In traffic

I like taking stock of the things in motion around me. In traffic, this is good and vital. In the rest of life, this amounts to frequent “reality checks” (am I awake? am I dreaming?) and an awareness of the new stuff generated by my ongoing interests. If all that glurge about life being a journey rather than a destination is at all true, then this is one example of the engine propelling me forward on the journey.

What does that mean?

Today, I’m spending the morning catching up on last night’s Phish show in Mansfield, Mass. I’m also watching the third round of the Open. I didn’t watch last night’s Guardians game (and probably won’t rewatch it or anything today), but I’m reading up on highlights from the 6-5 win over the Tigers. They play again at 4:10 p.m., so maybe I’ll catch the first few innings and see how Cal Quantrill is looking. Those are just three examples from the past 24 hours.

On the surface, those things (and more) are very important to me. Phish, golf, Cleveland sports. Sure. But what I’m trying to say is that it’s helpful to use objects in motion as a way of staying grounded in the present. As Phish tour rolls on this summer, I can follow along and stay rooted to the moment. It’s July 16; there’s a show in Bangor, Maine, tonight, and there’s last night’s show to check out. Separately, of course, there are decades of Phish shows to experience, but it’s the present moment that interests me most.

The Open, one of four majors in professional golf, is not only fascinating this year but places me in a richer summertime context. I feel part of something.

And it’s baseball season. The passage of the Guardians from one game to the next is just an echo of my own day-tight compartment transformation. Following the narrative keeps me tagged playfully to my own story.

That story including, naturally, the first six weeks of Louisa’s life. Having a child, I’m finding, is the ultimate story and a perfect illustration of what I think I’m saying here. Each day is different, even if the journey is a singular object in motion.


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