The Life is the Story

The Punishment of Sisyphus, source: Wikipedia

The Punishment of Sisyphus, source: Wikipedia

I had to give up caffeine because it was giving me anxiety and sleeplessness, and I positioned it as a way to be less of an ass to my family, a kind of sacrifice for them, which was part-true. But now, on the best Saturday of the year, I’m online pushing my pen around because I don’t have the devilish distractions of house work, yard work, or work-work.

And it is like that Greek myth of the guy pushing the boulder up the hill, that’s the pointlessness of reconstructing the house or losing myself in the details of the yard. So without the caffeine, we just sat on the sofa as the sun came up and two hours went by, Dawn and I talking, dreaming about Europe.

I got back from sunning myself, remembering the black, volcanic sands of southern Italy, how the kids were so young they just spread it all over their arms so that it bound to the lotion and clung there. The pointlessness of sunning ourselves, the two or three options of things to do, like going down to the sea, going to the bar for a drink, or just flipping over.

I had to put my phone down and didn’t remember where, I didn’t care. The kids didn’t thank me for their milk and I didn’t care about that, either. And I went to the den to the corner of the sofa and put on The Pixies, and went to another time when I was younger and coming around the bend, seeing the Atlantic ocean for the first time and that feeling of freedom, that anything could happen and probably would, and there was more of it than I could drink in, then.

I wrote in the corner of the sofa so my kids could see me sitting there barefoot and writing, moving my hand like a puppeteer, creating characters and complications, funny voices, scenes.

I wrote to feel better and feel myself after what feels like too long, too many days getting older too young in life, too early, the times you catch yourself in the mirror and realize you’ve changed, that’s because of you.

I sat in a spot on the sofa where the sun hits and makes a greenhouse effect, where the dog naps illegally, so much so it dips. And while it seemed a crime in Seattle to be inside on a sunny day, it felt good to shun the world of pointless tasks.

And I thought about my boss, watching him walk up the hallway for a 4 o’clock meeting yesterday, how he walks with a swagger when he adjusts his belt and lifts his chest, and it’s because he’s full of himself in the best possible way, doing just what he should so that he’s become fulfilled, and really shines a light of contentment on everyone around him.

I remembered a time I probably looked that way too, when you feel you can do anything because of course you can, you’re right. But you have to feel that way for it to be really true, whatever you do.

The singer sang a song about flying, a dream about death, how the mountains and trees look from up above, the view of the soul looking down from up there, how it feels when you learn to see that way, when you learn to let yourself go.


As a punishment for his trickery, King Sisyphus was made to roll a huge boulder up a steep hill. Before he could reach the top, the massive stone would always roll back down, forcing him to begin again. The maddening nature of the punishment was reserved for King Sisyphus due to his hubristic belief that his cleverness surpassed that of Zeus himself. Zeus accordingly displayed his own cleverness by enchanting the boulder into rolling away from King Sisyphus before he reached the top which ended up consigning Sisyphus to an eternity of useless efforts and unending frustration.

 — From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Categories: writing

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

5 replies

  1. Nice to see you so peaceful


  2. this nice piece feels calm and accepting of yourself and your life. i’m glad.


Leave a comment!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: