The hundred year old man that lurks just below my surface wanted to punch a stranger yesterday. I should let you know that he is always near by and hates most things. He is a child of the depression so he has little time for new stuff like technology or fancy ways of getting things done. He is the reason that beer snobs bother me so much and why I would love to boil my life down to a single bag of possessions. I’ve come to call him Gus because that name itself is distilled down to its essential elements.
No I’m not crazy. yet. I started down this road a couple years ago when I noticed that a lot of celebrity creative types had alter egos. Some think its part of what makes them stand out at their chosen field of performance. Even writers sometimes scribble under a different name to try something new or just to mix things up. Whatever the reason, cuckoo makes me smile so I began to think about my own…
I landed on the cranky old guy because that’s how I feel from time to time. Especially during prolonged periods of stress. Last night I drove downtown to pick up the middle child from school. Traffic turned a half hour ride into a two hour stop and go roll so I was a little tuned up already as I entered the parking garage. After parking I rode the elevator down to the street. When the doors opened I was rammed by an idiot on his phone.
Completely looking down he must have raced into the car when he heard the ding. He hit me hard enough to fumble his phone and then had the nerve to look up at me with hard eyes. I stared at him waiting for an apology that never came. That’s where dreams of a solid facial shot drifted across my brain. I think he was more upset about the interruption in whatever communicating he was doing than his breach of human interactivity. I was pissed.
Knowing that I needed to reset myself before I saw my child I let Gus out for the walk down the alley. Mental ranting about the constant need to be in contact with everything except the world around us. Virtual idiots. Overpriced devices making us slaves to someone else’s idea of how a life should be lived. I actually let one of my personalities convince another one that his own stuff is getting out of hand. (I think that breaks some law of multiple personalities but I always confuse those with time travel. sorry)
I didn’t use my phone the rest of the night. Ignoring notifications that mean nothing in the grand scheme of my existence. Today as well, I took a step back from my electronic leash. We managed to do some pretty incredible crap in the world before we were so connected to everything and just maybe because of that fact. You don’t hear a lot about people getting lost in a project for hours. Singular focus on solving a problem with no distractions seems like a thing of the past.
Watching my children do homework with three other things going on exhausts me and I wonder what it will be like for their kids. Enough already. I need to hit publish before this mounting full body douche-chill about exposing Gus forces me to delete this. I’ve always felt that the ones that sting a little to put out there are probably the most fun to read.