Thursday, July 12, 2012

The Path of the One-Trick Pony

As a father, among the things that pleases me most of all is that both of our young adults spend their work day-to-day in a career that each enjoys very much.  There might be days that the politics (intentional use of the small "p") of the job grind on them but they do not lose sight of the big picture.  They remain fixated on the fact that they are doing a thing that they love doing and they do not allow one less than spectacular day bring them down.  I think that in a perfect world we would all earn our living doing something that we love to do.

I have practiced law for close to two decades now.  At the risk of sounding immodest, I am quite good at what I do.  I have little love for it however.  Close to twenty years after it became my work day-to-day I must confess that I cannot recall when I last had a love for it.  If in fact I ever did. 

Do not misunderstand.  I love the law.  But "the law" and "the practice of law" are as likely to be mistaken for one another as Newark, New Jersey and Newark, Delaware.  In practical application, the former has only a very, very little bit to do with the latter.  Some days it appears to have nothing at all to do with it. 

There are in fact periods of time during which I feel nothing less than actual disdain for how I earn my daily bread.  I am waist-deep in such a period right now.  I would - if I thought it fair to do - pawn off the responsibility for that feeling on the relentlessly aggressive scorching weather we have been experiencing here in the State of Concrete Gardens lately.  However, the weather has nothing at all to do with it.  

We all make our choices in life.  We pursue one thing at the expense of another.  We opt for this in lieu of that.  It happens.  We cannot do everything and we recognize that to feel alive we cannot do nothing.  So we do what we can.   In the end - it seems this way to me anyway - we do those things that we must do at a far greater rate than we do anything else.   It is when we do not adhere to that philosophy that our system breaks down.  It is then that we run the risk of collapse, the risk of chaos. 

Every morning when my alarm clock rings upon shutting it off I look over to the other side of our bed and take more reassurance than I should otherwise be entitled to from the fact that Margaret is there.  That level of reassurance is multiplied exponentially for me during times like these.  When the morning greets you with the question, "Why are you doing what you do?" it is helpful to have the best possible answer to that question at the ready.  Especially when your limited skill set has effectively removed the coordinates of a possible alternative course from the realm of possibility long ago.... 

....Have you ever seen a scarecrow filled with nothing but dust and weeds
If you've ever seen that scarecrow then you've seen me
Have you ever seen a one armed man punchin' at nothing but the breeze
If you've ever seen a one armed man then you've seen me


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