Managing the Magic and the Mundane



"It's hard to live a life."

I count myself as fortunate to have been the sole audience to this statement.

It was as if I was being told a secret that was hiding in plain sight.

At the time, the speaker spoke with no air of complaint, no appeal for pity.

It was as if he was relating a simple, universal truth about the nature of
being any one of the myriad creatures alive in the World.

I have come to appreciate the power of this truth.

When it consciously precedes my speaking, it breeds in me empathy for all things.

It grows kindness in me.

At my best, when I acknowledge this truth to myself, I take up the challenge
of my own life with great resolve and conviction.


It's been some time since I felt capable of communicating articulately here.

The big physical life changes have passed, but the feelings will linger for the foreseeable future.

Rarechild and Catfish are no longer married. That is all I have to say about that. That's their business to speak of if they choose to, not mine. I only mention it because it is a truth and it changed many things.

I care about each of them immensely.

Catfish and I haven't spoken in months. Perhaps in time. I miss the company of my friend. He is a good man.

Rarechild now lives a few cities closer to me and it is a good thing.

Our lives continue to follow similar paths and we share as much life together as we can. We make good partners. That I have such a friend to help me navigate hard choices is a blessing.

I have more to say, but it will have to wait until next time.


Active member
Hugs-sorry to hear and happy to hear.

I saw your post and couldn't resist clicking on the off chance there was something poetic and alluring.

Glad you posted!


Active member
Catfish and I haven't spoken in months. Perhaps in time. I miss the company of my friend. He is a good man.

You are both good men. Indeed, it's good to hear from you again, Charlie!

I've been in touch with Catfish and he was doing well when last we spoke. It's been a couple of weeks and I owe him a text/email/call. I'll let him know about your update.


New member
Baby steps forward are often undervalued.

Difficult times can hit us all, through nobody's fault. Sometimes life is just very bloody hard. And acting with dignity through hard times is no baby step.

Dignity is impressive.


One small step for a man

I live with a very old friend.

15 years ago he took me under his wing and taught me how to take care of his very big, very old home. It is a labor of love, a gentle, frustrating art that requires much thought, patience, and skill. I have come to understand old buildings as living, breathing things. Like people, they are idiosyncratic and need to be fussed over.

After many years of doing different things elsewhere, I am now the live-in caretaker of his building and its six apartments. When I moved in, his alcoholism had reached a point of no return: he had stopped working, shut himself in, and succumbed to depression. He was a mess and so was his building.

If you have been witness to the ill effects of the illness we call alcoholism, then you know the collateral damage it does. It is a painful process to watch. Friends and loved ones begin to turn away when they can no longer stand to participate in or be witness to the chaos. During my tenure here, my friend has fallen countless times, collecting wounds like merit badges with each crash to the floor. His last gravitational test earned him a trip to the hospital with a broken hip...

We cannot save other people from themselves, nor can they save us. To believe so is a kind of folly, usually a folly of kindness. Those of us who care deeply often care for others more than we care for ourselves. In the end, all we can do is this:

Reach out, lovingly, while our loved ones cry out in pain, and say to them, in a kind of whisper or shout, "I have noticed that you are standing on your own foot. Perhaps you could stand in some other way that would be more comfortable?"

A broken hip was the best thing that could have happened to my dear friend. He detoxed safely in the hospital and began the long road to mental, physical, emotional, spiritual, social, and personal recovery. He has stumbled, but he has recognized his value to the world around him.

It is nice to have my friend back.

I, for my part, conspired with others to convince him to get a kitten.

Kittens, in case you are not aware, are kind of a big deal.
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