I recall someone once drawing an analogy between writing a paper for a grade and cracking a combination lock. It's apt for so many quests: money, affection, understanding, music, health, goodwill. Perhaps happiness itself. I turn a lot of knobs. I hear a lot of clicks. Being close feels about the same as being far — qualitatively separate from being there. Winning buys a little time, and rehearses for the next gig. Among my cringe-worthy idioms is "having a life" but I guess it conjures the set of knobs I am currently working. Some pithy wisecrack belongs here to distinguish this from pathetic whining, but I'm still working that knob too. I'll let you know when something clicks.