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  • Rick Whitlow

Sittin On The Dock Of The Bay.


In June of 2019 I celebrated my 66th birthday. I found myself "Sitting On The Dock Of The Bay." With all due respect to Otis Redding, the Bay was Tampa, not San Francisco. Looking back on all those good times, and asking. "When in life is it okay, to be okay?" At this stage of life I find myself looking back at the many people, places, and things that I have done. Evaluating the successes, failures, and overall body of work. Finding myself somewhat pleased, and okay with most that has happened, and fine with all that didn't happen. As the song says - "Regrets? I've had a few, but then again too few to mention." The regret that always gets mentioned during these reflections is the one in which I apologize for not being more generous with my space and time. It is a flaw that I am using this remaining time to correct, sincerely reaching out to friends, and foes alike, simply to say hello, and thank them for crossing paths with me, whether our time was for a few seconds, a few minutes, or a few years. If I was able to say or do something that made you feel better, then my time would have been well spent.

I like to think that more than a person or two has been surprised to get a call, text, or email from me. Simply asking "How are you doing?"

I no longer find the profound question "So What Now?" as frightening as it may have been twenty years ago, or even ten years ago. It's amazing how peaceful day-to-day life can be once one becomes comfortable with whom they have become. I suppose if I was looking for something to worry about it would be what is to become of the future generations? My children, their children, and beyond.

I so wish that different things were happening in this very troubled world. Those who are inclined to seek answers barely know where to start. The political climate is such that has caused me to cut some interactions and visits short, because I have been disappointed and surprised with the positions some of my one time friends have taken on issues that effect me directly. Taking those positions because they may have a few extra dollars in their 401K retirement plans. Or because they think anyone who does not look like them is a threat to their safety and welfare. It is no secret that come election day in 2020, I would vote for a cold ham sandwich, or anything not named Trump. There I proudly said it. We have to do better and get it right in 2020. In the meantime, I'll just sit here on the dock of the bay, and watch the ships roll in, and watch them roll away again.


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