Saturday, April 11, 2009

Thirtysomething.

So my friend turns 30 in two days. It's not unusual for me to give him some guff about getting old, especially since he's a bit nervous about it. You know, the typical scare tactics like "say good-bye to your life as you know it" or "it's all downhill from here" or mentioning the wrinkles, sags, hair loss (which he lost quite a while back) lack of youthfulness. It's all fun and games until you start to think, wait, I'm almost 40! Ok, so I'm not that close to 40, but 36 is close enough. In 4 years, I'll be 40...ughh.

Now, keep in mind that none of the things that I say about turning 30 actually happens to me...only a few more wrinkles, the hair is still there, no sagging here, and I feel more youthful now than I did in my mid-twenties. Of course, I do things that help me feel young. I'd say half of the people I know are about 10 years younger than me. This has it's advantages and disadvantages, which is quite complicated to elaborate here. Maybe later.

But here's what to expect as you get well into your 30's (feel free to contribute to this list):
* it sort of hurts when you wake up.
* hips squeak a little when you're walking or running, or moving for longer than a mile.
* mid-day naps (ok, I've always loved naps, but now I can say it's because I'm getting older).
* a few grays, sprinkled here and there. Luckily, the "there" hasn't happened for me yet.
* grouchy, grumpy, irritable when you don't have enough sleep or food.
* you say what's in your head instead of keeping it to yourself (which has caused a few problems).
* more passionate in your expressions of feelings. Things just feel more intense.
* enjoy time doing absolutely nothing with friends. I cherish these as amazing days/moments.
* you begin to know what you want, really know what you want. You might not get it, but now you know...and you wait until you get it.
* multi-tasking is easier, but you lose some sharpness in your mind. you forget the things that really weren't that important anyway.
* the saying about men in their 20's and women in their 30's...it's true.

Anyway, happy birthday to those entering their thirties...it'll be an amazing time for you, as long as you feel young you are young.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Rumi on fasting.

I heard this poem by Rumi on fasting, it seems relevant to those who are fasting this week for the Anti-Joe Arpaio week of action. 10 people are fasting to call attention to the things that Arpaio is doing to this community; to raise greater awareness of how the Hispanic community is being targeted by the Sheriff. It's also relevant as I come back from my few days off...for reflection. I love Rumi.

There's hidden sweetness in the stomach's emptiness.
We are lutes, no more, no less.

If the soundboxes stuffed full of anything, no music.
If the brain and belly are burning clean with fasting,
every moment a new song comes out of the fire.
The fog clears, and new energy makes you run
up the steps in front of you.
Be emptier and cry like reed instruments cry.

Emptier, write secrets with the reed pen.
When you're full of food and drink,
Satan sits where your spirit should,
an ugly metal statue in place of the Kaaba.
When you fast, good habits gather
like friends who want to help.
Fasting is Solomon's ring.

Don't give into some illusion and lose your power,
but even if you have, if you've lost all will and control,
they come back when you fast,
like soldiers appearing out of the ground,
pennants flying above them.

A table descends to your tents, Jesus' table.
Expect to see it, when you fast,
this table spread with other food,
better than the broth of cabbages.