This weekend is a Brian/Kayla Weekend. Brian/Kayla weekend is a phrase coined by Kayla for the weekends we spent when Tywana and Shayna were on the road leaving us to fend for ourselves for the weekend. Now, it’s a weekend when Tywana is out. I so miss the four of us. Kayla is home for about four weeks (probably less- it depends on her work situation) before she goes back to Toledo for her fourth year. I love the time when the three of us are together. But, it will never be the same without Shayna being our fourth musketeer, our D’artagnan. People always refer to the three musketeers. What many people don’t know is there is a fourth musketeer. Life without Shayna is like pizza without pepperoni. It’s good. You can eat it. But, it’s not great. Pizza needs pepperoni.
Kayla and I both love Brian/Kayla weekends though. Shayna and Tywana brought a certain level of energy to the house. They kept things exciting. But, their eccentricities could be annoying to Kayla and to me. On Brian/Kayla weekend the vibe is more chill. When deciding what to eat, or where to eat, or what movie to watch, with Tywana and Shayna it was always a chore because between the two of them, one or both would veto every choice. Kayla and I can decide on a movie or what’s for dinner in about 30 seconds and we’re both satisfied with the choice. Kayla tells me she has plans with her friends for Friday night. I’m disappointed, but I understand. I’ll just watch movies by myself. Then, her plans fall through. Secretly, I cheer. Saturday, I’ve been invited to two wedding celebrations. One for a dear friend I have met online, but it’s an hour and a half away and this might be my last weekend with Kayla for a while. Sorry. I really wanted to go. The other is my next door neighbors who recently moved in. They’re having a party in their back yard. But, I’m an introvert. The option there is an evening of quiet conversation one-on-one with Kayla watching movies or making small talk with 100 people I’ve never met. Uh… this is not a difficult choice.
We both love classic movies and don’t mind watching them over again. Tywana has an aversion to watching a movie more than once, even if it’s been a decade since she’s seen it and she doesn’t remember the plot. So, it’s not easy for me to introduce Kayla to my favorites when Tywana is here. Shayna didn’t really like anything “old” which means pre-2005 or so. Kayla and I have a list of movies we want to watch together. Tonight I’m going to introduce her to Monty Python and the Holy Grail since she loves Life of Brian so much. I grab some sushi for us at Jungle Jim’s. After sushi, we spend an hour or so sitting on the deck on a perfect late July evening having a good heart-to-heart. Then, we watch the movie together. After it’s over, we decide to try a movie on Netflix. We also like to just pick a random movie on Netflix and give it a whirl. We found Kidnap Solutions this week doing this, a dark comedy with both really liked and that led to some great conversation. We choose “Would You Rather”, a kind of knock off of Saw, which turns out to be not so great. But, again, we have great conversation around it. Even bad movies can lead to good conversation.
On Saturday, I get up and do my usual thing- a several mile walk and a trip to Costco. Then I see Kayla after she rises. We each do chores for a good part of the day. Then, we’re back together to watch some movies. I’ve been telling her about Rain Man for years. Tonight is the night we finally fit it into the schedule. Would You Rather has reminded me of The Game, the 1997 thriller with Michael Douglas. In The Game, a wealthy, bored businessman who is going through life on auto-pilot receives a gift of The Game from his brother. The thing about The Game is no one will tell him what the game is. He is instructed to not ask about the objective of The Game because the objective of The Game is to find the objective of The Game. He undergoes a series of psychological and physiological tests so the creators of The Game can tailor it to suit his particular needs. When The Game begins, he has absolutely no idea what is real and what is part of The Game. It’s a totally immersive experience woven into his real life. The Game quickly turns to mortal peril. It turns out the game is a big con and they are out to steal his wealth and possibly kill him. He doesn’t know who he can trust. He finds himself isolated and desperate, all he wants is for The Game to be over. Finally, when he can’t take anymore, someone tells him this has all been a game. He’s never been in mortal danger. Every step along the way, safety measures were in place behind the scenes, safety measures he was not aware of. But, is that true? That’s not the end, but I no more spoilers here.
The Game has been a theme that keeps coming up for me. Just this weekend, i was listening to a CD that I meditate to and several songs make reference to “who we really are”. The analogy used in one of the songs is we are actors in a play. Last night on my Afterlife Topics board, one guy talks about an alternate theory to full blown reincarnation. It’s a simulator theory. The idea is that instead of us going back into a body, starting as a baby, forgetting totally who we are, we can experience totally immersive experiences, choosing a time period and going in as an adult, getting the lesson and no mucking about with all the hassles of 70 or 80 years in these meat suits. He compares this life to the Hard Level and this alternative quick in and out to the Medium Level. No more Hard Level for me. I’m loving this alternative. He tells me that he thinks that now that he’s discovered this in this life, he can get out of the reincarnation thing. Sounds good to me.
What I keep telling myself is that is what I this “reality” is. I’m in The Game. The Game is rigged. It’s planned to look like total chaos, full of danger. It doesn’t feel like I can trust in The Game. But, ultimately, everything will be OK. No. Everything is OK. Those who seem to have “died” have just completed their roles in The Game. Like actors who have walked off the set, they stand in the wings as we continue the performance. And, when the performance is over, we’re going to have a helluva after party.
Sunday morning rolls around. Kayla mentioned pancakes on Saturday and Rain Main famously has pancakes (with maple syrup that must be on the table before the pancakes are served) in the movie. Two pancake references. Message received. I make pancakes for Kayla for breakfast. God only knows what time she’ll be up to eat them, but I make them and keep them warm for that eventuality. Tywana phones and says she’s heading back from Nashville. As she’s heading up I-75 towards home, Kayla will be heading up I-75 from here to Toledo for her job interview tomorrow. I’m here for an hour or so in between with one coming and one going. I miss the days when we were all together, not all coming and going. But, this too is part of The Game I have chosen to play. I sit on the deck and read for a while. I’m reading Conversations with God, Book Three. It’s been many years since i have read the first two. And, as I begin to read it’s about how time and space are an illusion that we choose to enter into in these bodies. It’s not that time and space are really different when we transition back to our natural state, it’s a matter of perspective. When we are in the body, we are in the close up, micro perspective, looking at things in a way that makes them appear separate and to occur in sequence, when in reality, when we pull back and look at the macro picture, all is happening at once. It’s an Eternal Now and we are never truly separate, but part of a big whole. I guess the theme for the weekend is complete. I hear Tywana’s car coming up the street out front and Stevie starts to bark as she opens the door, back from her trip.