Twin Falls Idaho and I’m Hungry || Moab, UT to Twin Falls, ID

He stays a witness to life, so he endures…

…Through selfless action, fulfillment is attained.

– Lao Tzu

Iconik Coffee Roasters, I have forgiven you. I blame only myself. For, after all, I am the chump for feeling obligated to tip on a matcha latte that costs $7. But I have forgiven myself. In actuality, there is no need to forgive you. You could charge $100 for a matcha latte; I am not obligated to buy it. Indeed, I am obligated to do no thing. Nothing. I am only obligated to eat medjool dates.

And so from Santa Fe I drove north. And north, and north, and north. I passed through Pagosa Springs. I passed through Durango. In Durango I got a sandwich from the local co-op. I ate it in the parking lot. I drove around the town, testing my brakes. From there I set out even further west, passing Dolores and into Utah. In Utah I contemplated staying in Monticello, but didn’t like the look of the town as I approached it. I decided to press on to Moab. 

In Moab I had a burrito de adobada. I watched people dining inside, marveling at an activity I hadn’t seen in a year now. And now, in Idaho, where I currently am, I marvel even more. What are these people thinking? Do they think they’re immune? Do I think I’m immune? At the foot of my hotel there is a restaurant affectionately called “Jaker’s.” When I passed it recently en route to Chik Fil-A, it was packed. The booths were packed. The bar was packed. No one was wearing a mask. Everyone was having a great time, presumably, except for possibly the servers, who are privy to these superspreader events in the making. But then again, if they weren’t privy, would they have a job? Would they get tips? It’s a price to pay…

It’s interesting that wearing a mask seems to take such a political divide. It’s interesting that the number one factor for supporting Trump is whether or not you went to college.

But what about JC?

When I was in a park in Monterrey the other day pigeons gathered at my feet. There was a woman sitting in the plaza, wearing the kind of dress you might wear to church, and I thought, “How nice that that woman is enjoying this park. She seems in no hurry.”

Five minutes later she looked over at me and wailed, “Cristo viene….”

Cast off selfishness, and temper desire.

Give up learning, and you’ll be free from all your cares.

Must I fear what others fear?

OKkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk, enough of that. Time to shower. Time to shave, but I only have one razor, and I don’t think it’ll cut it (pun actually not intended). So I guess I’ll just take a shower. Take a shower and watch something on Hulu or fall asleep listening to the Tao. So much driving today. Too much driving. God, I just want to be home. But to get home I have to pass through Boise and Ontario and La Grande and Pendleton and the Tri-cities and Yakima and, god forbid, ELLENSBURG. Ohhhhh, maybe I should just go to Leavenworth. Maybe I should just go there, and stay there. Maybe I should cut the mooring lines to my boat…..

I hope all of you are having a great Friday night. I hope you all have a great weekend. And I hope that you sleep well.

– Wetzler

 

 

Lockdown Love

This time of quarantine has led me to regularly committing some of the seven deadly sins, among them sloth and gluttony. Sloth in the form of basically never working out; my new idea of exercise is going to the field by my former high school, juggling a soccer ball 50 times, and calling it an afternoon. Gluttony comes in the form of buying a half gallon of yogurt and then demolishing it via repeated, semi-blacked out trips to the kitchen. But the yogurt is grass-fed.

In many ways I like the lockdown for the simplicity it brings. My days consist of work, of long walks, of watching Jeopardy! with my parents at 7:30pm, of thinking about what I’ll do when the lockdown is over, and the very occasional visit with a friend. The other day my best friend and went on a little tour of the Olympic Peninsula, albeit in separate cars for the driving portions, and (usually) six feet apart for the portions on foot. We spent a substantial chunk of time doing one of my favorite activities: looking out at the ocean waiting for waves. The ocean is one of those things you can look at for a long time and not get bored. On the contrary, your spirit seems to grow stronger the longer you look at it, as if the ocean itself were occupying the depths of your soul. Things like YouTube, on the other hand, have just the opposite effect. Thirty minutes of unstructured time on YouTube are 30 minutes you’ll never get back, 30 minutes in which your soul becomes more impoverished, 30 minutes that would be much better spent just staring at a wall. In fact, if you stared at a wall for 30 minutes I think you might learn more about yourself than by doing just about any other activity. It’s essentially meditation, after all.

Which reminds me of the time I went to a free transcendental meditation introductory class in Vancouver one time. The girl leading the class was drop-dead gorgeous. Her name was something like Meike and she was either from the Netherlands (OK actually I’m positive she was from the Netherlands) of something like half-Chinese half-Dutch descent and thus spoke Dutch, English, Mandarin, and probably something else tantalizing like Zulu, and I was hopelessly besotted in her presence, but also mystified by the fact that she appeared to believe in such garbage. In “official” transcendental meditation centers, which are peppered all over the world, you pay something ridiculous like $1000 to have a few hours with an expert who will give you your mantra, which you will then ostensibly use for the rest of your life to enter a meditative state and conquer the world (or at least yourself). One girl in my class said, “Why does it cost so much?” at which Meike MIGHT have blushed. But I’m pretty sure she didn’t. I’m pretty sure if there’s one question people slinging TM are prepared for, it’s that. Because it’s the only question anyone wants to ask when they’re faced with the prospect of paying a thousand dollars for a syllable.

Lockdown would be the perfect time to meditate. I am not meditating at all. Instead I’m playing video games, and drinking caffeinated beverages, and periodically going into my parents’ garage to hang from a 2×6 screwed into the wall. So far I’m up to just over 20 seconds. I read an article the other day in the NY Times that old people actually prefer the lockdown to normal life. And I can totally see where they’re coming from. I wouldn’t like lockdown forever, but a longstanding dream of mine has been to be marooned on a deserted island. And this is sort of like that. Marooned in a house with my parents and Alex Trebek and his insistence on pronouncing French phrases with the thickest accent possible. I guess what I’m trying to say is this: You don’t have to hate lockdown. You can, but there’s also the option of not being that bummed about it. Or even liking it. Or even loving it. And for now, I’m at least going to try to choose love.