Monday Thinkers

Just a few things for your Monday morning.

Every time I watch a weather forecast on television, here is what I think of: The “meteorologist” is in a locked, candle lit back room of the studio. She wears a long black robe emblazoned with golden stars and moons. Donning a matching, pointy black cap she sits at a small table covered with a deep blue silk cloth with gold fringe. Drinking the last of her tea, she studies the dregs. Flinging aside the tea cup she pulls out a deck of cards, shuffles and lays them out, consulting the Tarot. On the table, fresh chicken blood, pooled in an upturned human skull waits to be drizzled into a bowl. Now she tosses in some old bones, rolls it around the base of the bowl while murmuring incantations under her breath. And finally, the Crystal Ball. Clouds of mist roil around inside the ball as she waves her hands in the air. More incantations, louder now until her voice is crackly and pleading. Suddenly the ball clears, she studies what she sees, a high pitched cackle escapes the room as a knock comes on the door. Haphazardly discarding the robe and cap, she grabs the weather screen remote and before letting herself out of the room she consults the Magic 8 ball. And in, 3…2…1… “Good evening, here is your weather forecast for today….”

When I hear the word, “scholar,” I imagine men in long robes and mortar board hats with gold fringes swaying, as they walk hallowed halls of wisdom, with their degrees on sheepskin carried in their hands, they discuss lofty ideas about how to find a job.

“Scientist,” inevitably reminds me of Mel Brooks’ Young Frankenstein. A black and white image of a madman with wild hair pulling levers and throwing switches releasing lightening bolts of electricity from odd machines and shouting, “It’s Alive!!!”

“Psychologist” brings an image of Sigmund Freud talking about penis envy. With his angry look and inevitable cigar he tells you what’s wrong with you all the while being as crazy as a shithouse rat himself.

The word, “onomatopoeia” is not an onomatopoeia and reminds me of John Prine.

A “homonym” is not a homonym and reminds me of white corn.

An “octothorpe” is a hashtag is a pound symbol or maybe a village for spiders.

Any time I hear the word, “wizard” I am reminded of the man behind the curtain, to whom you are to pay no attention. Frantically pulling levers and turning dials, all for effect, smoke and mirrors, like politicians.

“Philosophers” talk about crap you don’t understand and couldn’t care less about, and also can’t find jobs.

The “Obelus” comes between us and makes us smaller.

“Monk” brings to mind Gregorian Chanters in long hooded robes or an obsessive–compulsive private detective.

An “Astrologer” finds meaning in the position of stars and planets, where there is none.

“Schrodingers Cat” was confused. And so was Schrodinger.

The word “Seldom” makes me think of a walled town filled with vendors hawking their wares.

“Calorie” is a mythical land close to Honahlee from the Puff the magic dragon song where people eat all day and never get fat.

A “Cacophony” is having a coughing fit over the phone.

“Cabotage” is to sabotage with cabbage.


Ramblings about nothing, or maybe…

Today, is one of those days. There are times when I can go for days, weeks or even months without having any desire to write. I go about my life, doing whatever I choose (a benefit of being retired) and have no need or desire to write about anything. I like to write because it’s expressive. Normally I have myriad thoughts rambling through my head and suddenly one will set off an alarm and it becomes like putting out a fire. I have to write about it. I have to get that thought out and record it and share it. It’s an urgency. But not always. Some times I don’t have that. Thoughts pop in and out, going along their merry way and I don’t give a hoot about writing any of them down. Today however, the bells are clanging like a four alarm fire but they’re not connected to a thought. It’s maddening because I really want to write, really want to express myself in this way but there’s nothing to express. There’s no world shaking theory, no life or death idea screaming at me from inside my head. And yet something is telling me to write. “Write, damn you! Write now,” it screams! So I’m writing. But I have nothing to say.

It’s a strange world inside my head. Loads of ideas all hanging out, expressing themselves to me, to each other, as if they have a life of their own. Sometimes one idea will give a sideways glance at another idea and yell, “Sod off, you!” And that’s it, the second idea will slink off to sulk by itself and lick it’s wounds. And the first idea, now crowned Kind of Ideas, will scream, “Get to your computer fool! Write me down!” And so, impulsively, I rush do just that, before it gets tired of waiting and disappears around a corner. And then other times, all the ideas get together and have a party all by themselves, leaving me completely out of it. Ignoring my pleading for something witty and wise to write about. “Look at that fool,” they say. “Begging us to present ourselves to him so he can have his way, twisting us into his idea of something we are not. Nuts to him! You’re not getting us!” And they shake their tiny fists at me in defiance. Then they set off the alarm. “Write, Write, Write!!! clang the bells, and then the ideas hide and snicker to themselves as I search in vain for what drove me to the keyboard. It’s a wonder I don’t drink. Is this normal, I ask? Do other writers suffer so? And what does one do, when you have a desire to write but nothing presents itself? Make up farcical crap about the inside of my head, I suppose.

I was never a brilliant child. Never had great or lofty ideas about life or love or anything, for that matter. I played with toys and friends when I was young. Got interested in music and girls as a teenager and basically frittered most of my life away, looking for a good time. It’s only been in the last twenty years or so that I have become interested in the world at large. But that having a good time thing, keeps pulling at me like a long lost lover, wanting me back. I guess I’m kind of selfish. I do things I like, I have fun. I do what I enjoy and avoid what I don’t. I stick my nose into the real world long enough to write some crass crap because I like to pretend I know what I’m talking about and then fade back into my cloistered rendition of reality. (Wow, I’m starting to open up here and I’m not sure I like that.) What the hell? Where is this coming from? Guilt, perhaps? My age creeping up on me? Am I thinking I should have done more with my life? Or maybe I should do more now? I don’t like where this is going. So I’ll stop. You know, a funny thing happened to me on the way to the post office….