The Grateful Dead playing for free on Haight Street.
As promised, Mrs. Muse and I shared lunch with Linda Seccaspina at Magnolia Pub on Haight Street. She has already offered her lovely account. Due to my nature, mine is more prosaic. Ah well.
The food was great. The company was better.
I have been privileged from time to time to meet people whose work I admire. They fall into two camps. In the first are artists who are a letdown to meet. Whatever spark in their work has opened my eyes, ears or heart is nowhere in sight once I meet them. They seem cold, closed, uptight. Maybe they are just shy in public. But I wonder if it isn’t something else – that it’s only through their art that they can allow a part of themselves to flower.
In the second camp are artists whose work is a natural extension of their lives. Meeting these people I watch what was just notes, colors or words blossom into a life. It feels good.
Linda falls firmly in the second camp. We recognized her across Haight Street (her hair is very red!) standing in front of the Magnolia Pub. She smiled and we ran across the street and Linda who loves to “rate with hugs” gave us big non-virtual hugs.
Linda gets right to the point with her writing – that point being to express emotion. Not to vent, or to whine, but to make us feel what she clearly feels so strongly – joy, anger, sadness. She minces no words in nailing those who deserve to be nailed and praising where praise is deserved. And she’s funny as hell.
Behind all of those feelings she expresses her anchor feeling. LOVE.
She sat before us and I watched all those words I’d read transform into the person who radiated that love.
We had much in common – two sons, nasty exes followed by the miracle of current keepers. Less than perfect parents. Linda has been dealt a lot of junk from the bottom of the deck, dealt with her share of jokers. But she’s made a fine hand of it.
Linda told us of someone she knows who’s very religious who likes to tell Linda she’s not going to make it to heaven. Linda refers to this artfully as “going to the beach.” As far as I can tell she’s already there, as much as any of us get.
She surprised me with gifts, saying she liked the bottles. I like them too, which is why I post them here:
I’m sure they will be even more enjoyable once we uncork them.
I first came to Haight Street the summer of 1970. Mrs. Muse got there earlier, though she can’t remember the year (!) We both had the same experience – of looking on every corner for something that wasn’t there, that had gone, or never been there in the first place.
What were we seeking? Little things. Joy. Peace. Enlightenment. Above all, LOVE.
We finally found it in each other. And we found it yesterday, finally, on Haight Street.
Linda wore a great big heart:
Not as big as the one inside.