Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Wrestling And Rasslin' With My Hiatus

Thank you for stopping by today. I'm amazed that you found this blog, because in the last month or so it's mostly been abandoned. When you've found yourself here you've found yourself in one of the loneliest backwashes of the internet, where there's a lot of forlorn birds standing one-legged on fence posts, looking bleak against a gray sky backdrop. One sits alone this morning, overlooking a mostly mossed in northern fork of a lake, and a lone carp does that whole thing of coming up and slowly gulping at the surface.

What's happened to make it like this -- this blog -- is that I made the decision a little over a month ago to go on hiatus. For various reasons, some of which I can't even recall -- it's been a real stew -- I felt that I needed the time off. I was heavily involved in the lives and personal clinging of some of my readers in real life. I was cranking out a newsletter for those who felt the severe hunger we get in our media-deprived world. And of course I was right here, day after day, endlessly on top of many issues. It turned out that I had some abilities to guide people spiritually and psychologically, so there for one beautiful moment in time I was cashing in on the whole self-help fad.

But for me, it turns out, the more I give, it's not necessarily the more I get. That drying, mostly abandoned lake is a picture I resonate with. The hopelessness, the fear of the future, the feeling that you're being sapped utterly and completely -- these are all feelings that make up the average day for me. And you know, below the surface of any lake dwells all kinds of bottom feeders and very funky troubles in the mud at the bottom. The bottom of a lake like this can have bubbling underwater heat pockets and it can happen that a hole will suddenly appear and suck down the lake's precious life water. You see that ... and you see a lone bird standing one-legged on a fence post ... and you know that life can be a real downer.

So I took the time off. That's the hiatus. Ya-ha. I say that facetiously. Because nothing about it has been quite right. I've been up, I've been down. I thought I'd made peace with it, that I'd come to grips with it, etc., only to realize that it's still an enormous struggle. A little while back I did a very good study on the difference between wrestling and rasslin'. Those thoughts keep coming back to me, with this strange conclusion: that I'm both wrestling and rasslin' with my hiatus. Both!

Wrestling is a gentleman's sport, sticking out your dainty finger as you minuet around the ring and eventually come to light grips and apologetically take the other guy down. Rasslin' is when you're a couple of braindead gladiators and you're sticking your finger in the other guy's eye -- what will fit of it -- and you're dull to human feelings as you despoil the other guy in a worthless heap.

Wrestling is being finicky about whether your toe brushed the out of bounds line and insisting that you be released via that technicality. Rasslin' is carrying the other guy to the line, crashing him down well beyond it, then picking him up and delivering him downward at 100 mph with his butt bearing the full impact of your positioned knee. Then killing the ref for good measure.

Wrestling is to shake hands with your opponent, or lightly bump knuckles, or touch foreheads, or give light shoulder taps, and afterward go out for a glass of milk and wish each other well for the evening. Rasslin' is to take the guy's hand off, nail it to a board, retrofit inside it the workings of one of those old Billy Bob fish plaques, then push the button and watch it flop around while singing "Take Me To The River." Meanwhile the other guy is sitting in a bar with a bloody stump plotting his revenge, which he hopes will include after the next match him nailing something else to a Billy Bob plaque of his own, specifically a center protuberance and two hanging sidekicks.

This's what my hiatus has become, both wrestling and rasslin'. The good and beautiful, wrestling. The bad and depicable -- but always more interesting -- rasslin'.

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