Different Slants

Seeing the World from a New Angle

Relationships Defined: A Reflection Closer to Reality…by Robert M. Katzman

Relationships Defined: A Reflection Closer to Reality

by Robert M. Katzman © New Year’s Eve, 2017

1) Friend: One of one, or one of many, a preferred person to call, go places with, share experiences, be with when sad or drunk, to defend or be defended by when threatened by words or worse and who when you ask for help, absolutely, positively, shows up.

2) Best Friend: All of the above, never more than one or two people if a person is not deluded about what the words actually mean, who you tell your darkest secrets to, and who when you need to be told what a jerk you are, or how to rescue some hopeless situation, career mistake or if he, or she, is the One, you listen.

3) Girl or Boy Friend: Same, meaning again, all of (2), except the one who is on the same wave length as you are about sex, passion, politics, anger and thinking about your futures together, maybe. Someone who you can travel with for more than three days and despite all the grief that can bring down upon both of you when scheduled plans and connections don’t work as they should have, you still don’t hate them. Think about it.

4) Married: Take (3), add pressure, children, failure, no time anymore for anyone but (2) and not to ever speak of (3) in any way at any time in the sense of comparisons in beauty, success or more deadly aspects of intimacy, mix in a mysteriously biologically intense attraction that makes all the restrictions and disappointments bearable because you still have each other, and will quietly accept each other’s old # (2)’s but rigidly never bringing up their, somehow to anyone else in the world, obvious flaws. Time is indifferently erasing, beauty, ambition, burning sex drives, accepting good smart children but who will never be the President, and realizing that at a certain point, which arrives at the speed of a comet, that they are the oldest people at all the family parties.

Their children are balding or wrinkly, their grandchildren are in high school and in another universe technologically and nothing you overhear them saying makes any sense to you. You cling together at family reunions because you two are the only ones who remember well all the people who used to be in the room at parties like the one you are at, but realize that you were too busy to talk to those remote people because they were so old. And boring. But now you know what treasures they took with them when they died, and most unexpectedly that you two have become them. You have learned to stop comparing current world or political events to the major ones of your own lives, because all that greets you are blank faces from your younger family because no one remembers or cares about what was once so important to you.

In the best of marriages, the once crowded spaceship of all you once knew that was traveling through time with you has shrunk to an increasingly rickety, increasingly emptying of other passengers, and the level of fuel left in your older model spaceship is dropping swiftly and not all of the gauges work properly anymore. The once steel-like belief that as a couple, you were “both in this forever” begins to crumble when you realize that was never true, but now more than ever, there will, one unknown day, be a sole survivor hurtling through time, alone.

5) Finding Love Again: A necessary decision to believe there must be God who determines such remote possibilities actually exist, because all of the above (1) through (4) have already happened, won’t ever be able to happen again because old experiences with an earlier love can’t be recreated, only remembered. Worse, the single person who speaks endlessly of them creates an impenetrable barrier blocking any hope of emotional intimacy with anyone else who in many ways is your twin, except the museum of your own stunning past that you have built and barricaded guarantees that you will always be the only visitor to that fading museum.

The lucky few who may successfully comprehend that “Less Is More”, meaning that less time moving backwards means more time with someone new moving forward, and that love is very different after sixty, but that having someone to call, be with, to do things with and holding each other’s hands while slowly walking through a park in autumn, looking deeply into each other’s eyes with a very different sense of what is important means a kiss between two once solitary grandparents can be incredibly cool. And hot.

Happy New Year from a 67-year-old person who is currently floating somewhere in the Universe between (4) and (5) and who believes there still may be time for the possibility of a second true love.

Yes. I believe.


Publishing News! 

Bob Katzman’s two new true Chicago books are now for sale, from him!
Vol. One: A Savage Heart and Vol. Two: Fighting Words

Gritty, violent, friendship, classic American entrepreneurship love, death, heartbreak and the real dirt about surviving in a completely corrupt major city under the Chicago Machine. More history and about one mans lif’e than a person may imagine.

Please visit my new website: https://www.dontgoquietlypress.com
If a person doesn’t want to use PayPaI, I also have a PO Box & I ship anywhere in America.

Send me a money order with your return and contact info.
I will get your books to you within ten days.
Here’s complete information on how to buy my books:

Vol 1: A Savage Heart and Vol. 2: Fighting Words
My books weigh almost 2 pounds each, with about 525 pages each and there are a total together of 79 stories and story/poems.

Robert M. Katzman
Don’t Go Quietly Press
PO Box 44287
Racine, Wis. 53404-9998  (262)752-3333, 8AM–7PM

Books cost $29.95 each, plus shipping

For: (1)$3.95; (2)$5.95; (3)$7.95; (4)$8.95 (5)$9.95;(6) $10.95

(7) $11.95; (8) $12.95; (9)$13.95 (10)$15.95 (15)$19.95

I am also for hire if anyone wants me to read my work and answer questions in the Chicago/Milwaukee area. Schools should call me for quantity discounts for 30 or more books. Also: businesses, bookstores, private organizations or churches and so on.

My Fighting Words Publishing Co. four original books, published between 2004 and 2007 are now out-of-print. I still have some left and will periodically offer them for sale on my new website.


Comment by Charlie Newman

December 30, 2017 @ 1:50 pm

nicely said…have a great ’18, Bob!

Comment by Don Larson

December 30, 2017 @ 3:47 pm

Nice thoughts for a lifetime of year!

Happy New Year, Bob!


Comment by Brad Dechter

January 2, 2018 @ 8:03 am

I’m no philosopher, so please do not consider me anyone other than a caring friend.
Finding love again is a nice thought. Finding inner peace is a virtue. I’ve been told that love comes at the most inexplicable of times and when least expected.
Searching for it?
Just float in that space you’re in and let it find you when it’s ready to.
As I said, my thoughts only and I’m no expert.

Comment by Veenk

January 2, 2018 @ 8:43 am

Masterfully expressed, Bob, as usual. Always enjoy catching up with your thoughts and life. Friends since 1974!

Comment by Beth

November 23, 2020 @ 11:21 am

I am enjoying reading these poems and notions from your heart Bob. And I am happy to hear the universe is bestowing gifts of love and acceptance towards you. Seeing you happy brings a smile to my own heart.

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