Tuesday, December 29, 2009
The last day
Today is my last day with the braces on my teeth! It gets me thinking about a lot of things.
One is I am remembering the circumstances in California that made me wind up with these braces. I got them because of this woman, this opera singer, in California who loved Leonard Pennario. This is funny, just now I almost wrote I got them "in a roundabout way" because of her. But the truth was, there was nothing roundabout about it. I got them directly because of her!
It is kind of a nasty story but it all worked out in the end. Because tomorrow the braces are coming off, God willing, and I will have straight teeth.
You always have to get that "God willing" in there! On account of you never know, as the saying goes.
So that is one thing I am thinking about, why I got these braces on my teeth. The other thing I am thinking is that it is funny, you never know when your life will change or what is ahead for you.
I am not talking about change for the sake of change. I hate glib slogans like "Change is good," or "The only thing we can count on is change," stuff like that.
When people say things like that to me I want to grab them and shake them. Change can mean anything! The planes flying into the World Trade Center, that was change. Vatican II, that was change. The Jews being loaded into boxcars and taken to concentration camps ... there, you want change? There's change for you.
Saying "I like change" is like saying "I like... stuff."
So that is not what I mean! I mean that momentous things can always be around the corner for you. I was thinking that when Leonard died. I thought: isn't this strange, this is one of the big deaths of my life. There is a phrase for you, the big deaths of your life. It is a funny phrase but it is true. There are big deaths in your life, milestone deaths when your life is turned upside down, and this was a big one. And I am sitting there thinking, a year ago I did not know this man.
The fall when I met Leonard was another funny time when things happened to me. In the space of two weeks two big things happened: I met this mysterious old pianist, and I went to my first Latin Mass. The Latin Mass came first, about a week and a half before. Both things changed me.
Here I was in my, ahem, 40s. You think your life is settled but it is not! I got married, was one thing that happened to me. And then all this other stuff happened.
Things had happened before that, too, that knocked me on my ear. I never would have predicted the line of work I would be in. Another big thing in my life was going back after being out of college for 15 years and resuming my piano studies and becoming a better pianist than I ever was as a kid. That was something I had never dreamed I would do.
The things that happen to you, the people who come into your life! It is amazing when you think about it.
All this philosophizing!
Philosophizing, on the eve of my big day!