[We interrupt the jacaranda for this (by Doug standards) brief non-photo interlude. Some reading may be required. Don't be alarmed.]
I do not generally mention on the blahg here how things are going, because typically when I am inspired things aren’t necessarily great (at least at that moment), but no one wants to read too much despondent rhetoric unless it’s mildly amusing. At any given moment, the answer to the question of how things are going (in general) is simultaneously: everything is great, and everything sucks.
In my experience, either you get that or you don’t; the dichotomy of it isn’t so much how I choose to see the world; it merely is how I see it.
Really, it seems the gauge of how well things are going tends to be whether anything particularly unfortunate has befallen one. I must be doing well by virtue of the fact I have not been injured, my car hasn’t broken down, my home hasn’t been destroyed by natural disaster, my computer has not crashed more than usual, my paychecks continue to clear, and my girlfriend continues to put up with me. While any of those ceasing to be the case would be justifiable cause for me to declare things aren’t going so well (some far less well than others, of course), that they continue I consider a sort of baseline for my general existence; I’m not so arrogant (read: stupid) as to expect that, and I do appreciate that I have those elements in place, if I am being completely honest their continued inclusion in my life elicits in me a tepid declaration of all being good. Perhaps that’s horrible of me, and it certainly suggests I’m taking them for granted—because more or less I am.
I acknowledge those elements as what I wanted, but it seems our nature as humans is to grow accustomed to our circumstances, and eventually to need more than the usual situation to register on the good radar (so to speak); our instruments get recalibrated when the circumstances persist, and like any drug that brings euphoria, over time it takes more to get the same effect.
Perhaps you’re just happy all the time. Bless your heart for being able to do so. I’m happy some of the time, unhappy some of the time, but most of the time I’m kind of in-between.
At best, I can only answer the question: “How are things right this minute?” The immediate condition is easily assessed, a conclusion easily reached. However, answering a temporary query in a context that lingers into perpetuity (or whatever “lifespan” can be attributed to the electronic written word) proves inherently flawed; it’s carrying on a conversation with someone whose mood one cannot gauge.
It’s not that the reader cannot bear in mind that it was merely capturing a moment’s emotion, but that the reader must try to put aside his or her own emotions at the time he or she is reading it the same way the writer tried to put aside his when he wrote it.
It’s akin to discussing the weather in a letter (for this example we're going old school). The weather may be perfectly suitable as an explanation for some activity (it was so hot we had to seek refuge in the pool) or lack of activity (the game was rained out), but in and of itself, it’s tantamount to declaring, “I can think of nothing worth writing despite the fact that such is what I’m doing but I dare not just put it off for a while until I am duly inspired; this is the only time I have for you,” without saying so in those exact terms.
Real scorcher today, eh?