Enjoy Everything in Between

So, there I was, drinking a cool glass of Pepsi Max with ice cubes, playing Tropico 3 (bloody Steam managed to lure me out of another few Euros with a weekend offer), when a lightning suddenly lit up the living room, shortly followed by a not-so-surprising boom-like noise. I’m not sure if I’ve ever seen lightning in Oslo in May before. Anyone?

Being a rather paranoid guy, standard procedure during lightning storms is to rip out every electrical chord in the apartment. Nowadays, I can’t do that since VBOX requires both power and an internet connection to keep this site alive. I mean, what would the internet come to if it suddenly went offline? I’m not sure if we can even begin to imagine the consequences. The server has managed to stay up for 106 days and counting, by the way. What a nice, little server.

And now for something completely different.

Back in 2008 a colleague of mine got cancer. By the time it was discovered, it has spread to various parts of his body and the doctors decided to start treatment, but the forecast was grim. Fortunately, the treatment was more efficient than they initially thought it would be, and he has now been through surgery two times. Even though he is not running around yet, he is at least breathing. I don’t have much contact with him, except for the odd text message. This is partly because I don’t want to interfere and be an annoyance, and partly because cancer and death scares the crap out of me. Yes, I’m a coward.

Late 2009, I learned that another colleague also had cancer, and not the good kind of cancer (if there is such a thing), she had pancreatic cancer, also known as The Silent Killer. I recommend that you don’t read anything about the symptoms, because you will get them if you do. The recovery rate is practically nill, and unfortunately, the cancer was not discovered until it was way too late. No treatment really had any effect and she passed away in the end of March.

At the age of 32.

Being 32 myself, it was an unwelcome reminder of my own mortality. I’m not getting any younger. During dinner with some friends, we did talk about this, realizing that we were past the point in life where we were attending more weddings than funerals, and would probably be tilting the other way instead. At least until some of our friends moved on to their second marriages. Of course we don’t want that to happen, but you all know the statistics of Western marriages.

At her funeral on a sunny early April afternoon, watching the coffin being carried from the church to her final resting place, I started thinking about how I’m living my own life. The conclusion was that I’m, at the end of the day, living a rather good life without too many worries. Quite few, actually. But I don’t think I’m enjoying it enough, letting public opinion and my own rational and pragmatic sense control too much of everything I do.

As a rather weird example, let’s look at my attempts at avoiding sugar. For about four years now, I’ve tried to eat as little sugar as possible. Why? Because it’s not healthy to eat too much sugar. But does it matter that I eat sugar if I don’t overdo it? Probably not, and that’s the case with most things in life: As long as you don’t overdo it, you’re OK. I also exercise regularly, and I’m far from overweight. If anything, I should probably gain a few pounds. So my no-sugar reign of terror is now over. If I want to have some candy, I’m having some candy. If I want to stay at home on a Saturday evening, I will, despite the fact that the unwritten laws of society states that only losers do that. If anything in my life is not like I want it, I will try to do something about it quickly and not delay as I normally would, because tomorrow it might be too late.

Will I manage to really do that? Probably not, because I’ve had a lot of good ideas over the years that have just silently dissolved. But at least it’s an attitude with a lot of good potential. Maybe it’s something you should consider yourself?

tl;dr; fuck it - life’s too short, have that chocolate bar.


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