Riding Metro North S. With the Glow.


Mon 6:10 am start. Home at 8:10 pm.

Tues 5:31 am start. Home at 9:12 pm.

Wed 4:43 am start. Home at 9:36 pm.

Thur 4:30 am start. Home at 9:45 pm.

See any patterns here? Any obvious trend lines?

I lean my head against the window in the train car. Eye lids heavy, flap shut. Mind rotates snapshots of Freddie in Bohemian Rhapsody.

Mary: “Freddie you’re burning the candle at both ends.”

Freddie: “Yes, but the glow is so divine.”

No throngs of adoring fans.
No booze.
No sex. (Sigh)
No drugs.

And doubt. That ever-present black mist drips, and drips.

And the glow.

Oh, the glow.


  • Mary / Freddie quote from: Freddie Mercury (Rami Malek), Bohemian Rhapsody (2018 film)
  • Inspired by: “I don’t know what breeds obsession. I don’t know if it is hardwired into the body or if it assumes its role after the long habituation of practice. I don’t know if what we do becomes what we do or if it too just is. ~ Devin Kelly (LitHub, June 2017)
  • Photo: Newthom


  1. There we go AGAIN…. your working schedule drives me crazy! Just reading it exhausts me! OK, I’m a bit (much) older than you but buddy, you gotta think of your health, your family, your bleeding LIFE! You can’t abuse your body in that way…. I don’t say make your body a temple, by far not, but be a bit kind(er) to it! For your wife, family, us….. Please!

    Do I just hear a mother talk to her child? Blimey, I’m not THAT much older than you 😉

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Is this REAL TIME? Are you trying to tell me that you’re blogging at 3.51 AM????

    Liked by 2 people

    • WE ARE LIVE!

      Liked by 2 people

      • …. but hardly ALIVE?! How the Dickens…..??? It’s nearly 10am here and that’s alright, but even though we’re both insomniacs, this is wahaaaayyyy too much! Go back to sleep, sweetheart!

        Liked by 3 people

        • In 10 mins, I will try. Yes, I will!

          Liked by 2 people

          • hopeless…. gotta laugh! or cry!

            Liked by 1 person

          • It is HOPELESS! and you gotta laugh!

            Liked by 1 person

          • These days, I’m less inclined to rejoice in the way my head is lit up at night, like an out-of-hours factory, when the whirring generators flip on, powering up the lights and the processing plants for a frenetic shift. Geared up this way, my mind trips ceaselessly from one mundane thought to the next, alighting upon a single word or meaningless riff or song snippet I happened to hear that day. Or it runs backward and forward over endless lists, stitching and unstitching. I compose strings of emails that could wait until morning, line up tasks in a shoulder-shoving queue. Mostly I just fret, worry-beading minor problems and irritations until they form a manacle of woe.

            ~ Marina Benjamin, The Genius of Insomnia (The New York Times · January 5, 2019)

            Liked by 4 people

          • oh but THAT…. can’t get any of those fab articles any more so have to rely on trusted friend David!
            Reminded me of Hero Husband over breakfast. He had to check a German word on his phone (as a French spoken Swiss working in an international firm with literally nobody speaking real proper German he’s often at a loss of words) and then was totally absorbed with business mails….. Told him to pack up his phone and go to the office to sort things out instead of infuriating his dear, long-suffering wife who made him lovingly his breakfast….. and off he took…..
            btw, the word he ‘learned’ was Legastheniker (= dyslexic), and I explained to him that I could never fathom the creation of such an excessively difficult word for someone with a problem of writing correctly….. 😉 🙂 😉 🙂
            We ALL have our crosses to bear!!!!

            Liked by 2 people

          • Smiling. So good.

            Liked by 1 person

  3. Besides the fact I am reading you at 3:58 (Thank you, Zeke; thank you Morpheus, for abandoning me. Again.) , I am thinking your pattern is backwards. The earlier you are up and at ’em, the later you get home? No bueno, amigo. That glow will get less and less divine and we sure as hell don’t want your light to dim… xoxo

    Liked by 4 people

  4. I don’t know what to do with you this morning! I don’t. I read this and I keep repeating something over and over in my mother tongue that is untranslatable!

    Liked by 4 people

  5. niasunset says:

    Oh my Godness… your working hours… going earlier every time… seems better to stay in NY… Dear David, amazing post, especially mentioned glow, Bohemian Rhapsody… Thank you, have a nice and happy weekened, Love, nia

    Liked by 1 person

  6. niasunset says:

    Goodness… ah my language, isn’t it the best?

    Liked by 1 person

  7. find your glow closer to home and heart.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. As Joe Walsh wrote in “Falling Down” …burning the candle at both ends. Twice the light in half the time”. And, I sigh with you, pal. 😔

    Liked by 1 person

  9. There’s another way, DK, just HAS to be. I’m sure you’ve heard of Icarus. Fly too close to that ‘glow’ and the outcome isn’t good. Life is too short….

    Liked by 5 people

  10. Ah, these hours I know so well (and arguably why I still don’t sleep a full night). The muscle memory that never atrophies. I remember the silver-backed-gorilla-beat-my-chest toughness of playing hurt, being one of the road and work warriors – the glow that comes from midnight oil burning. But one day my friend, this will give you pause…and as much as it reinforces, it also takes away – and it is that which you will want returned to you. Find the balance Grasshopper – you deserve it.

    Liked by 3 people

  11. Anonymous says:

    Confession is good for the soul, my son, but aren’t you tired of the Mothers slapping you upside the head here? Surely, you’ve reached a position of Delegation, so this is a choice.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. It looks like you are back on the first train of the morning – that’s the David I know. You must have promises to keep, and miles to go before you sleep…

    Liked by 1 person

  13. There are fine lines between hard work and obsession, seeing the glow and recognizing the fire. Sounds like you know you have crossed them. Take it easy Dave.

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Or is your intention to make us slackers feel guilty? 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Been there, done that, and have the t-shirt as well, Dave. Except the t-shirt wasn’t worth it in the end. Find your glow … find your balance … recognizing the difference between the glow and the fire … all sage pieces of advice from people who obviously care and are concerned. It does sound like you have things backwards, and you need to refine your personal to do list to put you and your health first, because without your health you will have nothing.

    “We need to do a better job of putting ourselves higher on our own ‘to do’ list.”
    ~ Michelle Obama

    Liked by 1 person

  16. I worked a lot of hours back when I was a chef. I loved every minute of it. I thought I was making a big splash.
    And I wouldn’t have given you a nickel for a guy that does a job like the one I do now.
    Now? I get to go home at 4:30. The big splash, its over-rated. But it was fun while it lasted.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Call me a bit anachronistic…money is a necessity though don’t let it be a stranglehold over you Health, Family and Peace of Mind…

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Up dressed work, home bed sleep, repeat daily

    Liked by 1 person

  19. I bet you are counting the weeks until that plane lands in Miami for the annual family trip…

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Lovely bit of writing. What is that glow, for you? Recognition? Satisfaction in providing? Other? 💕

    Liked by 1 person

    • “But if silence is so peaceful, I wondered, why do many of us choose to live in busy, noisy cities? Ours is a poetic dilemma: We want silence, but we also want to blot it out. We confuse silence for peace — then go a little crazy when we have it. After all, silence allows troubling realities: what Philip Larkin called, in “Aubade,” his brilliant 1977 poem about predawn silence, the “arid interrogation” with ourselves over “the dread of dying.” The truest kind of silence is the ultimate one. Is that why we choose to live in noise, through centuries of complaining about it? Adrift in it, we can duck confrontation with the metaphysical and the existential: the piercing, enduring regret at how you treated an old, estranged friend; the inequities evident on every corner of the city; the fear that your life has been a project of self-delusion — that its elaborate armature, its gilded hand-stitched brocade, may in fact be moth-eaten…

      To hear ourselves, we sometimes have to flee ourselves, diving into silence until we’re uncomfortably alone with the noise within.

      ~ Meghan O’Rourke, from “Lessons in Stillness From One of the Quietest Places on Earth”, The New York Times (November 8, 2017)

      Liked by 1 person

    • And, thank you Bela.

      Liked by 1 person

  21. I read this and think…is this what your job demands? Your clients? Your boss? I know it’s a high stress world but (and I am not trying to be rude) I would never, for any money, live the life you are living.

    I don’t have children — or the need to support any. My parents are fine on their own. My only financial responsibility is to myself and my husband and, at 61, we met with a financial planner who thinks we are in pretty decent shape. I know, for sure, we have never earned what someone in your world makes, but I could not tolerate so little life of my own. I’ve chosen to live on less and in a 1 bdrm apt for decades and drive a 20 yr old vehicle — precisely to avoid this kind of pressure.

    Is it worth it?

    Liked by 1 person

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