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April 18th, 2011

in praise of going easy on life

We watched a wonderful documentary tonight on PBS in which the film-maker retraced the steps and ideas of a well-known Texas naturalist. The visuals included so many familiar landscapes and birds. We ate sauteed chicken with vidalia onions.

Today on my way to court, I stopped at Shell station for gas. A woman, perhaps 30, drove up with a new Volkswagen Jetta. I could see her temporary license, indicating a recent purchase. After we each had gassed up our cars, we both pulled out about the same time, me in my aged and well-driven Sonata, she just ahead in her brand new Jetta.

When she put her left arm outside of her window, to flick the ashes off a cigarette, my first thought was to wonder at her thereby ruining the new car-ness of a new Jetta. Then I caught hold of myself, and realized that the best thing about one's new car is that it is one's mobile castle. She's just trying to live her life--and who am I to judge? My Sonata is anything but pristine. So many people try to live life harmlessly, and we all need a break sometimes.