Friday, May 23, 2008


My college roommate, who was a psychology major, once told me about a spectrum of conversational interest. At one end are things, which are mildly interesting to talk about. In the middle are people, who are more interesting. And at the other end are ideas, which are the most interesting.

I thought about this yesterday when it occurred to me that my blog had been very “thing-focused” for the last few days!

So let’s move on to people. Today’s photo is very appropriate, because I’ve been getting reminders lately about the impermanence of life. Sad reminders, actually.

Last week, one of my coworkers was diagnosed with breast cancer. It appears to have been caught early, but she’s still understandably shaken. She doesn’t yet know how it will be treated, so there’s a lot of uncertainty in her condition right now.

And then, out of the blue, a woman I used to know in Florida, in a town where I once worked, was killed in a car crash on Wednesday. She was a public official, and an extremely competent one -- capable, fair, smart. I always admired her approach to issues and her leadership ability.

I found this especially upsetting, even though I barely knew her, and certainly not much beyond her public roles. I kept thinking about how she got into her car Wednesday evening with no idea what was about to happen.

One minute you’re here, the next, you’re not. Fragile.

(Photo: Bleecker Street, April 2008)


Anonymous said...

Who knows what she knew when she got in her car on Wednesday? Some people see it coming.

I'm so sorry to hear about this loss, though, and about your colleague. Though horrible, the treatment for breast cancer really works. She'll have a bad year, but then she should be OK.

Thank God for good health and wonderful friends. This life really is a precious existence. Agile and fragile, too.

Thanks for the post! It is linked, though obscurely, to my "soul retrieval" post today.

Love being on your wavelength!

Anonymous said...

these last few weeks have had more than the normal share of reminders of how impermanent and fragile life is... cyclones, quakes, cancer, and personally some visits with some very, very fragile and old folks.

shadow and light yeah....

hugs friend.

Anonymous said...

Gosh Steve, this post is so close to home for me that I don't know what to say.

I hope your coworker recovers quickly. Thank goodness they found it early.

Ms. Young was my age. She crammed a lot of living into her time and left a lot of people who will remember her.

Anonymous said...

from agile to fragile... that's life. the pic says it all.

Anonymous said...

this from the poet William Stafford which I will be quoting soon over at my place: "Storms happen. One goes. One comes. Between, we midges dance in the sun."

Best to you and to your coworker.