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Lions Roar : January 2012
SHAMBHALA SUN JANUARY 2012 90 note about how the TV show they were making out of his book, The Guinea Pig Diaries, didn’t get picked up by NBC. I looked over my initial comment (“They’re all pissants!”) and revised it to: “The writer crowd is damn proud of you, young man. It’s an amazing accomplish- ment for your project to have been taken this far, and will definitely lead to even better things: I heard they’re auditioning Mel Gibson for your book The Year of Liv- ing Biblically! Anyway, way to go, pal.” I then logged on to Tweetville to post a quote from legendary coach Knute Rockne: “One man practicing sportsman- ship is far better than a hundred teaching it.” My modus was simple enough: com- ment if necessary, be nice, have some fun, then get the hell offline. I picked up my son for brunch, and he handed me a Tupperware full of cook- ies from my ex. Dozens of thoughts ran through my head: Were they poisoned? Was this supposed to make up for her abandoning our marriage? Did she give the other half of the batch to the man she betrayed me with? I took a breath and thought about my month, and all that I’d learned. What—if anything—did I really have to say about the matter? (Pause. Pon- der.) “Thank Mom for the cookies, will you? It was a thoughtful thing to do.” What started almost as a lark wound up a grand blessing, and is now a power- ful piece of my everyday existence. I look down at the banded blue agate where my wedding ring used to be, and instead of cursing the stars, appreciate the moment, for I am not dead or in pain, but far from it. My life is rich and full. I am surrounded by loved ones and my learning curve is inching toward equanimity. As I packed up my notes at the mon- astery and began to leave my final inter- view, Tulku said something that put my experiment in perspective. “Perhaps you will come meet with me again soon, and we shall have tea and continue to discuss this honorable notion of right speech,” my Tibetan friend offered, countering my idea of deadlines and firm endings and meetings wrapped up in tidy bows. “Or we will sit together (pause) in silence.” ♦