Yesterday I was wistful about it, about certain things, but as the day wore on, dragged by, I felt my spirit reviving, and by the end had regained my characteristic perkiness. The dismal day could not change my essential character, which is one of perkiness.
I'm thinking in heroic terms about it. I the hero stand tall against the wistfulness of a downer day. One of the coolest things in heroic stories is where the hero is heroic even when he could take the day off. There are plenty of people who'd put their tails between their legs and slink off, in a manner of speaking; I'm not saying people have tails, although you've probably heard about the vestigial stuff about the tailbone and what it supposedly was for back in the days of Adam and Eve.
But getting back to the heroes, think with me of one of those stories where the hero is really offended. Someone offended his honor. Maybe dripped ice cream on the leather of his stagecoach. He's offended about it and says to the guy, "I demand satisfaction!" He wants to go head to head, toe to toe, in a duel to the death! I've seen shows where they even do that if someone whaps them lightly on the mouth with a hankie. "Now I definitely demand satisfaction!" So he kills the guy and rides off toward the sunset. And back then the sun always looked about three times as big as now, so he had to be brave, because it got pretty hot when you went west in those days.
Satisfaction. That's a great word. I'm sated, satisfied. Put that "-fied" on the end of a word and you're speaking of a process that has come to a completion. Snickers satisfies. That's a promise inviting putting it to a personal test. Check and see. OK, I'm unwrapping a Snickers, now munching on it. Umm-chew-good, very good. It is satisfying, at least I'm sensing something satisfying about it so far; the process is still underway. Now I'm down to the last little bit, one last bite, and in it goes. Umm-chew-good, very good. Swallow, and to the belly. Let me sit for a moment. Now I will walk around the living room. I've got a peanut in my teeth, need to pick it out with a pen here by the TV. OK, I'm ready to say, having eaten the Snickers bar, that, yes, Snickers satisfies. I am satisfied.
As far as my hiatus goes -- I am very satisfied, very satisfied indeed thus far. To be free -- completely free -- of all responsibilities as far as the duties from which I am now abstaining, that is a satisfying thought, and I have made the thought a reality.
It really helps, though, that I woke up with all kinds of an angry mood. I am angry at everyone who has put me down. I've been pushed, pulled, folded, spindled, and mutilated. I am angry at everyone who has ever told me what to do. I am angry at the machinations of those who think they know best. To do what? To stifle, to confound, to impose, and to block. I know I am right and I don't need to be told otherwise. When I know the truth, I know it. I'm not blocked from knowing it. I can glimpse in a flash exactly what the truth is about principles, ideals, bedrock stuff.
Being angry is also a very satisfying thing, very satisfying. And the longer my hiatus goes on -- put this in your pipe, please, and smoke it: I'm not ending this hiatus anytime soon! -- the more satisfied I hope to be. In that sense it's a process going on, though with satisfaction all along the way. I am very satisfied, and I hope to be very satisfied more.