Today I Am 68 Years Old


October 12, 2015; Monday; State College, PA; Borough of State College; Centre County; Fifth Congressional District of Pennsylvania; 6:30 AM Eastern Standard Time, same time zone as Metropolitan Washington, D.C. and NYC; 12:30 PM Toledo, Spain.

[Important. Unimportant. Important. Unimportant.]

Self-image on my 68th birthday
Self-image on my 68th birthday

 

Webster's Cafe and Bookstore barista Grace took this photograph of me last month
Webster’s Cafe and Bookstore barista Grace took this photograph of me last month

In the Beginning

When I awoke at 6 everything was dark. I was alone. The door was closed. I was happy. As a rule, I am most content after I have prepared the night before for waking up. Instead, at 11:30 PM getting to sleep took on a special urgency. Consequently this daytime hospital world emerged abruptly. Where am I? What am I doing here? My  consequential questions suddenly had clarity. It did not matter where I was or why. Today is my birthday.

From the time I was three until each of my daughter s were old enough to vote, my grandmother displayed a reproduction of thes El Greco landscape. The landscape is a symbol of...
From the time I was three until each of my daughters was old enough to vote, my grandmother displayed a reproduction of this El Greco landscape in her living room. The landscape is a symbol of…

Moments of silence

Moments of silence consist of a specialized shorthand. Explaining ratiocination to others requires converting nano-seconds into hours (shorthand into longhand). Upon being conscious of today being my birthday, 67 years of rigorous implanted, well-enforced and solidified protocol went into effect.

Rule number 1, Mother taught, be greatful for being born.

Now at 68 I am an orphan as is the vast majority of my contemporaries. Indeed the rule for birthdays (as for most of life’s occasions) no longer applies. The teachings of the past linger unexamined (until this moment of silence where I decide to leave it in place). The teachings were simple. Presents, parties and fun were fine in their place. However, one has (I have) a moral obligation upon obtaining another year of longevity. The obligation consists of a report concerning the relevant period October 12, 2014 to October 12, 2015.

In the 1970s, I worked on several reports for Congress' General Accointability Office. Unlike the report I edited on the M-1 tank (which gets one mile to every 10 gallons), the personal report on my 86 birthday optimistic conclusion is gratifying although the need for improvement is duly noted.
In the 1970s, I worked on several reports for Congress’ General Accointability Office. Unlike the report I edited on the M-1 tank (which gets one mile to every 10 gallons), the personal report on my 68th birthday’s optimistic conclusion is gratifying although the need for improvement is duly noted.

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