I got this hand while playing with Dad. Should I just quit now? I can’t imagine ever getting a better hand than that.
On the edge
For more than 15 years, I’ve ridden my bike. It started as a practical move to avoid buying a second car, but over time evolved into more than a hobby; it became a passion, a cornerstone of my identity. For me, bicycling has been a port in the storm, a refuge and relief, a way to meditate and dwell in the present moment and let go of the future, a mental health coping mechanism. It was community, friendship, connection, a regular group of people who I came to know and care about. It was freedom and joy and as close to flying as I could get.
Going through some papers, I found this:
Me: Benji, what do you think this is?
Benji: A CD?
Benji: A VHS?
Benji: That technology is too old for me!
Honestly, it’s probably best that whatever’s on that floppy disk stays there. It is definitely some story I wrote in high school that should never see the light of day again.
Tomorrow will be better
Today was an exhausting emotional rollercoaster of a day. Our divorce finalized. I connected with three separate groups of friends. I learned that, very likely, I’ll have to give up biking or my artery will keep getting worse. The cherry blossoms at the UW were beautiful. I guess this is life.
A tale of two packages
In the interest of continuing to confirm regularly that I’m alive (for definitions of the word exclusively referring to physical, not emotional, life), I thought I’d try to occasionally share some photos here until I started having independent thoughts again.
These photos actually have an amusing “apartment living” story to go with them. Here goes.
A while ago, I dropped my beloved 2014 Kindle Voyage, a device that had worked flawlessly that entire time. When the screen cracked, at first I thought I could live with it, but it turns out the touchscreen functionality broke, leaving me able to only page back and forth in the book I already had open. (Bright side, I finished that book on the broken Kindle just fine!)
Thoughts on the ending of Lord of the Rings
When I’m sick, I listen to the BBC dramatization of Lord of the Rings. I’ve listened to it so many times, I can fall asleep and wake up later and not miss anything. So, as is my tradition, I started listening again when I felt terrible after getting my COVID booster shot on December 31, and I’ve listened on and off in free moments since then.
When I was younger, I always wished the story ended with Aragorn getting crowned. I wanted the happy ending, with no baggage or lingering pain. It bothered me that Frodo wasn’t happy after getting rid of the ring, that the Shire was damaged, that the elves’ magic had to fade away, and that in the end Frodo and Bilbo and all the elves had to leave Middle Earth. It’s not how I wanted the story to end! Where’s the unalloyed triumph and happiness?
Pictures from January
I started to write a post that turned out so much like reading a blow-by-blow of a train wreck that I think we’ll just go with a few pictures from the last few weeks.
I didn’t take pictures of the zilllions of days of dismal 35-degree fog; let’s go with some optimism here.