corner coffee shop tell her girlfriend that she didn’t want to date some guy because he was her friend — and she didn’t want to risk losing him as a friend.
Hah! Wish I could fondle her butt! I’d show her the error of her ways!
(Inexplicably, she declined my offer of participating in a scientific experiment to test her hypothesis about sex and friendship. Even went so far as to call me “a dirty old man”! Me! The twenty-somethings these days! Not at all as friendly as we were back in my day. She wouldn’t even tell me her name. There are no sensible people left! It’s all cold, aloof wackos out there now! Nutjobs and wackos!)
All the best,
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: Paul offers his take on the morality of putting people to narrow uses, such as only being interesting in someone for sex, or only for their entertainment value.
THE CRITICS GO NUCLEAR! “Once again, Paul Sunstone has taken it upon himself to discuss morality. Hence, once again he has taken it upon himself to load a high calibre rifle with a shotgun shell. Typical Sunstone, he is oblivious to the fact the shell didn’t fit, and he is just as oblivious to the fact his notion of morality does not fit the moral requirements nor standards of human nature. Sunstone is proposing a moral code for bacteria.” — Gus “Gunning Gus” Johnson, The Blog Critic’s Column, “Leper’s Gulch Gazette”, Leper’s Gulch, Colorado, USA.
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: Paul offers his opinion that people today have all too often come to treat each other as interchangeable, faceless grains of polished rice.
THE CRITICS EMOTE! “De hunne of blogging, Paul Sunstone has excreted yet another one of his innumerable atrocities upon the world. The immediate effect that ‘Our Lives Have Broken’ has upon the honest and orderly reader is to provoke him or her to yearn for the nearest body of water deep enough to drown in. Sunstone is the refutation of the thesis that history is progressive. He is the refutation of the dialectics of both Hegel and Marx. A Spengler would see in Sunstone the decline of the West, and he would be correct.” — Johanna Meyer, Der Blogkritiker, “Die Fussen-Welt”, Fussen, Germany.
(About a 4 minute read)
This is how I explain it to myself. Suppose you meet someone who soon delights you, but who you do not in any way think of as “yours”. She’s not (at least not yet) your friend, or your lover, or your colleague, or your boss, or your employee, or your client, or your teacher, or your neighbor, or your — anything. She delights you, but — as we sometimes say — she means nothing to you.
Let’s say you met her because she sat down at the table next to you in a coffee shop. Glancing over you see her take a novel out of her purse. “What a striking cover! I’ve never seen another like it. Is it a good read?” A conversation starts. A few minutes later, you are thinking she’s an easy-going, down to earth, and rather delightful person.
(About a 20 minute read)
Many a beautiful friendship has sprouted from awkward soil. In fact, most of my deepest friendships in life have begun clumsily.
I know of no inviolate law of nature that dictates the conservative beige panties of a young school librarian cannot possibly be the start of a profound bond between her and an insufferably horny 14 year old boy misfit. I know of no law that states such a thing cannot happen.
Yet the very last thing on my mind when Sharon’s angry voice shook me awake that Spring morning was, “This is the start of a beautiful friendship”.
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: Paul describes the strategy he used to beat a far brighter and more favored boy in order to become his high school’s chess champion.
THE CRITICS IGNITE! “In ‘Death of an Arrogant King’ de Hunne of blogging, Paul Sunstone professes himself to be a grandmaster of chess. Shame! Shame! In sincerity, he is ein Hun who has pushed boredom to new and astonishing levels. He has made boredom a form of barbarism. He has weaponized it. An orderly society would crucify Sunstone. Crucify de Hunne just as he himself shamelessly crucifies human decency in the process of excreting his innumerable boring posts upon the world.” — Johanna Meyer, Der Blogkritiker, “Die Fussen-Welt”, Fussen, Germany.
“You’ve been a good friend to me.” — Teresums
If it is your wish to remember me,
Remember me when you are 60
And I am gone.
Gone except for my shrunken head
That you obscenely choose to hang
By a cheap hemp cord
From your car’s rear view mirror
Because it amuses you to watch me bob
In profoundly glaring disapproval
At the indignity of your
Triumphant, cackling laughter
For having lived to bury me.
If it is your wish to remember me,
Remember me when you are 60,
And I am gone.
Then and only then do the gods, my dear,
Begin permitting we mortals such weighty observations
As “You were a good person for me to know”.