August 2020

by Tom Swift

31 Monday

  • Being part of a community of learners.
  • The Sunday newspaper.
  • The ongoing conversation in your head.
  • Mobility day.
  • Sun lamps.
  • Egg-and-cheese breakfast sandwiches.
  • A personal challenge.
  • Cod sandwiches with tartar sauce.

28 Friday

  • Going for a ride to the park.
  • A break in the humidity.
  • Bill-pay.
  • The Animal Humane Society.

26 Wednesday

  • Jennifer Grey’s old nose.
  • The transformative power of movies.
  • Warm rain on your face during the evening walk.
  • Cheeseburgers.

25 Tuesday

  • Short weeks.
  • Long summers.
  • When the draft comes together quickly.
  • War Games.
  • The moment when the laundry is done and the sheets are back on the bed.
  • Celery and almond butter.

24 Monday

  • Your porch.
  • A break.
  • Writing time.
  • Reading time.
  • The clarity of anger.
  • The way the volume of anger lessens if you let it. If you respect it, don’t try to reject it, but let it follow its course.
  • Unexpected wind.
  • Driving with the windows down.
  • Working out before you have a chance to talk yourself out of it.
  • The sound of raindrops on the roof of your porch.

23 Sunday

  • Being fired up.
  • The freedom that comes from restriction.
  • The ability to write in any style.
  • Tall trees.

22 Saturday

  • Having a kind and capable handyman in your life.
  • New lights.
  • Taking the easy way.
  • Getting to HomeDepot first thing.
  • Progress over perfection.
  • Not buying more than you need.
  • The people of the Lincoln Project. You joined one of their Zooms and, wow, some smart people who care about this country.
  • Hope for November.
  • When the world shows you a way to contribute to a cause you care about.
  • Evening rain.

21 Friday

  • Fear.
  • Boundaries.
  • Lowering your personal tolerance for bullshit.
  • The Enchiridion on audio.
  • Light stores.
  • The Lincoln Project.

20 Thursday

  • Anger.
  • Conflict.
  • Integrity.
  • The strength to walk away.

19 Wednesday

  • Getting back to the gym.
  • Guilt: a built-in correction mechanism.
  • Learning opportunities.
  • Preparation.
  • Chocolate.
  • Morning darkness.
  • The glow of the garage light.
  • Four focused breaths.
  • Venus.
  • Meditations. Not the act, but rather the book; it arrived in the mail.

17 Monday

  • Patience.
  • Not forcing it.
  • Feet up.
  • Coffee time.
  • Study time.
  • Pink clouds.
  • Maple leaves rustling.

16 Sunday

  • Perfect mornings.
  • When the sun sits on the low on the horizon.
  • Your Maple tree.
  • Comebacks.
  • Marcus Aurelius.
  • Clarity of purpose.
  • A shift in focus.
  • Grass.
  • Dew.
  • Getting right to it.

14 Friday

  • Your health.
  • Postal workers.
  • Your words.
  • The power of the right ones. Just the right ones.
  • The weight of facts. Emotion is in the details.
  • Kamala Harris.
  • Finding your way back.
  • Honesty.

9 Sunday

  • Naps.
  • Deep breaths.
  • Ginger tea.
  • Water.
  • Air.

8 Saturday

  • The body’s feedback.
  • Talking it out. With a good person. Who is also a friend.
  • Letting the conversation come to you.
  • Having something useful to say.
  • Not saying too much. For a change.
  • The men and women who are trying as hard as they can to understand the coronavirus — so that their understanding can save lives and reduce suffering.
  • Cool air.
  • Your breath.
  • Understanding friends.
  • Choosing vulnerability.

6 Thursday

  • When there isn’t a line at Trader Joe’s.
  • A full fridge.
  • A full belly.
  • The attitude change that comes from a decent workout.
  • Knowing your business.
  • The sun reflected on the blades of the grass in your backyard.
  • Random rocks.
  • Shorter walks.
  • Chicken strips your dog can’t get enough of.
  • Making a stranger laugh.
  • When the only sound is the wind.

5 Wednesday

  • When you have a good book or two waiting for you at the end of a day.
  • Stimulating conversation. Gives you something akin to a high.
  • August.
  • When your neighbor’s jackhammer stops for the day.
  • If it’s not hell yes, it’s a no.
  • People who punctuate.
  • Winning without your best stuff.
  • Anxiety out of nowhere. The chance to come back to the moment or at least the living room.

4 Tuesday

  • Winning the day by noon.
  • Grab-and-go libraries.
  • Old hardcovers.
  • Lake Nokomis.
  • A new ladder.
  • Your dog’s gut about someone (approve).
  • Black olives.

3 Monday

  • The healing power of teaching.
  • Knowing when you hit your limit.
  • Divanni‚Äôs.
  • Longfellow Gardens.
  • Reading time.
  • Driving around on a summer night.
  • The new air.

1 Saturday

  • Saturday morning walks.
  • Morning coffee.
  • The way your dog bounces back.
  • Winning without your best stuff.
  • Speaking only when you have something to say.
  • A tidy house.
  • Your gut about someone.
  • Your dog’s gut about someone (disapprove).
  • Extra rest when you need it.
  • Clean bath mats.