Sunday, March 25, 2007
I just cleaned out my address book. I noticed that I had names in there that I haven't called in over ten years. People who have moved off the continent, couples who have divorced, some remarried, and a few names that, frankly, I don't even know who they are. There was one entry that just said, "James." And next to it, it said, "Call after six." For the life of me, I have no idea what that means.
Certain letters in every address book get filled up right away. "M" and "S" are very popular letters for example. There's no room. You can't get anyone new in there, there's a waiting list of three, four years. If I meet someone whose name begins with "M" or "S", I tell them up front that we can't be friends. I just don't have the room.
Whereas "X", "Q", and "Z", I can move you in today. I've got nothing but space. And I am dying to uses those pages. My dream is to meet the Xylophone family and fill that section right up.
There's something very satisfying about starting a new address book. It's like a new calendar: all fresh, clean and full of boundless potential.
I've noticed as I get older, I buy next years calendar earlier and earlier. There seems to be more things to do, and we need more time to plan them.
When you're a kid, you don't have this problem. You can buy a calendar in March--there's no big rush. Remember your first calendar? One appointment: "See that? That's my birthday. Otherwise, I'm free. I'm absolutely open till the fifteenth."
But the older you get, the harder it seems to be to make the simplest of plans. I bumped into a person I have known for a few years but hardly see the other day.
"Hey how's it going? Everything good? You're good? Family good? Kids good? Good. I'm good, Everything in good."
We just bombarded each other with "goods". "Every thing's good? Good, I'm good, your good, it's good we're all good." There is no time for details, just headlines. "Anybody we know die? No? Good. So, everybody's good? Good."
Some people actually want to tell you how they are. And you might not want to know.
"How are you, good?"
"Actually, I'm just getting over an intestinal virus. . ."
"Oh my, would you look at the time! I thought I could squeeze in a flu story, but it turns out I can't. Later."