The Long View

Common belief is that the “Long View” is the thing we must have. People, companies, countries, who take the long view are held up as icons for correct and proper thought and policy. However, I don’t think my generation, “The Boomers,” was raised with this particular view. We are the TV generation and everything, and I mean everything, was solved in 30 minutes or less with timeout for commercials. Hmmm, that’s not entirely true since one hour shows were popular in their own right but were usually “specials,” think Ed Sullivan with Elvis or The Beatles, or the Walt Disney Hour. And, of course, Soap Operas required you view them everyday to get even the tiniest morsel of new information and many of them were an hour. But for the most part, we and perhaps our children and theirs are products of our expectations and we expect that the mystery will be solved, the champion declared, the $64,000 question answered (or not), all within 30 minutes or less.

I also have a theory that the great military leaders from centuries ago were the ones whose vision was the best, that they could stand on a hilltop and actually see the battlefields below them. A leader who was nearsighted had to either have a farsighted sidekick, was probably doomed to defeat, or, had a great mapping and comm system. Some believe that the Chinese think ahead in centuries. Financially, I believe we think ahead in quarters, that is the next reporting period. Many of us extend that thought process into everyday life and I used to be right there with you. I posit that staying that course makes you more of a consumer than a participant and that participating offers a richer experience that is not defined by time or even space. I’ve learned over the last ten years or so that absorbing the moments erases the manic quest for the next.

For instance, while I wish this last and crappy episode of chemo was over, it’s not. And this is just one of the things she must do in the next year. But taking the long view…I’m okay with that.  Even this crumby week is a week to enjoy something…our kids, the birds, the crazy raccoons, the dozens of flying squirrels, our friends, and more. And we don’t want all of that to stop every thirty minutes. Just a thought.

 

From Washington’s Mt Vernon looking northeast to the Potomac River

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Season Six, Episode One

At last we are at the end of this part of the journey. Busy week. Kirsten was born 26 years ago yesterday. Wow. Kelsey started work at what sounds like a cool summer school/camp for kids where she has to provide intellectually challenging activities that are thought provoking and fun. And, this is the first cancer Season without some sort of baseball activities. Kyle decided to work this summer instead of baseball and has a job in a small chemical engineering company where he is getting many opportunities to learn and then do; AND, he really enjoys what he’s doing. That is actually a good distraction for both Diane and I. We’ve also been busy with other medical appointments since she has surgery in a month. Lots of people to talk with and lots of places to go. Things are moving fast and we’re happy about that. Well, Diane is not moving so fast but that’s because of the Episode One timing. She is doing good, though, and smiling through it all. Both of us are suffering from “chemo brain,” (me, only by close association and proximity, of course) so we both have to pay attention to what we’re doing or God knows where we’ll end up. I have driven by more than one Interstate exit I meant to take…oh well. It’ll get better for Diane, me…well, I’m hopeful! Smile.

This is a composite image from several I’ve taken over the years. The young lady posed for me in the 2018 Katsucon.

Katsucon Warrior Pose

Katsucon Warrior Pose

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Father’s Day

I hope that this Day to honor fathers is a good one for you. Someday I will do a post about my time as a youth and my relationship with my father. It wasn’t abusive or mean or anything…just…very scandihoovian.

Tomorrow is Diane’s last really bad chemo session. She has others in future months but they are immunotherapy rather than partly poisonous and so although there will be side effects, they won’t be the same, that is, as horrible. We won’t know the real drill until after surgery which has been rescheduled for July 18.

Baseball and classes are over for everyone and tomorrow is a workday for both of the kids. I am eager to see how that will go but will miss having them home to stay with Diane in weeks 1&2. “I don’t need anyone here!” she would say. “Okay,” I would say. We had three “dates” this last week. On Sunday we went to the PhotoWorks PhotoSlam in DC where my images were on the “slammed” side. Sigh. On Tuesday we went to Old Town, had pizza and wine, and swapped stories with a long time friend. Friday we went to Frederick, Maryland, where I found covered bridges and an awesome antiques store. This image is from that store.

Hand carved wooden hearts

Hand carved wooden hearts from “Great Stuff by George” antique store in Frederick, MD

 

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D-Day

Seventy-five years ago, thousands of young U.S. soldiers landed on the beaches in Normandy to free the world from the despotical, racist, maniacal rule of Hitler and the Nazis. My uncle, Bob Brandt was there that day, on LST-309 ferrying troops and equipment to Omaha Beach. I am humbled by the courage and sacrifice of all those who were part of that campaign, and, for their families who probably never had an idea of the terror. We tend to forget.

I haven’t been to Normandy and sadly, probably never will. That doesn’t prevent me from remembering, honoring, and praying that we don’t have to do that again. But, we aren’t very good at that part. This image is from Arlington National Cemetery.

Arlington National Cemetery

Arlington National Cemetery

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Season 5, Episode 2

Things are going okay. Diane is charging through the recovery phase of the session and so is low but coming back. She went out to  baseball games twice during Week 1 and so her recovery has been set back just a little bit. She is now getting energy back and bought flowers today to put in “fishbowls on the wall.” Instead of pictures…hmmm.

I get up at 4 most mornings, hard to sleep for some reason. Guess I’m dreaming about not having allergies!!! This is an image from National Harbor. The ferris wheel there is not as big as London’s.

National Harbor

National Harbor Ferris Wheel

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