We used to do crazy things out on the porch when I was 9. We lived on the 9th floor. Before that, it was the 19th, although we didn't have a porch then. A terrace: fancy. It was like our back yard. Did anyone ever tell us to be careful? These were different times. I only ever saw up and out, far and wide. Yes, we threw things off: doll heads and hands, jacks, super balls, coins, apple cores, basically anything smaller than our hands, and then we hung over the rail, exploding with a cheer when something landed miraculously (i.e. not on a person's head). We'd play Crazy 8s, War and Bloody Knuckles, and when I shuffled the cards I held them over the side and never lost a single one. Yeah, I was that good.
I think about this when, every once in a while, bad things happen. How even though I know it could be worse than simply having to absorb a blow and keep on keeping on, I have waves of self loathing, of shame and disappointment. I know it doesn't do any good to go too far down that road and I try not to. I think instead about how badly I used to want to put a swing on our porch, hang it off the edge, climb up there and swing high, always looking up and out, far and wide.
Click here, baby.