Thursday, June 18, 2009

The Ultimate Goal


Someone asked me about my blog today. They asked: “What’s your ultimate goal with it?” And it’s a good question. Because I’m a word person and a totally shameless Gogol Bordello fan, the world “ultimate” is what stuck out to me (the title of one of their most, well, ultimate songs). I gave the person a very short, admittedly insincere reply. Not a lie, just an I-can’t-explain-it-really answer. Half-embarrassed that I didn’t really know. And half-resistant to saying what was true since what is true isn’t really a goal so much as a whole bunch of stuff I don't know yet and can't explain.

The real answer would have been to blast this:



Or play this:



Or read the last several lines of Maurice Manning’s poem “Three Truths and One Story”: "There are words and there are deeds, and both/are dying out, dying away/from where they were and what they meant./God save the man who has the heart/to think of anything more sad."

Once, when I was very young, I had to walk the final bottom stretch of El Caminito Road to get to school. Something had happened with a ride, and to wait would have meant being late. So someone’s mother directed me down the road. “Just walk. And watch for cars.” It was a short stretch. But I was small and there was no sidewalk, just a big intimidating fence to my left that lined our town’s private airstrip. On that walk, I became very aware of the sound of my feet in the dirt. The crunching of my sneakers. And then I became very aware that I was aware. And I began to think about death, as I often did, and about infinite which usually scared me, but didn’t on this particular morning, and I thought about what I would be like when I was old, very very old, and I saw myself there. Old me. And young, small me was filled with a certainty that my life was going to be somehow extraordinary. I didn’t have those words then, but I knew.

In other words, the ultimate goal is, y’know, that.

All of it.

6 comments:

kmk said...

you rock!!!

Abby said...

though i usually have answers to questions like that, i generally hate being put on the spot to answer them. especially when the questions are about things like blogs that are largely undefined anyway and/or that the question-asker is fuzzy about to begin with.

TJBeitelman... said...

Amen. (Am I allowed to say that? I do live in the South, after all. Where none of us knows any better.)

Anonymous said...
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laura didyk said...

Thanks for the great comments everone!

Rosina said...

yes, shoes in the dirt, shadows on the ground, the sound of wind in the trees, a dog barking across the valley. Somehow when we were kids there was time and space to notice all these things. I remember those existential moments too, I think I usually had some kind of cloth over my head, sitting in the back seat of the car, feeling the sunlight coming through onto my face, seeing the tinted light of whatever color the cloth was, seeing the little light jewels at the ends of my eyelashes...

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