Life Is Too Short To Be Condensed To Biscuits And Gravy

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On days when I spend six to seven hours in the car, I generally conclude that I am not the sharpest Crayola in the box. Yesterday was one of those days. That being said, it wasn’t that long of a day. I left the house around 6:30 a.m. to travel to Houston. I arrived earlier than needed. I knew that I would. I left the house too early, but it is always good to get ahead of the traffic. I haven’t yet totally figured out how to do that since the jaunt through Oakhill can be challenging at best. The intersection and stretch of road near the Y in Oakhill has been under construction for months. Who knows how it will eventually turn out, but shall I simply say, “Improvement is needed.”

As it turned out, I should have taken the time to work on today’s blog before I got on the road.  It would have been a good use of time.  Of course, that would have negated the “wait until the last minute and forfeit some sleep” approach that is mostly characteristic of the printing press that operates out of my home office. As I was passing the airport on my way out of town yesterday morning, I noticed an email while I was stopped for a red light (Note: I included that level of detail on the outside chance that my boss reads this blog. It is not likely, but you can’t be too careful.) A friend had sent an email alerting me that the Weebly blog only had a picture. It did not have an accompanying story. I found the information frustrating, even though I live with the on-going knowledge that I don’t always get it right. I don’t know what happened to the story. I posted it yesterday morning immediately after posting the same blog on WordPress. I made a mental note to get my computer out when I got to Houston and make the correction. Sadly, it is 10:00 p.m. on Thursday and I’m just now thinking about that again. You know what they say about good intentions.

Okay, I confess, I couldn’t continue with the draft of this blog until I ensured yesterday’s blog got posted. It took fifteen seconds. All I had to do was double click on the blank page and it automatically populated.

“Easy is as easy does”. Where did that expression come from? I’m not sure I’ve ever spoken or written the expression. A quick Google search rendered, “I think the phrase actually supports the idea that things (or a thing) is only as easy as we make it”.

“While scheduling a doctor’s appointment sounds simple, when you think about all the contributing things you need to do – (pick up the phone, find the doctor’s number, determine which doctor you need to schedule an appt with, find the best day for you, find the best day for the doctor, etc.) it can seem a daunting event/task”.

“Easy is as easy does says to me – call the doc and make an appointment. Don’t think about the small stuff too much, otherwise, you will get caught in all the details”.

I had hoped to arrive in Houston with enough time to have coffee with a friend I haven’t seen in a very long while. I told myself I’d have time to incorporate a brief visit on either side of the business meeting I was attending. The thought put a smile on my face. It has been way too long since we’ve had an opportunity to visit and catch up. My friend moved from Dallas to Houston several years ago to be near his daughter and her family. The opportunity for upward mobility within his daughter’s company subsequently was an appealing lure she couldn’t turn down. His daughter is now in the process of relocating to Denver. I have absolutely no idea what my friend will opt to do in light of those circumstances.

As I made my way to Houston yesterday morning, I thought I’d call and negotiate a time to visit. It then occurred to me, I couldn’t do that. I haven’t successfully negotiated a telephone call in the past two weeks. I have totally lost my voice. For the most part, the hacking incessant cough is gone until toward the end of the day when it re-emerges, but I can’t make a sound above a faint whisper regardless of the time of day.

Someone described me as a “fish out of water”. I’ve had the same thought this past week. The prior week I was too sick to care.  I’ve been in two or three large gatherings of people where the need to verbally communicate is really important to have in one’s toolbox.  Obviously, I came up short.

I actually contemplated texting my friend to ask if he’d like to visit. Then it occurred to me, “No one wants to hear me whisper.” Yesterday morning when I arrived in Houston, I had nothing but time on my hands. Why not? I got there early and by default opted to spend some time at Barnes and Noble.

At the gathering yesterday, my boss described me to someone as “whispering Don.” Linking whispering to my name took me back to the memory of “Whispering Bill Anderson”. He is a country music singer, songwriter and television personality. He is only about a decade older than me, so I’m choosing to think he is still alive.  I remember his music from my childhood. His composition of “City Lights” was written when he was nineteen years old and was recorded by Ray Price in 1958 and Mickey Gilley in 1975. Both versions went to the top of the country charts.

“Whisperin’ Bill”, Anderson’s autobiography was published in 1989 and made the best seller lists all across the South. His second book was a humorous look at the music business. He entitled it, “I Hope You’re Living As High On The Hog As The Pig You Turned Out To Be”. It was published in 1993 and is now in its fourth printing.

Getting back to the seven hours I spent in the car yesterday, I passed the time mostly listening to the radio. What was I thinking? When I made the decision to discontinue my subscription to satellite radio – SiriusXM Radio, it seemed like a prudent decision. I was paying for satellite radio in my work car, my truck and the General’s (aka – my wife) car.  Truthfully, there was only one station on Sirius XM that I listened to and it was “easy listening music.” Driving back to Austin yesterday afternoon, the radio station I had been listening to became out of range and I switched the station. It landed on a Country Western station. I couldn’t believe my ears. The lyrics to “Biscuit” went like this:

“…Nobody’s perfect, we’ve all lost and we’ve all lied                                                                                                                  Most of us have cheated the rest of us have tried                                                                                                                            The holiest of the holy even slip from time to time                                                                                                                      We’ve all got dirty laundry hanging on the line

So hoe your own row and raise your own babies                                                                                                                      Smoke your own smoke and grow your own daisies                                                                                                                   Mend your own fences and own your own crazy                                                                                                                         Mind your own biscuits and life will be gravy                                                                                                                                Mind your own biscuits and life will be gravy…”

I’m not refuting the truthfulness of the lyrics, but it was a bit much. Tomorrow I’m opting to reactive the Sirius radio in my car. Life is too short to be condensed to biscuits and gravy.

All My Best!

Don

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