Monday, October 12, 2009

Badadadada-dada Thanksgiving

Earlier today, long weekend and whatnot, we spent some time talking to the guy next door. Turns out he's been laid off, for a while now.

After decades of hard labour and stress, he assures us he's having, at long last, a real great time.
Slow down, you move too fast,
You got to make the mornin' last.
Just kickin' down the cobblestones
Lookin' for fun and
Feelin' groovy...
Badadadada-dada feelin' groovy...
The slang is dated, the feelin' is current. He showed us an e-mail he sent to a previous co-worker:

I discovered I'm again enjoying the simpler stuff, even taking pleasure in, say, the occasional cleaning of old stacks of papers (or the basement), or doing the boring chores I've been dutifully postponing for years. I remember years ago (we were still in the old building), crossing the parking lot towards the bus station at the end of the day, I noticed a colleague walking ahead of me. She stopped, then stooped a bit to smell the flowers near the manufacturing building. [I was living in a cliché!] At the time I was sure she must have been a student (that age, when we are all romantic and everything). Now that I think about it, I'm inclined to reconsider — maybe she has also been laid off!?
Hello lampost
Whatcha knowin'?
I've come to watch your flowers growin'.
Ain'tcha got no rhymes for me?
Doo-it an' doo-doo,
Feelin' groovy...
Badadadada-dada feelin' groovy...
He worked (in and around the house) this entire Labour Day, last month. When everybody rested. Never having taken a real vacation in so many years of employment, or too many weekends for that matter (thanks to the on-line technology), he got into the habit of being a bit of the contrarian. And now that all that free time he's owed has been granted, in one big chunk, he allows himself the occasional transgression.
I've got no deeds to do,
No promises to keep.
I'm dappled and drowsy and ready to sleep.
Let the morningtime drop all its petals on me...
Life, I love you,
All is groovy...
Guy next door, not one to lay about, updated his skills scrupulously during this period. He's proficient now, for example, at catching fruit flies (mid-air), thanks to the garbage strike which provided Toronto with an abundance of these. He's having a riot every time he opens the credit card bill (the bills, sure enough, keep coming as if nothing changed — which, in a way, is reassuring), and reads the travel-protection inserts that seem to have started appearing the exact week he was, mercifully, let go. We are committed to offering you travel protection solutions that can keep you covered wherever you go. Does he need insurance for traveling around his own backyard? For dragging the garbage bins to the curb and back once a week?

He finds all the recent news about the end of the recession a bit alarming. If jobs reappear, and everybody gets working again, is miserable, and shops patriotically in support of the economy, will people's oh-that-poor-guy feelings of sympathy turn into plain oh-that-lazy-bum resentment?!...

For now, he's thankful. Doo-it an' doo-doo, Happy Thanksgiving!

Feelin' Groovy (The 59th Street Bridge Song): lyrics by Paul Simon. Simon & Garfunkel, Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme, 1966.

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