I like to think of my own life in this way. I am living a kind of Steve Winwood “high” life without the big money, or life as defined by a series of highs rather than one of “stability” in the old-fashioned, white-picket-sense of that term (which my parents invested in). I live in order to feel high and spread highs of a certain kind.

Another way to put it is that I live in order to celebrate dream states that have obviously been made, at root, to fuel the fires of commerce, which is where the vaguely dirty aspect comes in. Except I love revenue. Who doesn’t?

There’s also the “constant fighting with people who disagree and are looking to spread poison by tearing you down any which way” aspect, but that will never go away.

All I know is that writing this column sure beats working. Which is what Robert Mitchum often said about acting. And yet I’m a 15-hour-per-day slave to it.

Many of us are in love with the idea of living the life of a literary Dean Martin but without the drinking and the cigarettes and the endless cynicism. Okay, some of us are. What do I actually mean by “literary Dean Martin”? I don’t know but give me a minute or two and I’ll figure something out. Don’t be afraid to start a sentence just because you’re not sure how to finish it. It’ll come to you. I learned that a long time ago from Patti Smith.