Thursday, July 29, 2010

Proof of Life

I can't believe that he's gone.

A fleeting thought that I can't even explain the genesis of drove me to google an old flame last night. The oldest of serious flames, really. And the very first item that came up was a newspaper article about a man of the same name dying in a motorcycle accident last year. Too many coincidences added up in the article, and the dread settled in as I found his memory page on the web.

I gasped when the page came up. It was him. Some gray hair and wrinkles, but the same warm, smiling face. I browsed the slideshow of pictures spanning his obviously very full, joyful life.
He had children and step-children, and grandchildren...a Harley! The pictures portrayed a life well lived. Far too short, but well lived, indeed.

I've pondered all day as to what exactly has touched me so deeply about this. It's not a loss to me, in any kind of everyday real life sense. Certainly a loss at some level, I guess. But what I really think hit me hard is the question that I've known has been bubbling to surface since I laid eyes on that memory page: What will the pictures of my life portray to those I leave behind someday?

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Sarah and the Bear

I'm smiling after reading this article about Sarah, Todd and Piper Palin encountering a mama bear and her cubs just a couple of feet from them as they salmon fished. While the article mentions the Palins were "stunned", I must say that they appear very poised in the photo. That doesn't surprise me a bit.

Coincidentally, a friend and I had just been talking about Jimmy Carter's famous fishing encounter with a ferocious, attacking, swimming(!) "Killer Rabbit" a/k/a Killer Water Bunny. The official photographs mentioned in this article don't do the menacing rodent justice, so I decided to use a cartoonist's rendition of the encounter for fairness in comparison.  Here we go...

                                           Sarah and the Bear:

                                       Jimmy and the Killer Water Bunny:

I'll leave it at that.