On losing one’s ‘sounding board’ and, the voices in your head

canadian blog awards

Winner GLBT category.

Good morning,


I hope all is well,

in your spot in the universe.

I’m doing ok,

the Summer is moving along,

there have been good parts.

I have spent some quality time,

with my mom,

we’ve had a few Sunday outings,

the movies,

the museum,

a few special lunches.

The month of August will,

be busy with barbecues and such,

lots of family,

seeing the kids,

as well as catching up,

with friends,

who I haven’t seen in a while.

I’m reading more,


more thought provoking stuff,

I told you all,

about Gender Failure,


I’ve just finished,

Lettres Philosophiques by Voltaire,

a work colleague lent it to me.


I have trouble getting through,

18 th century French,


this is clean prose,

in the form of letters,


to Paris,

I guess,

Voltaire describes British society,

it’s politics,

it’s science,

it’s religious aspects,

The Quakers,

The Anglican church,




it’s modernity.

If that sounds dry and tough to read,

to you,

you would be wrong,

reads very well.

Voltaire a true representative,

of the Enlightenment,



Perfect food for thought.

My friend the anarchist,

was a lover of the 18 th century,


it isn’t really until he wrote his,

biography of Kropotkin,

that he moved towards the 19 th,

he always said the 20 th century wasn’t yet history, still current events

the roots of 19 th century,

political thought and emancipation,

lay very much in the,

18 th century,

and it’s enlightenment.

As I read these books,


reacquaint myself with,

historical and philosophical writing,

I am struck,

over and over again,

by how much I have lost,

with the loss of my anarchist.

On a very personal and emotional level,

the loss is cataclysmic,

there was much love there,



very significantly,

as an intellectual sounding board,

it helped me to know what I think,

about things,

by discussing them with him,

he would always add something,

to my thoughts,


when it turned out we were,

in complete agreement,


we often were.

So as I read,

the Voltaire,

I kept thinking,

Francoys would think,

this is bunk,

or Francoys would say,


it isn’t near as satisfying as telling him,

about my reading,

and him telling me about his,


just as he lives in my heart,

he also lives in my head.

That sounds slightly,



I get that,


as I get older,

I realize that many ‘people’

live on,

in my head,

in my heart,


that coupled with my own,

little voices,

much discourse and discussion goes on,

in my cranium.

My grandparents are there,

my father,

my friend Betsy,



they are joined by,


I have many friends,

with whom,

I can discuss ideas,



live and share,

some have known me for a long time,


know me quite well,

love me and are loved back,

there is still discussion,


laughter in my life,

passion for growth, knowledge and discovery,


my sounding board is,

no more.

Until you lose someone,

who holds such stature,

in your life,

you cannot know,

the extent to which your life,

will change.

This does not mean you don’t,

love and appreciate the people in your life,

it means you cannot ‘know’

It has been a theory of mine,

for many moons,

probably stole it somewhere,

you must have friends who are,

smarter than you,

or bring something very different,

to the table,

you can never be,

the smartest or most charismatic,

because if you are,

you grow in no way,


in complacency,



You also need those piss you off,

kind of people,

they also,


accidentally or inadvertently,

hone your thinking skills.

I am blessed in all those categories,

smart and loving friends,

old and new,

very much alive in the material world,


also in my head and heart.

As a follow up to Voltaire,

I am reading,

on my e-reader,

the Essays Of Montaigne,

it is a very long read,

1400 pages,

3 volumes,


although Francoys made a face,

when I mentioned in December,

that I had gotten them off the,

Gutenberg Project,


Montaigne could be long and boring.

I don’t doubt,

he is right about that,

in more than a few ways,


the fact that Montaigne,

chose to live and think about,

what he really thought,

about life and all that it comprises,

in seclusion,

appeals to me,



he wrote what is the truest thing,

I have ever read about friendship,


what it means,

a mystery on a par,

with attraction and love.

If you press me to say why I loved him, I can say no more than because he was he, and I was I.” 
― Michel de MontaigneThe Complete Essays

Be well.

Later girls,



By Bookish Butch

I am a bookish butch in my mid early fifties. I live in Montréal and always have. I used to run a small used bookstore. Reading keeps me sane. My latest jiggie is photography, book project in the works, living the dream

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