I Miss Jerry

A few months ago on a melancholic evening, I typed “I miss Jerry” into Google and came upon this post on a blog called Viki Babbles. It captured much of the sentiment I was feeling at the moment when I did the search. In the current episode of the lifework crisis that never ends, I’m finding I miss Jerry more and more. The Grateful Dead amplified the centripetal forces of my life; not having found a replacement, my sense of struggle to stay centered is more acute than it was pre-1995.

My values have not changed since I can remember having any, perhaps age seven or eight. The way I have expected to manifest those values shifts over time — I suspect it continue to do so as long as I’m alive. It was in that great Rorschach test I took with the Dead that I came to solid understanding of what they are.

Herewith, the values of my life and work — so plentiful in the community that Jerry’s self-expression spawned:

Adventure — I feel most alive in the midst of journeys whose ultimate outcome is a mystery. 

Learning — As long as I live I hope to continually encounter new people, experiences, and ideas that change my understanding of life.

Fellowship — I crave contact with other human beings where intimacy is possible and defined roles are secondary or absent.

Beauty. Beauty ain’t always pretty. The word can take adjectives like “terrible” and “fierce,” too.  Grateful Dead tour was often that. I think Robert Hunter said it best when he remarked that during the best shows, “blood drips from the ceiling.”

Movement — I want to keep travelling from place to place and enjoy freedom of my body to relax and flow.

Happy Birthday, Jerry — wherever you are!


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