This is not really a diary, since it is not where I hold my secrets, and it is no longer a dairy since I no longer milk it for cheese. But it is a kind of touchstone, a measure in time and a placeholder to compare how much taller I'm growing every year since the marks on the bedroom door jamb haven't changed in years.
But it is not much of a journal if you don't occasionally look back at what you've written. I only hate that this sentiment has crept up upon me coincidentally at the time of year where retrospectives are cliché. (COINCIDENCE, I TELL YOU)
As dull an existence as I live, reading old entries comes with a definite thrill, being as how I know what the symbols mean. I'm in on the back story. It is wonderful and nauseating and addictive and cringe-worthy, and often sad and sometimes whimsical, and it makes me long and regret and contemplate. I want to do it all over again just like it was, and I want to re-write it and do it differently. This is all perfectly normal (SAVE FOR THE SHARING IT WITH
MILLIONS dozens OF PEOPLE ON-LINE)
Over the weekend, a group of us drove to a casino up north of Seattle to play cards. We play a small stakes Texas Hold'em game twice a month, with a $10 buy in, and I do well, but have only been tentatively interested in playing the real thing. I am just not cut out for poker, especially with strangers. I cannot mask my intentions, and so much of this is clear to me in reading old entries.
The game had a $100 minimum buy-in, so I brought $300 with me and braced myself to quit once I had lost $200. The first hand was a lousy portent for things to come. My hands shake badly at these games, and I have yet to find some internet home remedy that works. Alcohol works. But booze is the bane of the amateur poker player. NOPE.
So for the most part, I just didn't play. I folded hand after hand until I was low on chips from the blinds, and went all in a couple of times. Got lucky and won those few hands I played. And over the course of 8 hours looked down and realized that even though I had only played maybe a dozen times, I had won all but a few of those hands. I quit when I was $300 up, my head pounding from the stress of thinking and watching and smoke and stagnation.
It wasn't enjoyable, but the addiction was there. It was like reading old entries. You feel like you really won big, but the shaking, oh the shaking. And you say to yourself, 'That was a good experience. Never again.' I'll more than likely be back.
More mundanely, I volunteered at my daughter's school yesterday. An hour in, the principal sent a page to let me know my son had missed his bus (ONE KID GETS ATTENTION, THE OTHER WANTS IT, TOO), so I WALKED home and drove him to his school. When I got back to my daughter's class, there was a fire drill. After the drill, my daughter told me that she was feeling sick, so we left. This is why they say volunteerism doesn't pay.