I decided to take a mini-vacation from my life today so I drove out to Dekalb to check up on my favorite vintage. Of course I didn't buy anything because I'm feeling ultra Nazi-control-like with my money lately, but I do enjoy being reminded of a past where women's only responsibilities were to dote on their husbands while wearing well-made clothing. Gives me hope for the future.
(Do I have to say JK here? Seriously).
There's nothing like a good drive and shitty radio to put things into perspective. Except when the car that's carrying you stalls every time you stop serving as a reminder that the only thing between you and metal-crunching death is a tin box on wheels. Really, what were we thinking when we invented cars? Wouldn't all that time and money have been better spent inventing teleportation?
Still, a good kick of adrenaline from something other than my current anxieties isn't half bad. The thrill! The excitement! What it feels to be alive!
After my stomach resurfaced from its hibernation during survival mode I stopped to get some lunch. I also then remembered all of the things I had been too preoccupied with staying alive to think about. It's like when you wake up and begin to slowly remember what happened the day before. Everything that you'd forgotten in dream-land shoves its way to the surface like the Loch Ness Monster when he's feeling friendly. Except not all the memories are quite so endearing.
I know I talk about taking things lightly and going with flow, but it's just as hard for me as the next person not to get swallowed whole by the things I can't control that are getting me down. I wallow and I obsess; I imagine a place where I Am In Charge -- or better yet, one where I do nothing -- ; I get depressed and I feel like the world is just a cruel stage where I'm playing the hobo.
And this is exactly what I was doing when I noticed The Beard.
It's hard not to laugh at a good beard. One that envelopes the face, distorts the features and can only bring to mind ZZ Top. This guy's was that. Complete with sunglasses, a computer covered in Grateful Dead stickers and a hippy's attitude (not to say that all bearded folk are hippies, but just to paint a picture). All I could do was smile.
Suddenly, things didn't seem quite so bad (can you SAY cliche??). I even stopped writing my wrist-cutting poetry to make a quick list of things I'm grateful for (one that starts with thong underwear and ends with hot showers).
I saw another bearded guy a little bit ago too. Just as epic. -- OH MY GOD SERIOUSLY THERE'S ONE COMING AT ME RIGHT NOW THAT IS THE BEST OF THEM ALL -- Honestly, I'm done. My work here is done. They come in three's, right? Am I being given a sign that my life's problems will be solved by men in cowboy hats and no chins?
Ok back to the present here. After Epic Beard #3, I called a friend. During our conversation, she said something that brought the whole day back into a point:
"I know it all seems really big and impossible right now but that's because it's both difficult and different. But hopefully at some point it will become mundane in the good sense -- that this is just a part of life. Everything that's new becomes ordinary at some point, and even the bad parts can become that if you just take it as it comes."
So what does that amazingly wiser than me comment and my beard encounters have in common? That all things are both ordinary and completely extraordinary. You just have to find the place where they meet. So when things get rough I say, happy beard hunting!