Morning Thanks

Garrison Keillor once said we'd all be better off if we all started the day by giving thanks for just one thing. I'll try.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Dreams and visions


The Twins played a day game yesterday, not that I'm a big fan. I can't name anyone on the team, not even a star. But I've heard them on the radio more in the last week than I have in my entire life because there's an old guy--why do I think of him as old?--across the bay who throws in a line from his boat dock every night, sits quietly in a lawn chair, and cranks up the Twins on the radio.

Since nothing stops sound on a lake, I get the play by play on the other side, which is okay. Lately, they've been playing the Brewers, and my mom is so religious about them that she'll stop almost anything--even a telephone conversation from her son--when they're on. Religious is a word I shouldn't use right there, I guess; my mother, who is 90, certainly wouldn't like it; but if being religious about something means spending immense devotion on whatever it is we're talking about, Mom's qualifies for Brewer sainthood. Anyway, I'm sitting on the boat, knowing Mom is watching the very same game in her Wisconsin old folks' home, and there's something satisfying about all of that. Don't ask me who won.

But I've also been thinking that what the old guy across the bay is doing doesn't sound like a bad way of life during one's retirement, living out here and throwing a line in from the dock every night, while listening to the Twins or Minnesota Public Radio. At first, I thought the guy's ritual made him a real Garrison Keillor character, especially when I heard him yell at some other old fart down the shore on Saturday night, telling him that the giant Northern they both know but never catch was coming his way--then laughing. Here's an assignment, write a one-act about those two old farts on the dock. I think I could do that.

But it's not a bad way to retire, I'm thinking. Write half the day, putter around during the afternoon, and at night watch loons and ducks and bald eagles--and a red bobber as it swoops and dips when the legendary Northern toys with a fat nightcrawler or some slimy leech.

Of course, you've got to clean the fish. I could handle that.

The Bible says your old men shall dream dreams. Does that include the Twins on a dock?

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