Anne Jackley by Here in Van Nuys
Anne Jackley, a photo by Here in Van Nuys on Flickr.

(Photo has nothing to do with following story)

It was a great year, at times, with a cool job and fascinating travel.

And then it was a petty, insignificant, entrapping year, a time where I was caught up in a web of misunderstandings and explosive incidents adding up to nothing. The fiery meltdowns of adolescence reappeared again, in middle age.

Longtime friendships imploded and vanished, precipitated by unpredictable events that were so small, so preposterous, so unimportant that I hesitate to even write of them.

And last week, in the post-vacation entropy of Van Nuys, I experienced more of the crazy relationship weather of Los Angeles: unreturned phone calls and emails from a “best friend”; an angry employer who told me to “man up” because his equipment failed for the umpteenth time; an art show invitation that came and went after my questions about hanging photos on walls or placing on tables infuriated the temperamental producer; a renter hiding a large five gallon jug of urine in his closet.

All of these got me angry, upset, mad and eventually laughing, moments of human comedy that were stupid, accidental and stunningly unimportant.

What I had in real life was echoed in Facebook. The local neighborhood page was full of posts about stolen Halloween decorations, loud leaf blowers, the crew of Workaholics taking over the street, an uncut limb from a tree crushing a vinyl fence, someone’s lost iphone.

We go crazy sometimes from too much that matters too little. That’s the way I felt for much of the time since I came back from the trip of a lifetime.

4 thoughts on “Swamped in Insignificance

  1. That was me with the stolen Halloween decorations (happened at my significant others house and mine). It had me rather bummed out at first. But I realize that is the price of living in a big city. So, oh well. Thieves be damned, I will put out stuff again! But I will just wait till the day of, going forward.


    1. Kathryn,

      Actually it is not a small thing to have your house vandalized, burglarized or items stolen. I had a small electronic device on my lawn to proven pets from peeing. It was stolen a year ago by someone collecting scrap metal. All these things wear us down. Sorry about your Halloween decorations.


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