It’s a beautiful day in SF, and I’m getting the chance to bike around the city again. I really just love this city for the simple things. For the blue skies and the cool breeze and the warm sun. For the red bridge and the evergreen grasses and the turquoise water. For those flaky croissants and also floofy dogs and the pockets of optimistic souls.
It’s so beautiful and perfect that it feels like I want to share it with someone. It’s a quiet Friday morning: Golden Gate Park is devoid of the usual throngs of bikers and runners and rollers and everything in between. It’s a lightness that doesn’t come often: a feeling that anything is possible and that things are good.
I started thinking about how you could represent the inner state of your mind using weather: how a clear sunny day can turn into the lightness you carry into every piece of your life and how a vengeful storm can translate into a cool rage boiling underneath the surface of every conversation. How easy and privileged it is to have that lightness—it makes everything easier, funner, brighter.
I thought of the difference between those that have to fight at every turn for survival, both physically and emotionally, and those that have the backstage all taken care of for them to focus on whatever is in front of them. These backstage errands are also simple things, like not having to worry about getting the proper diet, worry about being stereotyped, or have peace of mind walking down a street at night.
The simple things are simple because they’re easy to understand and imagine. They’re the things that you expect to be “normal.” Yet, the simple things are often the ones that are the hardest to find or recreate if they’re not present. When something is absent, it feels helpless because there’s no recipe for something so obvious. Duh, a clear sky is refreshing. Yes of course safety while walking is convenient. We take the simple things for granted when we have them because they fit so naturally into living. And when they’re gone, we have to make big adjustments to our “default” behavior to compensate. We have to learn that the world isn’t quite as simple as the simple things that we love and crave.
This is the 65th installment in my experiment of publishing raw, lightly edited mini-essays every day towards achieving 100 public pieces. Check out the rationale and the full list here.