August 23, 2013

Enough: The '60s baggage returns

The 60s once invited images of groovy times, free love and "my way or the highway." Yes, the 1960s defined life for us.

Apparently, the 60s continue as a defining statement for us and our blogs. The search for living a significant life consumes.

A 60th birthday becomes the last milestone by choice for one man. What is unusual is he documents his decision making and leaves his biography for us. 

Martin Manley spent years in journalism and left us a pre-paid website so we will remember what he wants us to remember about his life and his death. 

What would you write for your last words?

Did it take courage?

Bill and Carol Mitchell also are in their 60s. They, too, chose to change their lives and to blog.

They left jobs, a big house, a hot state for  A Year In A Room 

Does it take courage?

I am not contemplating suicide. I do understand the desire to leave footprints

I know I am not downsizing ... yet. I am not leaving the familiar to try on a new city, a new way of filling the days or moving out to new experiences.

I think about the courage it takes to say enough ... Enough days.  Enough stuff. Enough.

Sorting out who you know

Some people are good at remembering the people who cross their paths. 

I am not. I want to remember when we met, how we met, why we met. I want to map the relationship to help me recall.

I rarely want to let go of anyone, even those who want to go, who should go, who should have gone.

It is hard for me to clean out my Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn and all the other placesI hooked up with folks. I have address books from college, from first jobs, from other lives. 

I am Twittering again, or trying to is perhaps a more accurate statement. I see who has stuck around there and I remember vividly why they are there. Seeing their name reminds me of conversations once deemed important. There are 1,000 or so names there today, following me on Twitter 

Yet if I were asked to name 1,000 people I know right now I don't think I could. I need the prompts of the social media tools, my new address books.

I want to hold onto "old friends" even as I struggle with choosing a topic that will be worthy of a tweet. 

I want to yell about the senseless beating of a teenager, the anguish of parents, the outrage of what the law allows.

I want to share the joy of a couple on their wedding day, the absurdity of picking up 24-packs when 12-packs are ordered and the exhaustion that creeps in to steal all motion from legs that stop listening to my brain. 

Instead, I watch people whitewash their pasts. I wait. I wait. I stop. 

Then I start again.

I remember. I write. I connect.