Friday, March 13, 2015
No black cats have crossed my path; so I feel lucky.
Except the black cat I keep at home and who likes to listen to me when I play guitar and sing; he doesn’t count. He obviously doesn’t have any taste.
I’m not really superstitious; I just like the idea that we live in a world of uncertainty and wish that luck played as big a part in determining where we go and what we do as we pretend it does.
This was a rough week though, filled with the yearly ritual of a progress report – that extra bit of madness that we engage in for advertising purposes.
I was so far behind on my regular copy all week that I could not walk into Hoboken from the heights like I have done most of the winter, even through spring has finally sprung and the weather is the kind of weather perfect for such a trek.
Having two Friday the Thirteenths in a row – last month and this – of course, doubles the paranoia.
But even without the so-called bad luck days, change is in the air, and it is more than spring.
It is more than the change that I see ongoing when I look out the second floor window from my desk in Hoboken.
I’ve been through this enough to feel it in my bones months before it happens.
This is not good or bad, it just is.
Once done with work today – while waiting to make corrections on the copy – I took a walk through the streets of Hoboken, a place that alters with the change of day, night being so starkly different than day that to stroll through one is to miss the other.
This is not the same Hoboken I moved into in 1992, and won’t be the same Hoboken when I finally leave this job two years from now.
And yet through its streets, old ghosts still wander.
I passed the stoop where my mother used to sit, and felt her presence, even though she is more than a decade deceased. I walked down Sinatra Drive aware of the fact that his ghost will always be here, even though his family doesn’t want to acknowledge us anymore. I walked down the alley way where On the Waterfront was filmed and felt not just the ghosts of the actors, but of a whole way of life that has vanished and will never return.
I know I will miss this place for all of its memories when I move on. But I also know it will not miss me.
We are but spirits passing through a place that is more significant than we are, and history is not meant to record the small people of the world, those of us who work or play, but rather to record the actions – good or bad – of those whose lives rise above the ordinary.
I will always be ordinary, even if and when I do something extraordinary. It is my fate.