January 5: A brief detour

I know most of you had your hearts set on three or four hundred more words about the future of my music collection but I need to make a brief detour. Today I woke up thinking about what’s next. My promise to myself was to milk every one of 2022’s days to the fullest, and I’m still about that. The problem with thinking about what’s next is that it takes one out of the present and the present is all any of us have. No matter, what’s next is what I was thinking about.

I’ve been a paralegal who moonlights doing marketing and ad copy writing for a long time. I’m Ok with both but supporting myself on the marketing gig alone strikes me as a dubious proposition. Sure, I like macaroni and cheese but not for all three meals. The problem with the paralegal game is twofold. First, I’m old. It’s hard to imagine a bunch of firms being into hiring a 61 plus year old with a boatload of experience. Of course, I’m only in need of one job so a bunch of firms is unnecessary. The other problem is me. I’m only willing to do certain kinds of legal work (read: plaintiff) and I have no interest in ever, ever having another long commute that relies on public transportation or sitting in traffic while the second or third best years of my life slip quietly away.

Then there’s the internet and the idea of a being a freelancer. I’m at least somewhat comfortable with that idea having worked with freelancers quite a bit over the years and even getting some of my writing gigs through elance (now Upwork). That would be workable except for the 800 pound gorilla; medical insurance. Over the last fifteen years my insurance (which has been mercifully and graciously paid for by my employers) has gone from a shade over $200 a month to well over $1000.

We all know that there’s something fundamentally wrong with that kind of increase and we all know there’s not a thing we can do about it. Car insurance? Relatively steady over the same period. Medical? How about double the cost, then triple then $1000, then more. Well, I did get a prescription for my dermatitis. Thank God for the Affordable Care Act. I cannot imagine the slaughter we would all be facing without it.

So, those are the thoughts I had when my sleepy eyes opened this morning. I’d rather have woken up worrying about what to do with my damn LPs.

Oh well, there’s always tomorrow.

By the way, I can write a little about music today: While I’m writing this I’m listening to one of my earlier iTunes purchases from way back in 2006, Björn Olsson’s The Lobster. It’s been a while since I’ve listened to this and it’s cool to be reminded by just how clever and musical it is. It sounds like an otherworldly and unheard soundtrack to an unreleased Sergio Leone film, almost as if Ennio Morricone was born in Gotebörg, Sweden rather than Rome. There’s no flash and dazzle to Olsson’s style though his guitar playing is elemental and beautiful. He’s confident to let his songs bring the message, just the way I like it.

The source, you ask? My iPhone 11 streaming to my Skullcandy Crusher Evo. Damn nice and, yes, I do think I’ll write about these headphones someday soon.

Björn Olsson The Lobster

January 5: A brief detour