Friday, August 9, 2019

Flyfishing Season is Over

Flyfishing season is over.

I’d fish the Blackfoot River with one arm if necessary.
Photo/guide credit: KynsLee Scott
Shoulder pain has been an unwelcome and persistent companion since early 2019. I’ve been gritting my teeth and casting anyway. The Blackfoot and Firehole Rivers were worth the piper’s fare. But now I think it’s time to grow up. 10 weeks of physical therapy. Oral steroids. A cortisone injection deep into the joint. After all that, a CT scan last week reveals I have at least three kinds of tissue damage and mild arthritis. At least I know there’s a reason. A good surgeon can fix Humpty Dumpty, right? Insert hope here. Maybe some WD-40 liniment and strategically placed duct tape?

“This child is getting old...”

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Life Is Pain

“Writing is not necessarily something to be ashamed of, but do it in private and wash your hands afterwards.” -- Robert A. Heinlein -- 

Since my Deep Brain Stimulation surgery in April and May of 2017, things have been quiet and sparse around here.  Maybe there’s something to “The Myth of the Suffering Artist.”  I'll caveat that: in no way, shape, or form do I consider myself an artist.  I have and always will approach things as a technician, or maybe an engineer.  Even when it comes to writing.  At the age of 9, I was introduced to a cognitive model called “Blooms Taxonomy.” It provided an interesting crystal ball for scrying into to cobwebs and haunted machinery in my head. (Is that you, Lord Sauron?)  I’ll spare you the boring and deviant details of my training and early adventures in metacognition, but I've come to realize where my mind does its best work: synthesis.

“Using old concepts to create new ideas; design and invention; composing; imagining; inferring; modifying; predicting; combining”

For me, writing is a problem-solving and design process.  I throw a few concepts, quotes, and references at a wall.  I arrange, rearrange, connect, fill, typo, misspell, despair, yell, accept, and publish.  But there's no art here.  It lacks creativity and originality.  For example, this is where I should insert a gratuitous (and overused) quote from Saint Norman:
...all good things - trout as well as eternal salvation - come by grace and grace comes by art and art does not come easy.