Saturday, August 11, 2012

about a week into lubbock and we're totally hooked by the lazy-river pool, an outdoor part of the student recreation center about three long blocks from our house. texas is hot so we often get a ride there, but once we're there we get in this three-and-a-half-foot current that carries virtually all of lubbock around in a wide loopy circle as a really fun part of a swimming pool. almost every day we go. this is ok since i know almost nobody except a few people i've met through jobs that haven't started yet.

how do i feel about lubbock? well, it's hot and open, not much to block the sun and you soon come to appreciate the scraggly trees they do have like these old texas oaks i've found, and when you find these trees you tend to cherish the shade and run for a hose to water them as they undoubtedly need it. i suppose if you're an old-timer you spit on them and that's enough, but, when i see my neighbors water their lawns i figure, if you can make your grass green, i'll keep this scrawny old tree alive since at least it's giving me some shade. then everyone's real friendly, and i like that, it's hoddy y'all this and hoddy y'all that and that's ok with me, pretty soon i'll be doing that hoddy y'all stuff too without the least bit self-consciousness. and they're genuinely helpful and generous, and i get the feeling they look at us northerners like wow, you can belt out your business right away without even stopping to say hoddy y'all how ya been?. but that's the way we northerners are, not only that but a little aggravated that the north is sinking in its own quicksand, while texas and its buddies down here are just hopping along.

so i started my own site about this town and the stuff i found, starting with the different songs that croon about "somewhere in texas" and various other things i want to explore. the first thing i want to explore is the lazy river, i've been almost nowhere else, but, i'm also interested in natalie maines, bobby knight, shelby knox, various characters around town, what became of them, what people say about them. for example, are we truly in the heart of football-as-religion country, or are there some non-believers around? will they kill me if i say that football should be illegal, or that it kills people, or both? i have no idea. or that george w was the worst president in the entire history of the u.s.a. this is something i don't often repeat; it's negative, it's hurtful, natalie maines lost her career over saying something to that effect, course she said it in england, in 2003 to be exact, in front of everyone, whereas i, here i am burying it deep in my blog where nobody will even read it. but it's true, and i hate to say it. i'm in the heart of bush country. and they might not even know, i mean, he was ok for texas, texas had plenty of money, and he'd always had plenty of money, the whole time he was governor there was oil money all over the place. then, he runs the country, couple wars over the wrong thing, or whatev, and here we are, halliburton lost a few bill, now we owe a fortune, now china won't pay my retirement, and we're wondering where we're going and what's this hand basket we're in.

but i'm nothing if not discrete, so i probably won't say this every day, to everyone i meet, and in fact will wear my tt hat and be downright agreeable most of the time. they have, after all, made me a job, and i'm difficult to employ. they're even getting me an office, and maybe a computer, and this will be better than retiring, because there's stuff i still want to do. and we'll keep working that lazy river for a while; we're all getting tans and some wrinkles and already everyone recognizes our blue van even though it lives in a garage, because who drives around in a blue van? everyone's got white trucks. a blue van is like, the opposite of normal.

but hey like i say they're polite, and well-meaning, and it wasn't their fault george w was as bad as he was. it's actually quite a diverse culture, with a huge number of vietnamese, mexicans, blacks, all kinds of folks around, and they jump in this lazy river regularly and you get to reflect on the kind of town you live in, see these folks cruising around the bend, or watching from the side, or whatev. so life goes on and i'm here, and i'll make it one way or the other, and so will my kids, they're a little bored so far, but they'll find kids, soon enough i hope. when school starts in about two weeks, we'll all be shooting down that lazy river, the lazy river of time, of school itself, the river of life, hang on, if you go under don't stay under, let the river just push you once in a while.

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