Through the bright past – Morning sun

Can you imagine us many years from today

Sit quietly on a bench in the park

It’s weird being 70 years old

– Paul Simon from “Old Friends”

Strange days have found us And through their strange hours

We linger alone

– Doors from “Strange Days”

Don’t confront me with my failures

I didn’t forget them

– Jackson Browne from “These Days”

REMUS 1/15/22 – Oscar Wilde is said to have remarked, “Any woman who tells her age will say anything.” In that respect, given my blabbermouth tendencies and amusing nature, I guess I’m lucky I’m a guy. I turned 70 last summer, a development I still find difficult. In my head, I still feel a lot like the clumsy young seeker I was 50 years ago.

Perhaps due to my new status as a therapist, I often find myself reflecting on the past, often guessing about many of my previous decisions, and habitually lacking direction. Of course, this is a futile exercise because what has been done is done. But that has never stopped me before.

I think back to my years at Michigan State and wonder why I didn’t pursue a degree in fields I was passionate about like art, paleontology or astronomy. At the time, I reasoned that as a lawyer, I could keep my bohemian credit and still make a decent living, defending drug and political prisoner cases, William Kunstler.

In my senior year, I took the LSAT and got a 157, not an entirely bad score, since I overslept twice on the exam. After a trip to the university medical center a few days later, I found out I had mono.

I never applied to law school. My GPA is excellent C+.

For six months after graduating, I ran a paint team for a construction outfit in an apartment complex in the far west of Lansing. I shut down a bar in East Lansing every night I don’t go up north to fish for salmon.
That summer, I watched the movie “The Paper Chase,” starring the great John Houseman as a brilliant albeit serious Harvard law professor. I was an unimpressive bloodsucker, I immediately became homesick for college life and re-enrolled for another college degree at Michigan State.

My girlfriend at that time was a final year student, majoring in Advertising. As a crack illustrator, I assisted her in any artwork related tasks. She always gets good grades on anything I do so I thought, ‘What the hell, I’ve reached my full potential and got my second bachelor’s degree in Advertising. I was warmly welcomed by the Spartan School of Communication. They still ask for my money.

I graduated for the second time after three semesters. This time I passed most of my classes, never scoring below B+. I took up a management position with Michigan retailer giant Meijer, ran three of their off-site specialty clothing stores and initially made more money than most of my other friends. But I have never applied to an advertising agency. I never applied for Doyle, Dane, Bernbach in New York or Cramer-Krasslet in Chicago. During our brief stay in Los Angeles, I worked on 4-color separation assembly for prints but never applied for a Young Company or a Creative Artist.

Why not? Who knows? I don’t feel qualified somehow. Now that sounds crazy.

I mulled over these wasted opportunities while filming vinyl with my son Michael last week. Between the Talking Heads and the Underwater Boys, he said to me seriously, “Dad, if you had done it differently, I probably wouldn’t be here.”

We both agree that his existence is a plus.

“You can stay here and drive a Lexus instead of a Dodge,” I suggested.

“No, if you haven’t left LA, moved to the mountains and moved to the farm, that’s fine. . . you told me I was conceived there. “

“Yes,” I agreed, “Owning a horse puts your mother in a good mood.”

“And you will never work at WATCH,” he added.

He was right. Six years working with XEM program clients with disabilities has been one of the most exciting and rewarding years of my life.

“Also,” Michael said, “You’re not Don Draper, you’re fucking beatnik. You are Jaffy Ryder. ”

And so it went.

Email: Through the bright past – Morning sun

Dustin Huang

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