Friday, June 08, 2007

Let's Just Say...

Let's just say the year I turned 40 was when I started this blog. It was also when I started reading the first of Richard Ford's trilogy of novels, starting with The Sportswriter, then Independence Day, and ending with The Lay of the Land.

The audience for these books are really mid-50s and older, but I was always a little precocious. Then again, look where precociousness gets you -- an early grave, I say.

The books are interesting but depressing. They tackle deep issues, of confronting and taking stock of your life. Interesting in that it's good writing and I could not stop reading it but couldn't for the life you remember all that much about it. Depressing in that it made me reflect on my own life and lack of meaning in it.

From this moment on, from the 40s onwards, it's no more about becoming, more about who you've become and it's slide downwards toward the big D... Death.

From 35 onwards, you make no more new friends. It seemed so easy when I was younger. I was a loner, but I had a few friends. I've moved around, lost touch with a few, made new ones. But now? With a wife and kid, how do I make new friends?

In the final book of the trilogy, The Lay of the Land, the central character, Frank Bascombe, 55, tries to make sense of it all. Asking himself, is this it? As am I.


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