View from the Hot Tub

“Learn…to Live Well” was an appropriate name for blogs regarding education, but, ironically, I felt pedantic-sounding and also limiting in scope.

In review: I enjoyed “Angels and Assholes”…the point obvious. My summary of the biggest “asshole” being the pharmaceutical business i.e., “People will pay anything to stay alive.” Best “angel:” a son’s gift to his mother (Mary’s graduation from Holy Angels -- Angel #2 on May 27th, , 2015 in the archives on my website, if you’re interested. My son is a darn good angel).

I, at least, enjoyed a year of “What If’s.” (You may have noticed a couple days ago Mark Saxenmeyer, Executive Director of “The Reporters, Inc.” who had published my Initial “What If” re-posted it. Thanks Mark.) The biggest What If: What if everyone was kind? Yes, a tad altruistic and most would think unrealistic, I’m sure. But what if education for everyone started at birth? Could happen for sure in the U.S. Could we even move toward a world of “angels” on earth for our kids and grandkids? As I mentioned in “Angels and Assholes:” Who really wants to be an asshole? We’re not born that way. I do believe assholism is caused by a misconception that happiness is a result of trying to make ourselves happy. Maybe through education we teach people that being kind is what makes us happy.

So, anyway, I am a fan of hot tubs. I mean sittin outside in any weather totally comfortable? C’mon. Blizzards maybe the best…most intense for sure. Where can you get a less obstructed view? Yes it helps that my hot tub is in the woods at the edge of a lake. What can I say? Helps me think and be thankful. Just yesterday I could hear, from inside the cabin, the lake groaning, sometimes howling so loud the cabin shook. The sounds like spirits complaining about the arrival of old man winter. So I disposed of my clothes and headed out.

This time of the year one of my favorite times in the tub is twilight shading into dusk. Then waiting to see what hidden surprises the night brings. Seriously, one evening before my wife left for “town,” we were in the tub at twilight and a fox went strolling by. We said hello and it stopped, sat down, and we talked for quite a while. True it was a one-sided conversation but he seemed to listen attentively. When he (or she) stood to leave, I said “Oh please don’t go.” She walked to the other side of the tub and laid down. I’m not shittin ya. I’ve been accused of conjuring up slight embellishments being Irish and all, but my wife is a truth-toting German and she’ll stand behind me on this one. It struck me it was the gentle, calming tone in our voices that must have attracted her. If you have a pet, you understand. The words don’t matter. It’s kinda like everyone laughs in the same language. See, shit like this happen with a view from the hot tub.

So, anyway, yesterday: I headed out to intimately experience the noisy spirits, watch the winter sun fading off the far shore, and to wait for the night to settle in. I discovered the groans I had heard were more like rolling moans that never ended, just intensified then subsided. I couldn’t tell if the spirits were in agony or ecstasy. Yes, like a lingering love-making: cold and warmth colliding. Pain and pleasure.

Of course I’ve been up here alone for a while. Entertaining thoughts arrive unrequested when you’re naked and lonely in a hot tub. The “special” moon that night didn’t help.