Playing Pinball

Topic? I have been waiting for inspiration to strike. I got nothing, and that may be something! Confused, and waiting for clarity, is my usual state of mind; all the while life is happening and manipulating me. It feels like pinball (remember? ), balls flipped this way and that, falling in holes and popping back out. I can hear the bell ringing, signaling that I scored, and feel the disappointment when the ball quietly rolled out of play. I was not a “pinball wizard”….. But I could concentrate, and learned how and when to press the button that moved the bumpers and flippers. I felt excited when I pulled the lever to shoot the ball into play. I was sure that this time I could wrack up a big score. This time would be different.

The lyrics to “Pinball Wizard” written by Pete Townsend describe him as a ” a deaf, dumb and blind kid” who plays by “intuition” and “sense of smell”:

He stands like a statue
Becomes part of the machine
Feeling all the bumpers
Always playing clean
He plays by intuition
The digit counters fall
That deaf dumb and blind kid
Sure plays a mean pinball!

When I played well I took all the credit, and when I didn’t, the machine was bad, the sun was in my eyes, or God was not on my side. The poor decisions I made that caused the machine to “tilt” were not my fault. I had all my senses, but no intuition like the pinball wizard. I was not inside my life and felt numb. When I shot the balls into play, I did not have a plan except to do the opposite of what I learned as a child. How could I keep the ball in play when I was full of fear and my brain to heart coordination was way off?

I’d like to think that today, I own my life, mistakes and all. Sometimes no matter what I do, a ball rolls slowly and quietly out of play. Roger is no longer in the game and even the “Pinball Wizard” can’t change that. I play with less desperation and entitlement, and more for the simple joy of playing. It’s been a long game and much more to come. When I pull the lever to put the ball into play I accept that luck is a part of the game, but practice is most of it. People say Danita “Sure plays a mean pinball!”

4 thoughts on “Playing Pinball”

  1. You do play a mean pinball sister! You have rolled with life’s twists and turns. I love the line: “I play with less desperation and entitlement, and more for the simple joy of playing.” Thanks!


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