Cat Lap Blogging

Tupperware is in danger of going out of business. The company is one of many that once seemed to me to have been permanent fixtures in the commercial landscape. But that permanence was illusory. Dozens of retail establishments I once assumed would be around forever have either died or are dying. K-Mart, Fry’s Electronics, Lord & Taylor, ToysRUs, Filene’s Basement, Borders Books, Waldenbooks, Sears, Woolworth, etc., etc., etc. Like the rest of the world around me, the retail world is in a constant state of flux. The demise of the businesses often is attributed to management’s failure to be flexible; refusal to reinvent the business in response to a changing retail environment. While that may well contribute to the death of businesses, I doubt blame can be placed entirely on managerial failures. Some businesses simply may not be suited to the rapid adaptations required to remain going concerns in a business environment that changes with increasing speed and scope. The same may be true of some people. They simply may be unable to change their world views quickly enough to remain attuned to the society around them. And so they become inconsequential; their outmoded thinking sentences them to irrelevance. “Some people,” indeed. More likely, all of us. Whether physically or mentally or both, we cannot keep up with what is required to stay vibrant and necessary. In the natural order, we eventually die. That may well be true of businesses, as well. Businesses that “have always been here” fade into oblivion. No matter how many times they may reinvent themselves, there will come a time when the energy required to adapt simply is insufficient.


Obligations are anchors; they tie us to one place or one experience, unable to move. And, like anchors, obligations can pull us down, drowning us in a sea of responsibilities. That is not to say that all obligations are dangerous or deadly; but without at least occasional respite, they can tighten around us like boa constrictors, making every breath an almost overwhelming challenge. Freedom is the antidote to unchecked obligations. Freedom can be dangerous, of course, but with proper precautions and adequate understanding of its limits, freedom can loosen the chains of obligation.


I saw my doctor yesterday. He was pleasantly surprised at the dramatic change in my A1C measurement: 6.1% compared to 9.3% three months ago. And he said an occasional alcoholic drink would be perfectly safe and acceptable; very little danger of causing pancreatic problems. But he warned me that the caloric intake of more frequent imbibing could counteract the weight loss I have experienced over the past several months. I knew that, of course, so I will continue to refrain from all but the very occasional consumption of alcohol. But, if I were diagnosed with an incurable, fatal condition of some sort, I probably would swill liquor with abandon, whenever the mood struck me. I am disciplined to some extent; but, when conditions are right, I am equally capable of undisciplined debauchery.


Yesterday’s lunch at Pho Hoang My, otherwise know as the Pho House, was wonderful. But the consumption of a rather significant amount of vermicelli in my grilled pork and shrimp bun bowl had the effect of boosting this morning’s blood glucose measure, though not unhealthily so. We had errands to run in town yesterday, which coincided nicely with lunchtime.


Phaedra is in my lap again. Having interrupted my blogging several times this morning, I think she is now insisting I stop typing. I shall heed her command. For now.

About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
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