Reinvention

Once I reinvent myself I’m going to be better than all of y’all.

There are always things I want to do, like read more books, write a novel, learn Spanish, eat better, exercise, lose weight.

I’d like to be skinny. I think I’d feel better, physically. And look better. 

Still, I’m not talking about defining reinvention by some measurement of goal completion. I’m talking whether I can become a different person. Someone who doesn’t care what people think, has courage, and confidence. Can a person change what they believe?

For example, I can’t choose to believe something that just didn’t make sense to me, like that stuff about Jesus. 

But can you be young again when you are old? Can you effectively travel through time and reinvent, not just who you are, but who you were? Can you create this fiction about your past, if you want to?

What if you can turn yourself from a person who failed a lot to someone who always succeeds, from one who regrets to someone who has always been grateful for the  miraculous good fortune, that has always befallen him.  Maybe it isn’t fiction.What if yo remembering more of your successes than your (supposed) failures. We all have them. Can the narrative you tell about yourself redefine you in the present?

And even if it were fiction, even if I made up the fact that I had a wonderful life and it wasn’t even true, does that matter? Does it matter if it helps to reinvent who I am today?

I had a friend in 1984 named Larry Wachowski. He was a fanatic Cubs fan. He won a bet I made with him at the beginning of the season that the Mets, who had the year before finished poorly, I don’t remember where the Cubs had finished in 1983, would finish better than the Cubs. The Cubs ended up in first, and the Mets in second. When the Cubs clinched the division, even though it was at that point, already, a foregone conclusion, he came to my dorm room with a bottle of Jack Daniels, our drink – in that he had introduced it to me – to celebrate.  I said, “oh, you fucking asshole,” and then we drank it.

I liked who I was then, in that moment, even though my team had lost. And then I rooted for the cubs in the Series.

That’s a moment I can be proud of. Just being who I was then was a success. When the cubs lost, Larry put his hand through a window pane.

He reinvented himself. I only know this because he’s kind of famous, not because I’ve kept in touch.  He reinvented himself and he’s a girl now.  Maybe he would say he was always a girl. Semantics. I thought about him just this week because the Cubs have finally won a World Series. And I wonder if she, is as happy about it as he would have been. Would she have put her hand through a window pane if they had lost, again? I hope so. Because you gotta like a girl like that.