Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Chuck it All - Run off to New Mexico and Live Green

A few months ago, I turned 45. I won't bore you with details, but my spirit and my brain had a throwdown that day, and I came to understand the whole mid-life crisis thing all too well.

I wear slacks to work and stare at a computer roughly eight hours every day. Most days I come home, do a (very) little housework, and then plant myself in front of the TV. And my hands itch to create, to build, to repair, to experience something more vibrant than a remote control, a keyboard, a mouse, and a coffee cup.

As far as midlife crises go, I guess it was pretty mild. I already have a young, beautiful, and loving wife. I don't fit comfortably in little red sports cars, and I do not want another gas burner anyway. One of the many little voices that day screamed for me to go get a cheap motorcycle and fly away as fast as it would carry me, but the practical voices kicked in and said things about burning gas, comfortable places to sleep, where I would carry the incorrigible greyhound, and how deeply I would miss my wife.

My faith, my wife, and my friends helped me through that patch. Thank you God and all others!

So, for those of you whose hands and spirits similarly itch to chuck it all and run away, I offer a pair of books that were written by people who did just that with a very eco-friendly slant. And strangely enough, both books were written by New Yorkers who chucked it all and moved to our neighbor to the west, New Mexico.

The first one, and definitely the funnier of the two, is Farewell My Subaru by Doug Fine. And if you are a Lubbockite and want to be really green about it, the copy I read is on the shelf over at the Mahan library. Start pedaling!

The second book, The Good Life Lab, is much more practical and inspirational, but not nearly as funny. Beware, both both books are likely to encourage your actions and your desires to be at odds with one another.

May your hands, your brain, and your spirit find a path where they are all happy. And thank you for taking the time to read this blog.