The Flooffield

The Flooffield (floofinition) – Floofish floof rock (flock) band formed in Floofdon in 1984, who achieved commercial success, mainly in the United Floofs of America, in the mid-1980s to 1990s.

In use: “One of The Flooffield’s first major hits in the UFA was “Floof Love”, which reached number seven on the Floofboard Hot 100 charts in 1986.”

Closure

First, a commercial interlude. I’ve been watching Hulu late at night, streaming Fargo. Interesting commercials come on, then. One of them is about Peyronie’s Disease. In the commercial, men are holding up carrots, bananas, and cucumbers. The fruit and vegetables look straight, but the men then turn them to reveal sharp curves. A voiceover says something like, “Does your erection have an unusual curve or bump that it didn’t use to have? Your erections shouldn’t hurt.”

It’s eye-opening.

I never thought about what my erection looked like. Naturally, this commercial made me wonder. Also, my erections never hurt. It’s scary, though. Nothing is safe.

The things I learn from commercials. Maybe I should watch less television. (Sure, that’s the answer.) I pulled out my computer (did you think I was going to put another noun there?) and googled PD to confirm it existed.

It does.

Okay, on to the main event.

I’m a Do-It-Yourselfer.

I’m not a very good one.

Whether it’s writing a computer program or a novel, fixing a car or a wall, painting a house or building a computer — which are things I’ve done — I usually achieve decent results, but it’s a messy process.

I have a few reasons that I think is behind all this.

  1. I’m self taught, but I’m not a very good teacher.
  2. I’m an impatient person.
  3. Whenever I asked for help as a child, Mom told me, “Figure it out.” Like most moms, she thought I was smarter and more capable than I really am. I started believing her.

I was painting our kitchen when I broke my arm in July. Painting the kitchen can be violent, can’t it? What transpired is that our kitchen window is five feet wide and four feet tall. The window looks over the front proch.

A blind was installed for privacy, light, and all that. The blind is one of those that can be pulled up by a cord on one end, or let down by a different cord on the other end. I think the official name is something screwy, like two-way blinds. I don’t know. Look it up.

The thing is, when I re-installed the blinds with my wife’s help after painting the kitchen, one end didn’t get correctly placed in the bracket. Whenever you pulled the cord to raise and lower the blind on that end, the blind bent down. That irritated me. Thus, “I will fix!” I decided.

Climbing onto the counter, I removed the blind and discovered that the brackets weren’t properly aligned. Easy fix, yah? Off I went for the appropriate screw driver to loosen and adjust the brackets. Except, I couldn’t turn the damn screws. They…WOULD…NOT…TURN. But I’d reinstalled the brackets. If I screwed them in, I should be strong enough to screw them out.

Damn it. With rising irritation, I turned to jump down off the counter to get a better tool. When I did, I caught my foot on the counter, setting into motion the awkward crash that broke the bones in my arm and twisted my hand up against my arm, sandwiching it between arm and body.

After that it was pain, hospital, splint, recovering, therapy…

Here we are, three months later. That damn blind was still down. It was driving me crazy.

My wife and I had talked about asking someone to put it up or hiring someone. Neither had happened. She was out yesterday, socially responsibly visiting friends (masks-distance-outside on a private deck). I walked into the kitchen and saw that big window and the brackets where the blind should be installed.

Time to fix it, I decided.

First, a pep talk.

One, I had to be careful. If I fell and hurt myself, I should just face up to it and end my life, because my wife would probably end it for me.

Two, I had to be careful, because I didn’t want to get hurt. I was nervous, which didn’t help, because…what if I fell? I’d never live it down. (I imagined going to the Emergency Room. “You again?” they would exclaim. “What did you do THIS time?” It’s weird that I imagined that. I’ve only been there once in the fifteen years that we’ve lived here.)

So, I told myself, BE CAREFUL. Take your time. Stay in the moment. FOCUS, fool.

I did. The brackets were adjusted and the blind reinstalled. It took about fifteen minutes.

I showed it to my wife when she returned home.

“How did you do that?” she asked.

“Just put on my splint, got the tools, climbed up there and did it.”

“Did you use a chair to get up and down?”

“Of course. I’m a professional.”

“Were you nervous?”

I smiled. “What do you think?”

It was very satisfying to fix the blind. I believe they call it closure.

The Lost Dream

My wife and I, with some friends and cousins, were in a temporary place. Cats were accompanying us.

It wasn’t a great place. An older building, it had a bug issue. Its brown rug was a little worn. Fresh paint would be welcomed on the walls.

Temporary, old, but comfortable, we were grateful for the shelter. Part of our gratefulness and acceptance was that we knew a change was due. We just needed to endure for a short period.

The cats were busy playing and eating. My wife went off somewhere. I took up residence with the cats in another suite of rooms. Why? These things weren’t explained. I was watching television and trying to kill an insect that bugged me. (Yeah, sorry for that pun.) I worried that the insect, something with many legs and a pincer was a threat to the cats. That’s what prompted me to attempt to kill it. But I was trying to kill it gently.

That didn’t work. The thing got away, going under a piece of furniture and disappearing. Meanwhile, I had a huge television turned on and kept surfing through offerings. My wife and cousins returned. A disjointed conversation ensued. I understood it (I think) in the dream but it’s hazy now. The essence of it was that we were in the wrong place and needed to go to the right place. We divvied up tasks. I took the television, carrying it to the next place, with a promise to return for the cats.

I knew the way, yet took a wrong turn and became lost. I was supposed to be able to go from the wrong place to the right place without going outside, but I’d ended up outside.

A light, early evening rain was falling. Trees and bushes overhanging the walkways gave some shelter but water was gushing over gutters and out of drain spouts. Protecting the television, I navigated the paths, yet couldn’t find my way.

Discovering an open door, I slipped into there, thinking that I had to return to the inside. I was in a garage. Trying another door, I entered a dining room. A family was seated at the table eating dinner. I apologized to them, explaining that I was just cutting through to return to the inside.

Amenable to my use of their house as a shortcut, they barely paused in their meal except to reassure one another that it was alright. Leaving their house, I found myself in familiar hallways and knew where to go, and that everything would be okay.

Wednesday’s Theme Music

I’m a pop child, you know? Born in ’56 in the United States in a lower middle-class household and living mostly in suburbs, I grew up as television and radio matured. When Mom cleaned house, she turned on her records and sang with them. Throughout the years, I heard her with Patsy Cline, Pat Boone, Johnny Cash and Johnny Rivers, Tony Bennett, Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra, Chubby Checkers, Louis Armstrong, Tammy Lynette, Ray Charles, Johnny Mathis, Barbra Steisand, the Ink Spots and Four Platters, to list the ones that jump casually to mind.

Then there was big sis. Two years older than moi, she started listening to the Beach Boys, the Beatles, Dave Clark Five, Herman’s Hermits, Simon and Garfunkel, and Grand Funk Railroad. Boys, interested in this attractive young woman and usually a year or two older than her, brought more music in, like the Spencer Davis Group, John Mayall and the Bluesbreakers, and David Bowie.

The radio was always on in the car, and I received small transistor radios from Japan as birthday gifts. AM radio gave me some bubble gum pop like the Osmonds, the Archies, and the Jackson Five, along with Elvis Presley, Glen Campbell, Don McLean, Steppenwolf, and the Temptations. We had the Bee Gees, the Rolling Stones, and The Who. Television brought along Ricky Nelson, the Monkees, and all manner of performers via variety shows like Ed Sullivan, Hullabaloo and American Bandstand. Movies got into it. Friends introduced me to Sly and the Family Stone and Three Dog Night.

I explored on my own as I aged, discovering Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple, Black Sabbath, Cream, ZZ Top, Mountain, Captain Beefheart, the Moody Blues, early Electric Light Orchestra before they became ELO. More performers came onto the scene, like Elton John.

That’s just a little taste. Music was everywhere then, as it is now, always on, part of the foreground and the background, part of the scene, a topic of conversation. All of this is just on the pop and rock side. Beyond it there was country and western, soul, rhythms and blues, and the blues, and all the offshoots and variations. Beyond the United States were vast seas of music to be found in other countries and continents. Concerts gave us destination. Dancing gave us dates.

Music enriched existence. Oddly, all this came from a 1977 Paul Simon song, “Slip Slidin’ Away”. Time has fled through the year. Whether it’s because the days are less structured or because the usual placeholders of American culture have been disrupted, it seems like time has accelerated. Here it is, already more than halfway through the tenth month of the year. Just two more months and ten days to 2020 remains before we’re kissing it’s ass good-bye and saying hello to 2021.

Yet, we have an open-ended agenda at this point. COVID-19 has disrupted normalcy. The U.S. elections are due. We’re into the thirty-first named storm of the ‘hurricane season’. Climatologists are predicting wilder, more violent, and less predictable weather. With all that’s happening, water and food security for many of the world’s creatures are being jeopardized.

So, you might see why I’m thinking of “Slip Slidin’ Away” might have slipped into my thinking. Opportunities, time, and hope seem to be slip slidin’ away. Some might claim that sanity and peace are, too.

Certainly, it feels to me, probably because where I am in life, the days seem like they’re slip slidin’ away.

Here’s the song. Yeah, it’s a repeat. Used it back in August, 2018. Wear a mask please. And as they once said to the point it became nauseating, have a nice day.

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