Monday, July 6, 2020

Cul-de-sac life

For almost a century, new housing developments have been designed with a minimum of through streets and a maximum of cul-de-sacs. It’s what the market wants. A little quiet corner of the world. A retreat from the grind. A bit of Heaven—if your idea of Heaven is summed up in this Talking Heads lyric:
Heaven is a place
where nothing
nothing ever happens
To me, cul-de-sacs are about reducing the size of your life by reducing your exposure to it. After all, cul-de-sac is French for dead end. Or, more literally, ass of the bag.

Even though my house was on a through street, I had unintentionally created my own ass of the bag by shrinking my life down to a world small enough to fit in my numb, barely functioning mind. My little routine, in my little world, with very little satisfaction. (I can’t get no… no no no.)

But as retirement and the end of my career loomed, I was forced to evaluate my life. Retirement meant change, right? So what did I want to change? How many things did I want to change? And change it how much?

“I… I… I don’t want to be here,” my inner soul said. “Here” being in a house, stuck in one place.

“And I want more than… than… this.” (Gesturing vaguely at myself and the pathetic energy field I emitted.) “I want to be more.”

So here I am, seven years on the road, running from the literal and metaphorical ass of the bag. My world and life are bigger, and I hope they keep growing until I reach that final dead end.


  1. Ah, Thank you! I needed that.

  2. Freedom is addictive, withdrawal is daily for me. I'm stuck in the ass of the bag because of P.C.. Full-time is healther in ALL ways, health is determinate in full-time. Run with it, alternatives suck, there are none worth considering, while living free.

  3. And cue up some Roxy Music 'More Than This'