Thursday, November 15, 2012

Summing Up


In the midst of an email discussion with my Improv team about meeting up at a food truck rally, one team member mentioned he was writing while on a date at a Park Slope bar.  When pressed for details about said date, he revealed that, " of times, worst of times comes to mind."

I don't know how that tension plays out on a date, but I do know how it plays out in life.  Not that I'm living in a Dickensian depiction of the French Revolution, exactly, but nevertheless - the phrase feels somewhat apt, as of late.

* * *

Beks came to midtown and met me for a workday lunch.  Over bowls of Thai curry, she asked, "What's new?" and I gave her the highlights reel, the "best" of my times: some exciting performance opportunities, fun creative projects, weekend getaways, a litany of lectures I've attended recently that are still running my motor, dinners out with friends, trips to the theater, a book I read that captured my thoughts completely, long walks in a park that I'm lucky to live just two blocks away from.

But when she looked at me intently and asked, "Are you doing ok?"  I had to shake my head and answer in tears.  No.  Underneath the busy-ness of those good things, there is hurt, there is longing that is loud; there is that frustrated feeling of being "stuck"; there is isolation, there is bruised faith, there are unanswered questions, there are tiny grievances, there are big fears.

It is the best of times and the worst of times.

* * *

It's that both that I've mentioned before; a good and a bad - existing together - in tension.

I've been thinking about it again, frequently, as I weave through midtown streets before and after work.  And I've been wondering about the math of it: why this good + bad doesn't net zero, exactly.  One might expect them to cancel each other out, leaving you neutral.

But no - the bad doesn't erase the good.  Neither does the good necessarily temper the bad; bad is still bad.  A success in one area of life can't always be a salve for a wound in a different area.

You feel them both - best and worst - together, at the same time.  And you're anything but neutral.

1 comment:

Robin aka Gotham Girl said...

Missed you posting...thinking of you!