HORIZONTAL MYSTERY SHIP when you leave at seventeen rarely home more than two weeks at a time months, years and decades can be surprisingly unreliable markers of adulthood only once in the summer of ‘88 a recent college grad wide-eyed and wanderlust-fueled my tonsils required more I stayed a whole month once healed, packed, and in possession of necessary visas off to the southern hemisphere a young pioneer in search adventure and different stars now, when visiting after a lifetime lived elsewhere grey hairs visible no matter my efforts I find myself sliding into a peculiar second adolescence of sorts driving Dad’s truck windows down, hair blowing mile after mile of expansive, wild beauty the prairie a determined cellular homesteader forever staking a claim in my blood and bones I want to sneak out to the bar play Space Invaders sadly, no longer a standard unlike 1982 drink beer, eat junk food and avoid the endless expectations of being a grown-up Looking back with midlife sensibilities I realize those late nights in high school tenth grade, I believe laser focused, playing Space Invaders provided a surprisingly valuable education initials entered, quarters stacked protect the bunkers, defeat the aliens monitor the horizontal mystery ship with vigilance my peripheral vision unknowingly trained to notice things beyond immediate scope bonus points pinged while friends waited impatiently twenty more minutes, please under a waning August moon only one lunar phase ago I was still my father’s daughter a middle-aged, South Dakota teenager pretending time actually plays tricks wanting desperately to disregard reality one more visit on the calendar one more phone call cheeseburger or ice cream cone one more evening watching Everybody Loves Raymond M.A.S.H. or Mayberry RFD twenty more minutes, please quarters stacked no longer Space Invaders the nearly forgotten teenage relic of a heartbroken fifty-something fatherless daughter once again, I am protecting my bunkers monitoring a new horizontal mystery ship paying very close attention to what's just beyond my immediate scope just twenty more minutes, please
I heard an interview with Jessica Lamb-Shapiro who wrote: “PROMISE LAND My Journey Through America’s Self-Help Culture” on NPR that re-aired recently and it really struck me that we spend so much time trying to figure ourselves out…is it working? I don’t want to sound preachy. I am very much all in with the personal discovery stuff. ALL IN. I have just decided to read fewer books of the self-help ilk and dive into more fiction and storytelling this year. Erica Jong’s “Fear of Flying” in on my bedside table right now. A great start to a year of fiction.
Here’s the link to Jessica Lamb-Shapiro’s interview:
In Jessica’s interview she quotes the philosopher Marcus Aurelius Roman Emperor and Philosopher as having as good of information as anyone about life. I found this quote that really resonated me.
“You have power over your mind—not outside events.
Realize this, and you will find strength.”
Trying to directly quote anyone based on 4th Century scholars has some challenges—these words are attributed to him anyway. Thank you Mr. Aurelius.
I can’t believe I didn’t know about the Kansas City Library parking garage. I went to Kansas once for a baseball game in college and I don’t think I’ve been back. WOW. How unbelievably inspired. Here’s information about the design from collabcubed.
“Though the Kansas City Library Parking Garage in Kansas City, Missouri was completed in 2004, I had never seen it before. Designed by cdfm2 architects (now apparently 360 Architects), the book spines measure approximately 9 meters by 3 meters and are made of signboard mylar. The shelf showcases 22 titles reflecting a wide variety of reading interests suggested by Kansas City readers and then selected by The Kansas City Public Library Board of Trustees. Clever.”
Here is another site I found information too: