Windows

I don’t want to write about Will Smith slapping Chris Rock after he mocked his wife, except to say neither one of them ended up looking that great. A bad night for all concerned, but I’m seeing it as not my problem.

I really don’t want to write about what’s happening in Ukraine, except to say that the last person who tried to build an empire by conquering neighboring countries was Adolf Hitler and things didn’t turn out so well for him. If it looks like your Wikipedia article might begin with, “...failed worse than Hitler...” you may want to rethink your career goals. In the meantime, thousands of people are dead, millions are in despair, billions of dollars in property have been ruined, and an entire world is in turmoil, and for what? Testosterone isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. It seems President Putin didn’t get the memo about leaving the whole empire building thing behind about 70 years ago.

But since I don’t want to talk about that, instead, I think I’ll talk about the sunrise.

I enjoyed the beautiful sunrise today.

Maybe that’s because I spent three hours washing windows the day before.

Dirty windows can sneak up on you. A long winter, hard winds blowing dirt through the air, a certain amount of life being lived, moving through the usual routine and not noticing that the light is growing dimmer, the view is getting hazy. After a while, dim and discouraging can start to feel like normal.

That’s a mistake.

Some years are worse than others. I still think about the spring after I’d spent the winter installing sheetrock. After the last coat of paint went on and the tools were put away, I bumped a window with my elbow and was shocked at the glimmer of fresh light that shone through the glass I had wiped with my shirt sleeve. It took a lot of elbow grease and a whole roll of paper towels to brighten the view. Sometimes when things look grim, it takes a lot of work to set them right.

I guess I’m not talking about windows anymore.

This isn’t the worst spring I’ve had, but I’ve had better. I get up in the morning and read the news from Ukraine, and there’s nothing but heartbreak no matter how well the war is going. If I turn the page and check out what’s going on in Washington...heartbreak might not be the correct term, but there’s something happening there that makes my chest hurt. In my community, barely a week goes by without the death or illness of someone I cherish. Closer to home, my family is going through the same things that all families go through. Well, maybe not all families. I'm sure some people live lives filled with never ending rainbows and puppies - just no one I know.

Sometimes, there's not much you can do about, well, about many things. The inability to control can lead to feeling dark, with a faint haze clouding everything. When that happens, it's harder to remember that the bright and the beautiful still exist.

It does. You might just need to wash your windows.

Copyright 2022 Brent Olson