Saturday, December 24, 2016
I don't know how many friends I have. I get confused on the point. I'm willing to be free with the term if someone wants it. But in my heart friends is all blood brothers for life and that sort of thing. Do I have a couple of friends out there? Sure.
I never know what to make of all those people at the library I work at. They've always been mostly co-workers, but things can drift into the more personal. I'm a personal person. Even with the patrons I'm inclined to be real. Professionalism is the structure, a kind of support, but I am the body, having, in my heart, to represent everything. Only those who deny my humanity get presented with a cold bureaucracy. And many people like to banter or chat with me, but who will swear allegiance to me? Who is specific? Among all these relationships spanning belligerence to sympathy what does anything mean? What do we share?
There's always culture. Last weekend my favorite, only soccer team played brilliantly. It was a gorgeous game by the greatest collection of athletes on the planet. Who could I share this with? For this team, Barcelona, there was only Marcus, the teen librarian, to share it with. But he's frequently off doing librarian things with local schools, prisons, vagrants, hobos, and literary gadflies. He's a librarian about town. So when it looked like he wouldn't be in on Monday I was a little crushed. How much did I want to talk to him? Well, I can talk. But I mostly just wanted to exchange that look of feverish fandom, that understanding that we'd just seen something otherworldly. By some miracle he showed up in the late afternoon. I walked past him. "Did you see that!" I exclaimed, needing no reference.
"This is what it's about." He replied.
Tonight I came across a bluegrass band called The Dead South. "What a great song!" I exclaimed about In hell I'll be in Good Company. "I have to tell Dave. Dave would love this like me!"
Oh, but Dave has been gone for years.
So I'm telling you.