|Is That a Light Leak?|
The kids are back in school. Country Club College is having its first weekend. The kids are all around looking excited to be back to "normal." They are young. They are pretty. O.K. Mostly. All across the country, the stadiums are ready, too, to return to "normal." The feeling is nice, of course.
I decided to get out of town. With kids back in school, I figured the beaches might be nearly empty. I was wrong. They were completely empty. I drove to my usual beach for the day. I hadn't been in over a year. I thought to get in the ocean water and float, swim a bit as much as my body would let me, get a touch of sun. . . When I got there, however, the beach was gone. The sky was murky with Sahara Dust, and the ocean was in turmoil. The beach ramps were all closed due to outlandish currents. It was a long, wasted drive. I peed and got back on the road.
No matter. I had decided to get out of town. It was difficult. I have some weird "shut in" syndrome that has me fearing to get more than a few miles from the house. I had packed my big 4x5 cameras, and I had brought some medium format as well. There were places I thought to visit for photos. I did. I took a few, almost all with the smaller, medium format cameras. Color. I will develop tomorrow. By and large, the big cameras did not get use. Selavy, In spite of the Saharan Haze, the day was too bright for the Black Cat Liberator.
I drove the small highways, then went to a nearby town. I drove all day, stopping rarely to make a photo. It was important, though, to get out on the road. There was some liberation in it.
When I got back to my own hometown, I bought groceries and some more film, then hopped back to mom's for the evening cocktails and spaghetti dinner. I had picked out a movie to watch for the evening about which I was very excited. I spent over half an hour trying to get it, but apparently it is not available in "my region" (link). So disappointed I could cry.
Frustrated, I let my mother put on commercial t.v. which makes her so happy. I argued out loud with Fox News, and we had a spat. I left the room so she could have some peace. One day. . . I will return to my own home.
I am now in the tenth week of living with my mother. I think we need some space.
* * *
It was another night of terrible sleep even though I took one of the Sand Man pills. My apnea kicked in. I woke choking, breathless time after time. Nightmares interrupted. No matter, though. I picked right back up where I left off. This morning, I have the Sand Man hangover but am tired still. It promises to be a sterling day.
It might not have helped not eating all day and then having two margaritas before dinner, Cab Sav while I prepped and cooked, more with, then the after dinner scotches. I had more liquor than food, that's for sure. Maybe I should get a medical marijuana card. But I can't smoke and the edibles are uncontrollable. Why is it that you can take an oxycontin and feel it within minutes but if you eat THC it takes hours? Can't they do something about that? The whole "medical" marijuana thing is a joke. Anyone can get the card. You just have to pay the money. But it isn't medicine. You can take medicine in public, but you can't smoke marijuana in public even with the card. I'm with Oregon. I think all drugs should be legal. But I also think they should be free. I think the government should just provide them at dispensaries. If life didn't suck, nobody would need them. Just look at Scotland. The weather is so bad there almost everyone is a junkie. I am considering it. I've thought of just giving in to the shit, of just becoming a junky. Hell, almost every kid in the midwest can't be wrong.
In the past few weeks you have probably read about the Asian youth movement away from work to "lying flat." No more "996."
"But kids, you need to work hard to make something of yourselves."
That is what rich people say. "Look at me. I've worked hard all my life."
Bullshit. Rich people have made money off other people's labor. That is how you get rich unless you find gold. Or, once you get enough money like a doctor, you invest and make money for having money. Oh, sure, the markets are uncertain, they say. But as long as they watch me invest, they should be fine. Just do the opposite of what I do and you should stay afloat. But for people obsessed with money, life isn't work, it is like playing a game. It is like being a gambler or a video geek. It is what you enjoy thinking about, what you enjoy doing. For the middle class, even those successful ones who live in the larger houses and have the nicer cars and the trips to resorts, it is a death march, a grinding down.
Asian kids are saying "enough!" The old competitive sense is killing them. They are emulating hippies. They aren't buying things. They just want to lie down and think. The rich are going insane. Who will make them more money? I worked in a hundred degree Coca-Cola warehouse for minimum wage with a bunch of Black and Mexican men once, and I'll tell you something--hard work didn't make any of us rich, but Coca-Cola did alright.
So here's what you do. Get yourself some lawn mowers and weed whackers and a big truck and go to Home Depot and get yourself some workers. Put a sign on your truck that says "EnviroLawn" with your phone number. When you start to get clients, drive your workers to the job. Oversee their work and talk on your cell phone. When they are finished get everything back into the truck and head off to the next job. Charge $140/lawn to start so that you undercut the other companies. Pay out half of that to the workers. Later, when you pick up more jobs, get two trucks and more workers. Get a foreman to run one crew. You will have to pay him more, but not as much as you make. Stay in touch with him on your cell phone. When you have enough money, you can start doing landscaping, too. More workers, more money. One day you'll pick up some commercial accounts. You can tell people you worked hard to build your business. You can buy a bigger house in a better neighborhood, a big fishing boat, etc. Then, one day, people will say, "Oh, yes. . . we know Bob. He owns EnviroLawn. Hell of a fellow. Started that business with nothing. He has investments now. I think he's decided to sell the company."
Just make sure you get some of that "small business" money from republicans before you tap out.