My choir, Amasong, is singing a setting of "The Peace of Wild Things" by Wendell Berry. This is a lovely thought, but there's one line in particular that grabbed me - about the wild things, "who do not tax their lives with forethought of grief." Why do we do that? As a worrieuse extraordinaire, this has special resonance for me. I suspect most people have some sort of urge to try to think some things through - you know, preparation, planning, whether just for resource expenditure or for something more subtle and lovely like anticipation of something joyful - but then there are those of us who grieve unnecessarily. What's the evolutionary advantage of that? What do we get out of it? I know what I get out of it: sometimes, it spurs me to think through a problem, all the way through to some possible solutions, or some sense of resolution or peace. But the other times, I grieve. And life is too short for that.

Fake Pretend Thanksgiving is coming up on Sunday and I have been trying to figure out what I want to say when it is my turn to talk about what I'm thankful for. Nothing leapt to mind immediately, which is rare for me, so then I started thinking about what has been going on this year, waht most of my significant experiences or thoughts have had in common, and I think the theme is change. But the question is, of course, am I grateful for that? No, actually, I'm not. I don't hate it or dread it, but I can't look my fellow celebrators in the eye and say I am thankful (honesty is big at the FPT table - tears, hugs, reaffirming hand squeezes, you name it).

But I am thankful for a variety of new experiences and thoughts that have come my way in the last twelves months (or, technically, ten, since last year's FPT was actually in January), whether gleeful (yes, it is the nineteenth century here on Pies Men Like) ones or gut-wrenching ones or simply ones that made me think about something in a new way. So that's what I'm going for at FPT this year: I am thankful for all the things I haven't done before, the people I didn't know, the opportunities I hadn't tried - sweeping or small, for a moment or for months - and even things that maybe no one really knows I'm excited about, or would ever guess were so important to me, but that are truly engaging and meaningful and have become part of my life.

And to relate these two thoughts - appreciating new experiences helps me not to grive, not to worry, not to freak out. It helps me with my demon of wanting to know how everything will end up or what's going to happen. For example, if I had known in April that by this fall I would have forgotten most of what I learned in my Spanish class this summer, I might not have bothered to take it, or I might have laid awake at night worrying about how I could keep myself from forgetting or about whether I was wasting time by even trying if I wasn't going to stick with it enough to be able to use it a little bit. But that would have been the lesser decision. Even if I nunca remember how to conjugate anything other than the present tense, I still got to stretch my brain, make some connections bewteen French and Spanish, meet some cool people, learn about some of differences between European and everyone else's Spanishes. Those things were all worth it.

I don't mean that I have overthrown my tendency to read the end of books first for a completely centered, in-the-moment outlook. I can't imagine I could ever do that. But if I can enjoy and engage even the slightest bit more than I fret, if my overall balance in life is tipped more towards enjoy than towards worry, then that is thank-worthy thing indeed.

And on a far shallower note, Sex and the City is on and Carrie is tying Big's tie as he gets ready in the morning. I. Love. That. That is one of the very best moments you can have with another person.

I rambled about other stuff too. Wanna see?

April 2004 May 2004 June 2004 July 2004 August 2004 September 2004 October 2004 November 2004 December 2004 January 2005 February 2005 March 2005 April 2005 May 2005 June 2005 July 2005 August 2005 September 2005 October 2005 November 2005 December 2005 January 2006 February 2006 March 2006 May 2006 June 2006 August 2006 October 2006 December 2006 February 2007 April 2007 May 2007 June 2007 July 2007 September 2007 July 2008

projects, friends, etc.

  • I love Bollywood so much that I made a separate blog for it.
  • remember when I went to Australia?
  • when you take grad school too much to heart re: literature
  • when you take grad school too much to heart re: travels
  • The Trophy Wife
  • rock and roll lifestyle
  • Why God Why
  • Technically not a friend, as not a human, but still a place I love very much, so it counts: Massey College
  • credits

  • Blog design is based largely on Not That Ugly with some ideas from Firdamatic with some additional tweaking
  • Flickr rocks! Really.
  • Hurrah for Blogger
  • And for folks trying to library-ize blogs: Blogwise and Blogarama
  • Sorry this looks like poo in Firefox. I've no idea why.