Pandora: For a Friend

I wrote this for a friend who keeps stopping short of exploring her creativity, because she fears the joy will be short-lived; cut down by the mundane process of selling, lack of appreciation, inability to find those who will share her interests, or a simple lack of time. At the core, she feels it is safer to stay unfulfilled, than to experience joy that might be lost and never regained—and that is a fear that we have all experienced at one time or another. She likened it to the fear of opening Pandora's Box.

You hesitate to open the jar, because you fear that the pleasure will be fleeting, that it will not lead to new discoveries and new pleasures. But Pandora's jar did not hold all evil, and not all that was good, escaped.

"Only Hope remained there in an unbreakable home within under the rim of the great jar, and did not fly out at the door; for ere that, the lid of the jar stopped her, by the will of Aegis-holding Zeus who gathers the clouds." (Hesiod, Works and Days)

Hope is what keeps me going through everything else in my life, it always has. And I know that if I don't open the jar, there will be no Hope.


For most of my life I have believed that Love was the most powerful emotion, and Orgasm the most intense pleasure. I no longer believe either of those things.

Over the past nine months (the rebirth metaphor does not escape me), I have discovered feelings and sensations that I had no idea even existed. My entire concept of what my mind and body are capable of has been turned upside down. Somewhere inside of me, something must have known, because I have always longed for certain situations. I wondered what it would be like to be the Dominant one, to have a strong submissive, someone whose life during the day was stressful and demanding. She was smart, she was successful, but when she came  home she wanted to let it all go and let someone else take control. I knew a little about that release, I had played a bit many years ago. I knew the relaxation that could come with submission, and as I fantasized, I felt a tingle of the thrill that might come with being the Dominant. Somewhere, my subconscious  knew what it was capable of.

Lucky Man

Greg Lake - Lucky Man

Talking Heads - Once in a Lifetime

If there's one thing my roadtrip has done, it's remind me of how lucky I am. It's not a time of my life when I feel particularly lucky, but I when I stop and think about it rationally, I've had a very fortunate life. I was at the right place at the right time at several key moments in my life, which led to a career which I have loved. I found a partner who, while we ran into a lot of (eventually terminal) issues between us, was in many ways the perfect yin to my yang. The result was a great home, and joint parenting which produced two bright, creative (and even fairly organized :-) kids whom I'm immensely proud of. We created something better than ourselves.

When I get depressed about where things are now, I try to remember that many of my friends never had those chances, or only got there after a great deal of pain and hard work. When I look at the house, and all the things we did together, I remind myself that while the future we tried to build is lost, I learned a great deal and became a much better person as a result of the experience, and most of all; the kids got to enjoy the results of our endeavors. It doesn't take away the pain, but it makes it more worthwhile.