On changes and being older than dirt*

So, yesterday, I bought shoes.  And the clerk who was helping me with this project, commented on the laces for the Athletic Shoes, which are kind of a soft, stretchy material.  They reminded me instantly of something I haven’t thought of for years, and I said, “Oh, they’re like the jersey loops that you use to make potholders.”  She stared at me.  I tried again, because, honestly, I never learn:  “You know, when you were a kid, you had a bag full of jersey loops and a little metal loom, and you stretched the loops one way and then wove other loops through them and made so many potholders not even your grandmother wanted more?”  If possible, her stare got blanker, though she produced a tentative, but willing smile.  “Never mind,” I said; “cool laces.”

But!  That’s not why I called you together today.

Today, Steve and I let the WorldCon know that we will not be attending.  We’ve had to cancel out of the last several worldcons, for various reasons, but what makes this particularly poignant, is — we have no science fiction conventions on our schedule at all, for the first time since. . .1997.  Not sure how I feel about that.  On the one hand, we are kind of busy here on the home front for the next while.  On the other, con travel had become, if not a constant, then a unremarkable event in our lives.  It’s going to feel odd to stay home.  Maybe we can produce another vacation; the last one was a lot of fun.  And, Steve has decided to join me at the National Carousel Association Convention in September, which may scratch the con-going itch, a little.

Which leads me to the topic of Changes.  Steve and I have been through some Changes, starting with his becoming a Bionic Being in January 2011.  Not all of the Changes have been profound, and sometimes we went months at a time with hardly any Change at all, absent The Usual.

Around the middle of 2015, things started to heat up, with Steve’s stepfather, whose health had been fragile for several years, beginning to fail more seriouisly, requiring several family meetings, and trips to Maryland, to try to plan for the best good of Pete and Steve’s mother.

Pete died in the fall of 2016; soon after that, Steve was hospitalized for a cardiac event, and was forbidden to drive for six months.  Right after he got his wheels back — his mom began to fail dramatically.  More trips back and forth to Maryland for him, while I held the home front.  During one such separation, I fell ill with. . .Something. . .which changed my metabolism in odd ways, and before I was fully recovered, it was necessary to make one last trip to Maryland, to tell Mom good-bye, and see her placed properly next to Pete.

Just when we were beginning to accommodate that Change, we up and bought a house, which is Changing our lives in all kinds of amusing, frustrating, and unexpected ways.

I hadn’t realized that we’d had such a. . .busy last couple years until I was putting the files back into the file cabinets, which gave me an Annual Overview.  Apparently we are entering that Time of Life where Change will be the rule, but I hope Our Personal Changes will slow down just a bit, and give us so time to find our feet.

. . .and that’s what I’ve got today.

Hope you — yes, you — are enjoying the day.

*I was going to use a Frank Zappa quote to title this blog post, but it turns out Frank Zappa didn’t say that, which is just so exactly like him, I can’t even.  However!  He did say something else, which I share with you because I can:  “There is more stupidity than hydrogen in the universe.  And its shelf life is longer.”

5 thoughts on “On changes and being older than dirt*”

  1. I don’t have any SF conventions this year either, and that feels…weird. But sometimes you need breathing space to do things like Cope or Move House or the other unavoidable chunks of LifeStuff that emerge to trip us up after decades of sheet erosion have rearranged the landscape. May the year go smoothly onward and give you some breaks.

  2. Jersey loops have not disappeared. My older daughter (age 8) has recently made me just such a potholder… and I must say a much more handsome one than the one I made for *my* mother when I was that age. Really. The colors nowadays are much nicer.

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