Improptu

December 12, 2010 | 13 comments
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300px-Ardea_alba;_3_chicks,_Morro_Bay_Heron_Rookery_2_-_by_Mike_BairdIt’s approaching a year since I started writing here at Times & Seasons, back on January 20th. That, combined with Christmas, house hunting, and the inexorable New Year, has me reflective. Where am I going, and how am I doing in getting thither?

I started my stint here writing about building Zion — specifically, how we can intentionally build communities that bring people together in ways that are rewarding for each member of the community. I wrote about communities and Zion through April, and thought that would be my ongoing theme. That hasn’t turned out to be the case. Since April, my writing has been approximately equally divided between posts on gender roles, complaints on specific church-related issues, and discussing my little theo-philosophical models. Not bad, but not remarkable. In a sense, I suppose those topics are the bloggernacle in a nutshell.

My life has paralleled that pattern. I’m a passionate dreamer. I love being involved in the arts and creative projects. I had always planned to live a simple life, one of thought, reflection, friendship, and few personal possessions. I’m inspired by sunrises, foggy evening, windswept hills, and starry nights; by Thoreau, Whitman (not Meg), John Dowland, and George Winston. I’m a good choreographer and composer, a passable dancer and musician. And somehow, in spite of that, I’ve come to a place where I’ve got an MBA and lots of student debt. I’m looking at purchasing a suburban home on a suburban street in suburban California. I’m working in an office as a computer programmer, hoping to move into marketing or some other business-related field. None of which was in my plan five years ago.

And so my resolution as a Times & Seasons blogger for the upcoming year is to come back to community, to Zion, and to connect with you. I hope to write more of my human self into my posts. And my parallel resolution for myself, as Dane, is to figure out how to make it so that in two or five or ten years I’m spending more time at the piano, gallery, and countryside, and less time at my computer. Fortunately (for me, at least) those two resolutions are complementary, and my hope is that the interplay between my writing and my living will enhance them both.

13 Responses to Improptu

  1. Bob on December 12, 2010 at 11:14 am

    Dane: I live in a suburban home on a suburban street in suburban California (Northridge). It’s not Zion, nor is it Hell. We all cut our grass. You are welcome to move in.

  2. Bill of Wasilla on December 12, 2010 at 3:56 pm

    I think that instead of purchasing a suburban home on a suburban street in suburban California, you should purchase a log cabin atop an embankment overlooking the Yukon River. There you could think and reflect. We could become friends.

    Everynow and then, I would drop by and you could drink hot chocolate and I coffee.

    Then you could say, “Bill, why the hell do you drink that damned coffee, anyway? I know your mother raised you better than that.”

    And I would answer “because it’s good and I like it and life changes and we think and reflect upon it and wind up in a different place than we ever thought possible… just look at you… here you thought you were going to live in a suburban home in suburban CA and now you are living in a cabin over the Yukon, drinking hot chocolate with an unshackled Mormon coffee drinker.”

    I have enjoyed your posts, Dane. I don’t manage to drop by here everyday, but when I do, I always look for your name and try to catch up with what you write.

    By the way, Bob, I don’t cut my grass and I live in Heaven, although sometimes it feels like hell.

  3. Bob on December 12, 2010 at 5:36 pm

    #3: Bill___you have been watching too much Palin in Alaska.
    We really don’t cut the grass ourselves__that what “others” are for.

  4. Bill of Wasilla on December 12, 2010 at 8:10 pm

    Bob – There you go, stereotyping we who live in Wasilla just because one national nightmare sprung from our town. I suspect you watch Palin more than I do. I had enough of her – oh, about 20 years ago. You also contradict your earlier statement and lift yourself above whoever these “others” are.

  5. Bob on December 12, 2010 at 9:08 pm

    #4: I am sorry I hit a bad note. I would not dream of stereotyping the people of Wasilla. I am sure only 95% give the rest a bad name. You are right, I did contradict myself. I do cut my own lawn and wash my own car. but I have arranged for my Christmas Tamales though the others. I do like the idea of Alaska__if you could have a little less snow and cold. But I think (?) Dane is a people person and does not hear the call of the wild.

  6. Jon Miranda on December 12, 2010 at 10:59 pm

    Dane:
    I may be wrong but shouldn’t it be spelled impromptu?

  7. Dane Laverty on December 13, 2010 at 2:04 am

    Bob and Bill, thank you both. Bill, my wife keeps telling me that we need to visit Alaska, so next time we’re there I’ll make it a point to drop by and say hi. Bob, my sister just starting attending college in Northridge (a sign language program), so if you tell me how I can get in touch with you, I’d love to connect if I’m ever down there. My email is danelaverty@gmail.com . Incidentally, I am a people person, but the draw of the wilderness is also strong to me. I remember talking with a friend in college about wanting to build a dome home in the middle of nowhere and “be one with everything” — his insightful response was that it’s hard to be one with everything when you’re in nothing. So it’s a balance that I’m still trying to figure out.

    Jon, nope, it’s improptu, just like I spelled it. Impromptu must be some other word ;)

  8. Paul on December 13, 2010 at 2:39 pm

    Dane, after earning a masters in theatre history and then an MBA, I share the dischord that you have felt in your life. We sometimes don’t get where we thought we were going.

    Still, with that MBA, I’ve enjoyed suburban grass cutting as well as apartment living in Asia and South America, and enjoyed an ever expanding world view.

    Good luck to you on your quest.

  9. Bill of Wasilla on December 13, 2010 at 10:49 pm

    Dane, you will most welcome when you arrive here. To both Dane and Paul, I would note that there is no contradiction in being both a wilderness and people person. Just wander around my blog for awhile and you will see. I often think that it is easier to connect with people when you are surrounded by the wild than the city – and for certain, then the suburb.

  10. Bill of Wasilla on December 13, 2010 at 11:52 pm

    er… I meant to both Dane and “Bob”.

    Sorry, Paul.

    Expanding world views are good, although it can break your heart and challenge all that you believe in.

  11. WVS on December 14, 2010 at 1:39 am

    Dane I always look over here to see your new pieces, and I’m looking forward to another year. Best of luck with your goals.

  12. Bob on December 14, 2010 at 10:03 am

    It will be interesting to see Dane’s pick.
    Bill, I served a Mission in Montana, and yearned for years to move to the Bitterroot Valley. But the tides took me elsewhere. I visited your site(s)__you are a lucky man.

  13. Bill of Wasilla on December 14, 2010 at 4:44 pm

    Bob – That is something because I lived in Missoula for four years, beginning just before my 9th birthday and ending just before my 13th.

    The place kept a hold on me and haunted my dreams for decades and so in 2001 I returned and began a photo essay on the place – visuals from the present (that present now falling ever deeper into the past), text from memory. I managed to make it back just about every year through 2005, but have had neither the time or means to return, so my essay remains unfinished.

    Sooner or later, though, Missoula, Montana and the Bitterroot Valley will make some appearances in my blog, or in whatever my blog evolves into.

    Thank you and good luck to you.

WELCOME

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