Punxatawny Day

Today I’ve been sober for 12,395 days.

Accordign to whatculture.com, that’s how long Phil was stuck in Punxatawny:


I don’t know if I agree with their analysis, but I might as well. They’re smarter than I am.

I’m in a place right now where I’ve pretty much figured out that just about anybody is smarter than I am ๐Ÿ™‚

Work these days is a constant reminder that I’m not even as smart as I used to be. I’ve also been taking Lent as an opportunity to not share in meetings, unless directly called upon to do so (with the exception of our Thursday night book study, for which Ethel and I feel a responsibility) – and sitting there shutting up, I’m aware of just how well I know the words in the Big Book, and just how poorly I’m implementing them in my life.

It took Phil Connors 12,395 days to learn French, ice sculpture, ragtime and classical piano, chiropractic, card throwing, changing a tire, CPR, the Heimlich maneuver, and all the answers to that day’s Jeopardy game show. In addition, he also learned selflessness – which was the whole point.

In the last 12,395 days, I seem to have gotten DUMBER. I’ve learned a little Spanish and forgotten it. I’ve learned some banjo and mandolin, but keep forgetting the chord charts. I’ve learned how to ski – okay, that one I’ve retained! I got a degree in Computer Science with a Mathematics minor; as far as the math goes, I might be able to do a first derivative of a simple function, but I couldn’t integrate anything at all.

And based on what I’ve bumped into this week on the job, what Computer Science I learned once upon a time doesn’t seem to apply anymore.

And, no, I haven’t learned selflessness. I have, I suspect, learned how important selflessness is, but learning that hasn’t kept me from being completely self-absorbed (much to my dismay – but that very dismay is me saying “why can’t I learn it?” which is self-pity, which is…there we go again).

This morning, I woke up and did my morning “meditation”, which is this case turned into worrying while reading spiritual books. There’s some stuff happening at work that may result in my retiring a little quicker than I would have wanted. More self-absorption; nobody cares about this but me*, and perhaps Ethel.

It’s day 12,395, but I’m not going to be released from my repetitive cycle of learning. As I understand from those who’ve done the reading in ancient Hindu or Buddhist texts, it’s supposed to be more like 10,000 LIFETIMES, not 12,395 days. I suspect that, in Phil’s case, it’s more obvious and apparent that he’s being shown the same lessons over and over, since he doesn’t even get the illusion of time passing; with the rest of us, we forget – from year to year, or from lifetime to lifetime (if that’s the case)** that we’ve made this mess before in the same way.

But, at least, I’m not stuck in northern Pennsylvania in February ๐Ÿ™‚


*apparently I haven’t learned English, either, because that grammar looks wrong as heck to me. It LOOKS like it should be “nobody cares about this but I”, but that sounds really weird. But, then, the spelling of “weird” looks weird, since it breaks the “I before E” rule.

**I’ve made a conscious decision to go ahead and “believe” that man is sentenced “once to die and then the Judgment”, out of the New Testament, but that decision is based not on any revelation, learning or intuition, but just because – I’m tired, dang it.

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