As I was walking out the door this morning, I saw what I thought was a crumbly wet leaf sitting in our entryway. Having just vacuumed, I decided to pick it up and throw it out the door.
It was cat vomit. I had just picked up a handful of cat vomit.
That’s how my day started today. A handful of cat vomit. I guess you can only go up from there.
Friday night I went to a Winter Hawks game and watched them win, but it was a Pyrrhic victory at best. I never thought I could watch us win and think the game sucked so bad.
Saturday morning Jenn’s family was having family pictures taken. Since the mall they were having pictures done was halfway to the store I wanted to go to that day, I said I’d go, too, hang out at the mall while they were getting pictures, then Jenn and I could continue on to my target destination.
We got to the mall at 10, but the mall opens at 10, so we all stumbled around trying to find each other because we all came in different entrances. The photo appointment was at 11, but when we checked in, we found they were running way behind. I decided to walk the mall.
I probably walked 30 miles. Jenn’s family didn’t even get in until almost noon, then didn’t get out until nearly one. I have about an hour-and-a-half’s worth of tolerance for the mall, so after three hours I was ready to leave before I hurt someone.
Jenn wanted to get food, so we went to Denny’s. Now, Denny’s is not somewhere that I ever plan to end up, but we somehow actually planned to go to Denny’s that day. I won’t go into details, but I left there feeling I had consumed way too much grease and I realized again why it is that I never plan to end up at Denny’s.
After Denny’s we made a Costco run - I got my copy of the Indiana Jones trilogy on DVD - and a Fry’s run - I got Time Crisis 3, another light gun game, with the gun so I can play one person with two guns or two players.
Saturday night was another hockey game. We won again and it was better hockey all the way around, but it still didn’t really get me into the game. Oh well, right? A win’s a win.
Sunday morning we went to my parents’ house and washed our cars. It’d been like a month since I’d washed mine and it was definitely time. That took most of the morning, and then we went back home and finished up the chores that we didn’t get time for Saturday.
Sunday evening, besides watching Alias, we went to see the Cirque du Soleil production Alegría.
I’m a huge Cirque fan. I’ve seen Mystere in Las Vegas like three times, I’ve seen Saltimbanco and Dralion as they’ve come through Portland, and now I’ve seen Alegría.
While it isn’t my favorite of the shows I’ve seen, I liked it. It definitely reminded me of the classic circus, but with an upgraded feel so it appealed to the child inside an adult. There were acrobats and trapeze artists and a strong man and clowns… and all of it came together wonderfully.
The thing about Cirque, though, is that, for me, it means more than just seeing the show. Seeing Cirque somehow renews my faith in humanity. It shows me that there can be form without function and that’s sometimes a Good Thing. It shows me that you can be happy just for the sake of being happy. It shows me that creativity and beauty in the world aren’t necessarily dead, and that you can be rewarded for instilling great emotions in people.
I sit in my cube all day coding. I hate coding. Sure, it takes some creativity to solve problems programmatically, but when all is said and done, all you’ve accomplished that day is pushing bits around. Did it make any real difference? Is there anything to show for it? No.
Seeing these shows makes me realize I really should have just gone for the art school and not done computer science. Now I’m pretty much stuck where I’m at, and without the money and time to go back and learn the stuff I should have learned to begin with, I’m not qualified to do anything else. But since I can’t do that, it helps to know that style and art really aren’t dead, and even if I can’t generate them for other people, I can take part in the enjoyment.
I thought about maybe getting a job at the Cirque main office or something. Even doing what I’m already doing, but for a company where I fully believe in and support the product. (I mean, online banking software? Who cares?!) But then I also thought that once you see the underworkings of the beautiful machine, once you see that sort of thing every day… you may get anesthetized to it. Would it lose its meaning? Or would contributing to the effort be fulfilling? Somehow I don’t think I’ll ever have the opportunity to find out.
So I look forward to seeing the Cirque come to town, and I’m sad when it’s over. While I’m there, I wish I could take part in it, living the dream. Until the next time they’re here I’ll just hope to carry the feeling inside me.