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Sunday, July 20, 2003:

Great activity.  Everyone writes ten things they’d like to do, and the parts of what would be, for them, a perfect day.  Each response reflects its author: Sharon is busy and wholesome, Caitlin wide ranging and sociable, Drew mostly wants to be by herself in a movie theatre, Sarah wants to run and play, Spence holds to a sort of police motif, while Matt is smilingly unfocused.  Claire’s life, I hope, is a perfect day.  For my part, my fantasies, which are fairly modest, tend to come true as it is.  Mostly it’s fun to think of providing these things for these people.  Energy can flag in the execution, however.

Monday, July 5, 2004 Lethbridge, Southern Alberta, Canada

All of us remove to the old Gyro park.  These recreational spaces of my own youth are almost touchingly minimal.  My feelings are nostalgically tender, but the kids’ engagement—bigs caring for littles, having fun in their own right—suggest that there’s something more going on.  Recreational realism?  The more the spectacular is reduced, the greater our threshold of significance.  These plain, poignant rides, when we meet them generously, and on their own terms, are practically transcendental: sufficient to bring us to each other, and then…

A little fountain.  A big wood swing.  The boys are thriving especially, processing all this in lightning fashion and al lightning speed, fashioning it all into their own fantasies.  The girls appear to be plenty cheerful without the transformations.  There’s Sharon, self-sufficient.  As for me, this is the transformation, the happiness vaguely pictured and hoped for in youth, undramatically and most satisfyingly made flesh.

Hey kids!  More history?  Southgate?  The ravine?  No thanks, Dad.  Just as well— sufficient is sufficient.

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Posted on February 11, 2012. Category: actuality · Cluster: ·