“REST / RANT / LIVE” (repeat)

Dear President Trump,

In the interest of keeping it real and not so much about you, I’m going to give you a micro-slice from my day. Last night I mentally mapped out this morning’s walk and made a plan to go visit the legions of little clay creature/people about a mile south of us across the ravine. I’m not sure if I’ve told you about them before – please forgive me if I have (or don’t, either way is fine in this non-contingent, one-sided pen pal deal we have going). So anyway, there are probably between a 100 and 125 of these three-ish inch ghoulish clay figurines bolted to a tree stump in a nature strip in front of a grand old house on 17th Ave. NE. They’re each different and they’re each mildly disturbing; they’re like little people from someone’s sort of amusing but mostly very creepy nightmare. There’s another series of them that are maybe 7-8” long that were formed so they sit on the fence ledge around the front yard. These faux-peeps are arranged in little clusters of two to four, leaning into each other, pointing at things in the distance, or just gazing rather forlornly off into space. They are super weird. And they make a terrific, manageable walk destination, which I find I need more and more as these days wear on; it just doesn’t do anymore to set out without a plan – I need more of a sense of control than that lately.

The creatures are definitely noteworthy, but the real reason to tell you about this morning’s walk was what I saw after I left them and shortly before I turned for home. I was crossing University Ave and noticed a very unusually colored car parked alongside the park right there; the car body is a bright, bright Kelly green and the doors are all bright white. So that combo is pretty out there, but it get’s way better – on both of the backseat doors the owner (presumably) has used Kelly green block letters to spell out:

REST   RANT
LIVE

I love it. It’s hard to say what the person was intending with this rather bold messaging, but in my humble opinion, it’s pretty much a mantra to live by. At first I thought maybe the “LIVE” part was unnecessary and that “REST / RANT / REPEAT” might be better. I do think it has more of a ring to it and I rather like the 3-R’s quality, but as I’ve contemplated it further, I think the “LIVE” bit is important. If all we did was rest and rant and then repeat we’d probably make ourselves crazy pretty fast and we’d surely alienate everyone around us in no time flat. We rather have to do some living alongside the resting and ranting to make the resting necessary and to have a prayer of keeping the ranting relevant and righteous. Essentially, we have to be out living and doing and engaging if we hope to be the least bit indulged when we rant since it’s no good just spouting off from one’s pile of cushions in between popping bon bons.

There’s probably more to say about this idea of centering one’s life around “REST / RANT / LIVE” (and probably lots more to say about someone who would emblazon their car with this message!), but it’s been a crazy long day complete with a sick dog (who seems better now, thank you) and a serious case of Zoom over-exposure that’s left me needing rest so I’m going to sign off early.

May we be safe to live.
May we indulge ourselves and one another in the occasional righteous, relevant rant.
May we get the rest we need to stay healthy (so we can live and rant).
May we accept all the odd creatures that make life interesting.

Sincerely,
Tracy Simpson

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