Happy convenience store day! First off, I live in Minnesota and I have some acquaintances who worked with Philando Castile. They had lovely things to say about him, including his love for the children he worked with at JJ Hill. My heart breaks for his family, and all the officers down in Dallas who were killed in a disgusting display of revenge while protecting a peaceful protest. I feel bad for everyone involved. Nothing makes violence acceptable. Murder, killing, racism, vengeance, these are all old world ideologies and actions which will someday be purged from standard society. I firmly believe human beings are capable of a sustainable peace and kinship. Life is inherently precious. As a budding Buddhist, and reader of Herman Hesse, I will share this quote: “gentleness is stronger than severity, that water is stronger than rock.” – Herman Hesse, Siddhartha
- Concluded a little book fair at the Robbin Gallery where I’ve been the writer-in-resident for over a year now. It was a lovely event. The weather was sticky and humid, like a jungle had bloomed over the short grass. For some reason near the gallery there is a small army of flies that love to bite me. I wore shorts to the event, and was constantly dancing around defending my legs from their onslaughts. It was driving me nuts. I was happy when other people in shorts appeared at my table because then they inherited the curse. Sales were great at the book event, which was called Art on the Lawn and part of Whiz Bang Days. I sold out of the Greenland Diaries: Days 1 – 100. This made me happy. People of Robbinsdale really wanted to know what it would be like if their neighborhood was invaded by plants and faceless monsters.
- I’ve been driving my twin boys around recently in our minivan in the grand effort to give my wife a break from watching them all the time. I usually drive around till I can find a mostly empty parking lot to sit in. Once the babies are asleep, I’ll play my 3DS or write. Sometimes, I’ll find people doing rather interesting things as they walk around parking lots where they think they are alone. Usually, people itch or adjust themselves in odd places. They tend to be physical areas one does not prod while in public. From a distance, my van looks empty, but once they see me inside of it, they tend to get very embarrassed and flee, even if it means cutting across the entire parking lot to avoid me.
- Managed to hurt my back last week at work. Back pain is one of those ailments that echoes your mortality with a concrete note. The small of my back pulled tight and my legs went numb. It was a terrifying feeling. As you get older, pain gets pulled into this exponential time warp. I liken it to engaging in a heavy night of drinking when you’re 21 versus 31. When you’re in your early 20’s, you can party all night, wake up, and go to work on three hours of sleep. When you’re 31, you’re wrecked for an entire weekend, and you feel like death is stalking you with a laser cannon in the wilds of South America.
- Pokemon Go came out. Nintendo once again proved why it still is the major trend setter with video games. I’m currently playing my way through Pokemon Y on 3DS, which is amazing. My wife and children are playing Pokemon Go rather religiously, and they want me to join in. I can only handle one Pokemon game at a time however. I feel like I would need some sort of intervention if I dedicated myself to Pokemon Go as well. They’d be in my dreams, my reality, and my virtual reality. There would literally be Pokemon everywhere. I feel like Gary Oldman from The Professional yelling, “EVERYWHERE!” Instead of his famous line from the film, “EVERYONE!”
- My sons have started walking and getting into everything. What a challenge. I’m constantly chasing them around. My wife does an amazing job with them. Children expose so many of the hidden subtleties of the world you never knew existed. They’re so open to joy. Dancing to music. Falling on pillows. Peeking at you from behind a couch. All the actions are so innocent and playful, you forget how lovely the world can be, and how there is magic around every corner.
Have a good week everyone. Stay safe. – Patrick