Friday, December 23, 2011

A Cup Of Everything, And Toffable Tutter On The Side, Please.

"I mean, at the end of the day, we're all just floating in a whole bunch of Everything on a moderately sized spinning rock."

Floating in a whole bunch of everything. Of Every Thing.

Our eyes are untrained, to the Every Thing of the universe. They do not see most of the Every Thing. They see what is confirmed by our Senses, confirmed as what we've labeled a Reality.

Labels, labels, labels, and definitions. Labels and definitions are good. So crisp and tidy. Like envelopes. So sortable, easily compartmentalized. So handy as a fundamental thinking tool for a human's intellect. Take, for example, setting up a kitchen. We're unpacking a box labeled "cups". We pull out a small, purple, plastic cup. We place it on the bottom shelf--this is a juice cup, we may think. We pull out another cup, same in size and shape, but it's glass. We place it on the shelf above--this is for guests. We pull out a several more--a wine glass, a coffee mug, a souvenir mug--all cups but look how we define and label and categorize and compartmentalize! A place for each cup, a use, a purpose, a definition, a label. I have a point, but first: A cup, fine, that was perhaps a boring example....really, I just enjoy the sound of the word.


cup. cup. cup.

Makes. me. happy.

But, what a catastrophe! Imagine, though it's somewhat impossible, if all of a sudden--"cup" was erased from out labeling system--erased from recognition. Erased from being definable. The world is all of a sudden in Cup Chaos! What the hell are all these...these....aah! Maybe? Or....would...stay with me here, would they disappear? Fade, into the unseen oceans of the Ever Thing. Why not? Because we can touch them, right, is that what you're thinking? Something we can touch surely cannot disappear? But not so fast, every definable characteristic of Cup--is gone, which includes the understanding of shape, or texture, or size--because those are characteristics that apply to an object, which we would normally call Cup, but Cup is gone! They are floating characteristics, label "contributors" with nothing to stick to! I know, okay, it's a really bizarre Analeigh head game game. Ahah, we could go a step further and inspect words themselves--the labels, like "bizarre", technically one of those floating label contributors. To exist it must have a Thing to stick to! "Bizarre" alone, can only be itself defined by giving a Sense-confirmable example, slapping it on to a perceivable Every Thing, or by pushing it around against other similar words--like a pinball machine: Weird (clink) strange (clink) unique (clink, clink) unordinary ([what does that even mean!?] clink). But then, that kind of fails because our understanding of THOSE words are still tethered to things that we can sense.

So. Back to the beginning. What about the Every Thing we cannot sense? The place that Things like labels and definitions and words and thoughts and feelings and Hoofa Grumps and Bolixtrees and Mana Choos exist. The beautiful or horrible or wonderful or treacherous Chaos that swims happily, playfully skipping in its' own wake of undefinable existence that only IT itself can define. The Chaos, that allows a human to think of things we think we cannot think or briefly, in a state of what we may label "insanity", see a Some Thing that is part of the hidden Every Thing. And it is the brave one, who takes from those moments, a sliver of trust--of insight, or enlightenment--take a sliver of the invisible Every Thing, and, by refraining a jealous and destructive Doubt, filters and hammers and tailors, cinches, cuts, pulls, and shapes, the fragile sliver through the incredible factory of a Mind. A mind! Now, setting the body as a builder--the Mind CREATES! A part of the EveryThing, unveiled. Oh, you clever Chaos, you.

Those wisps of undefinable light, shapes, ideas--those fleeting moments of bliss, a label-free, undefinable experience--pure possibility! The most, most precious form of living. Free of doubt, of judgement, of limited understanding. Free to, as Chaos, skip in the waves of Miranans and Killabins. Dive into an ocean filled with Jupa and Smints and feel Alaganta, experience the Impossible. Such adventure, such pleasure.

If we might be able to apply such an experience to the meeting of ever new Thing we meet. Like...I don't know, a person. The possibilities of a person without definition...without label.

A Cup of Every Thing.

...Perhaps it would taste like a cup of breamant crimt with a inp of toffable tutter.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Dear Mili and Chewing Wax

This was really nothing more than a personal exercise in allowing myself to follow a flow of thoughts, connecting one idea, memory, or thing to another and so on. Don't try and make sense of it--I'm quite sure you'd get rather frustrated. The second paragraph is the first page to "Dear MIli", a beautiful, dark children's book by Wilhelm Grimm and Maurice Sendak. This paragraph, well, it's just incredibly important to me. I felt like typing it.

Chewing wax, green cellophane, beats, blue hat and sunglasses, glitter skirt, mustard, spearmint sticky, red lights, white wine, red eyes, blue eyes, brown eyes, what color where his eyes, slow like sighs, fast dancing, the sound waves so loud they vibrated off my lips, elbows, unicorn meat SPAM tin, his necklace, oatmeal sludging, love, goose blue, goose bumps, hurt, pricks, bites, bruises, black carpet and cream tiles, apple trees, apple bags, apple box, click, red hair and north carolina, philadelphia story, white sicks, juniper, brumble, the Caring, I trust only old and warn out bricks, lights, lights that absorb into your body--absorb and affect, moksha, damp wood, lost jacket, cold shoulders, please hold my hand, cold hands, blue hands, plum, bernard, rust, pages, papers, ink, words, things, impermanence, abject, boiled milk, whales, paled trees that we walk on, cube shook, echo. ECHO.

Dear Mili,

I'm sure you have gone walking in the woods or in green meadows, and passed a clear, flowing brook. And you've tossed a flower into the brook, a red one, a blue one, or a snow-white one. It drifted away, and you followed it with your eyes as far as you could. And it went quietly away with the little waves, farther and farther, all day long and all night too, by the light of the moon or the stars. It didn't need much light, for it knew the way and it didn't get lost. When it had traveled for three days without stopping to rest, another flower came along on another brook. A child like you, but far far away from here, had tossed it into a brook at the same time. The two flowers kissed, and went their way together and stayed together until they both sank to the bottom. You have also seen a little bird flying away over the mountain in the evening. Perhaps you thought it was going to bed, not at all, another little bird was flying over other mountains, and when all was dark on the earth, the two of them met in the last rays of sunshine. The sun shone bright on their feathers, and as they flew back and forth in the light they told each other many things that we on the earth below could not hear. You see, the brooks and the flowers and the birds come together, but people do not; great mountains and rivers, forests and meadows, cities and villages lie in between, and they have their set places and cannot be moved, and humans cannot fly. But one human heart goes out to another, undeterred by what lies between. Thus does my hear go out to you, and though my eyes have not seen you yet, it loves you and thinks it is sitting beside you. And you say: "Tell me a story." And it replies: "Yes, dear Mili, just listen."

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Oatmeal Sludging or Competitive Title Alternative to 'Chicken Noodle Soup For the Soul'.

Oatmeal. I love oatmeal. Now, the way my mother makes oatmeal, I've learned, is quite unique. Slow cooked oats in salted water, then, stir in cream, raisins,brown sugar (cups and cups of brown sugar) and finally, what makes it amazing, a stick of butter. At least one stick. A whole tub, if you're the soft-churned type. Maybe more sugar. Butter and sugar. It practically ran through my veins when I was little. Butter and sugary sweetness. The world was a giant bowl of delicious oatmeal. Once in awhile, I might bite into a raisin--it might be sour, but instantly replaced, even complimented, by buttery, sugary, creamy perfection.

I'm going to now transition into an awkward analogy. Oatmeal. I am swimming in a giant bowl of oatmeal. And not my mother's. Nope. This is unsalted, pasty, watery oatmeal. The kind that sticks to your fingers, dries in crusty patches, and is far from enticing enough to lick off. Hardly napkin worthy oatmeal. Just wash it off, down the sink. It's lame oatmeal. Maybe undercooked, too. No butter, cream, brown sugar, insert favorite oatmeal topping here. This. This is the oatmeal I'm navigating my days through.

I know there are people that can relate out there; oatmeal sludging. That feeling of heaviness, of every movement and intention being weighted by something that glues itself to every exposed piece of you. Many more of you are probably saying "what the hell does oatmeal sludging mean? She feels like she's covered in oatmeal..?" No. I shower. There is no oatmeal on me. What I think I mean ("she... doesn't know? ") is that the older I get, the thicker, stickier, and heavier life, in general, becomes. I think that's common. I really don't know--I only say that to feel a little more sane myself. Maybe not everyone interprets that as Oatmeal Sludging ("oh, she capitalized it. She's serious now") but for me, I needed to identify it. Label it, stamp it, categorize it, define it loosely. "It" being a feeling. See, recently how I interpret things, feel things, process things, has been changing at a chaotic, incomprehensible rate. And I was actually going berserk. Most things I thought I understood I became unsure of. Things I wanted previously, no longer applied. What a hectic mind frenzy, what madness! All sense of self--evaporated before I could even scoop a drop up as proof of my own, grounded, existence. What is going on?! (cough--it's called 'your twenties'--cough). Peanut-gallery-in-my-head aside, what is going on, is the realization of, and experience in, Oatmeal Sludging. Living daily life in that highly viscus, goop that sets in with responsibility and age.

I'm not so okay with that idea. What to do with such an analogy? This, this is where my blogs are handy on a personal level. Because, I can bring it all back around, like a good little writer that is pretending her words are making sense. Bring it to the beginning, tie it all in. Package it all up, stick a bow on top, and left click-it it into to space. Ready?:

I, I love my mother's oatmeal. I love the uniqueness of it. It's like crack for the soul--screw that "Chicken Noodle for the Soul" no, this is Crack-Like Oatmeal for the Soul. ("Wait, how does she know what crack is like--" NO! No. I do NOT, it's another analogy. Go with it. But don't, I mean, just get a bowl of delicious oatmeal, okay?) Ultimately, what makes it so special is not the sugar, or the raisins, or even the amazing butter. It's the love she put into making a delicious bowl of the best oatmeal she knew how to make. She had no 'secret recipe', she simply put in what she thought I'd love. Of course! What if that's the 'secret remedy' to Oatmeal Sludging? Discovering and remembering to add my own ingredients? An appreciation of 'being' and an openness to changing realities--that's the raisins, balance. Butter: acceptance of what is, and what is myself. And sugar, all that sugar! Love! Naturally. SO many cups of love. My mother's oatmeal, flowing through my veins in a rather different way.

Now, Oatmeal Sludging is still there. I think that's life. Life's naturally a bit sticky to get through. But, knowing that maybe all it takes to make that goop a bit tastier, a little sweeter, even wonderful to move through, is remembering a few of those ingredients--well, that's more manageable than the previous chaotic blunder I was swimming through. Don't get me wrong here, life cannot simply be fixed with oatmeal analogies, or brown sugar used as a metaphor for love, with all its complexity. I'm in no way saying that. But I do believe there is something in carrying around little "happiness reminders", silly life analogies, or memories, to just kind of infuse the day with. In this case, I've apparently been really missing oatmeal. But look what I've learned from letting myself explore that!

Oh what a thing, life is so much more than a bowl of cherries. Life's a bowl of the most perfect, unique, oatmeal. I really should inform Quaker Oats. I feel like a new company motto could really help my blog out. I also find the man on the logo oddly handsome. He's got stature. He gets my analogy. He adds butter to his oats, I'm sure....

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Bring your rain boots.

If I close my eyes I can be there. I can stand in the rain. I can lift my head, open my eyes, watch it fall towards me. Thousands upon thousands of rain drops falling from a dark, grey, nothing. Falling down in unrehearsed perfection. Falling with individual purpose. With necessity. Every raindrop--alone. And I can be surrounded, with coldly limited empathy, by beautiful, crystal globes...

I love subways. I love watching the colors, the spectrum of people. People always seem a bit more, I don't know, human? In confined spaces. Not much place to hide yourself, I suppose. I should probably listen to the sounds in the subway more. Right now, I don't think I could rightly describe them. I usually have my ipod on. It disconnects me. I feel like I can be invisible. I can just watch, you know? Like my own little movie with my own soundtrack and I don't have to be part of it. Sometimes I kind of wonder where I go. I imagine somewhere similar to a "man-cave" in the corner of my mind and whenever I check out--I must go there. Maybe there's a beanbag chair. Maybe a popcorn machine. Maybe not--actually popcorn doesn't sit well with me. I'm sure there is something worth my time though, I mean, I think I go there often.

Empathy would be kinder of me. I stand, instead, selfishly immersed in observing; taking, stealing, peace from what might be a very private event for a raindrop. It is, of course, inevitable. Every raindrop must face that moment of contact with the earth. It's so small, that single raindrop, in the thousand upon thousands. It is so fragile, so important and still so insignificant. But it exists, and it does so on its own. Is it at peace? Is it afraid? Did it want to fall? Did it have a choice? Did it accept it's fate? Or is it desperately trying to suspend its self in the unsupportive and unmoved atmosphere? Alone in space and alone with space and then me, invading the vulnerable moment...

Talking to people is always a strange thing to me. I mean, hah, no, don't get me wrong, I very much enjoy a good conversation. And good conversation doesn't have to be deep, right, it doesn't have to be about anything significant. Not in my book. Naw, some of the best conversations I've had are usually about things that really, are quite insignificant in my daily life. Weird studies like how different drugs affect spiders. New Youtube viral videos. Funny words and names, like "crumpet" or "pussy willow". Gum. A lot of good conversations about food, come to think of it. But anyway, my point is, I can't help but picture everyone in these conversations, myself included, as one of those creepy talking dolls. You know, like, Charlie McCarthy? There, something for you to google. And I'll be talking, or moving my mouth at least, and get that Charlie McCarthy image in my head and mid-sentance, I'll have to laugh. During that laugh, that's when the doll image disappears, and I'm there, in that laugh. And I immerse myself in its warm, bubbling, peach colored cloud, naked in spirit. Of course, when I look back up at the faces of my fellow conversationalists, it is apparent, the doll was more suitable for practical reason. Naked anything tends to make most people a bit uncomfortable. Sometimes...sometimes I've had "naked conversations". Like the ones that take place on kitchen floors at 3 o'clock in the morning. A bag of Sun-Chips pushed to the side. The kitschy, yellowing tile is pocked with mini-marshmallows from that tossing game earlier. Wine glasses that haven't been touched for awhile. It's quiet. Maybe there's a clock. But time isn't there. Naked moments. Vulnerable. We talk about our parents. About that person. About a thought that won't leave our heads. About this old necklace. About the things in between. We laugh, and we immerse ourselves, and we look up, and we are humans, fully.

When I shut my eyes, and open them again, I can watch the rain drops shatter. I can watch a single drop explode. Reverberate back up on impact, and splinter into different pieces. Shattering, scattering, exploding, delicately, before falling and resting back to the ground. More shattering, more fragmenting, smashing to bits. It is a minefield. And I can only look on, helpless. I can feel each explosion on my hands, on my face, in my eyes. I can blink, and make another. I'm standing in a war zone. I hadn't realized. There is devastation in the fate of every small drop. I don't want to see this. I don't want to realize it.

I'm in a Starbucks right now. Okay, I know, I know, couldn't I find anywhere a bit more inspirational? To be honest--my pumpkin spiced americano keeps me pretty damn happy. And there's a nice window so that when I take a sip and look up from my computer, I can look at things going on outside. Right now, there's a man sitting on the sidewalk across the street, leaning against a neon lit sign for an Economax, some currency exchange bureau. He's holding a ball cap in one hand, and the other is clutching at the sleeve of his jacket. It's cold out. Poor guy. He's removed his scarf. Better suited as a cushion. Oh, he does have a cigaret. That's good. Not that smoking is good or anything, but, I'm glad he's got one. I wonder if he's ever had a naked conversation on a kitchen floor. He's standing up. Walking over the the McDonalds window. He's looking inside. He's going back to his neon lit sign. He's rewrapping the scarf around his neck. Yeah, it's cold. When I look at him, I don't see any Charlie McCarthy, I'll tell you that. I feel helpless. Kind of like I'm in a warzone. Maybe he's the bi-product of a raindrop. Maybe he's a fragment that has exploded, and has yet to settle. Maybe he's no more or less settled than the rest of us. It's not really something anyone can determine except for himself. For his sake, I hope he doesn't see himself as a raindrop. I hope he's not feeling fragmented. I hope, even if it is in ignorance, he feels part of a whole, and not alone in the least. But..with.

When I close my eyes, when I'm in a subway, when my music is on, when I laugh, I go to where I can stand in the rain. I don't go to some man-cave like cavern of my mind. I go to a mind-field. It's more like reality that I initially thought. But funny thing, rain. Every drop on its own. And those explosions. Nature leaves no choice. But maybe there is something to be learned here. And I think (now, I'm going to start putting on rain boots as I explain. I recommend you do the same here), I think that I've been distracted by the raindrops. They're each existing in their own nakedness and, it really shouldn't concern me. But what happens after, after the impact, after the fragmentation...there is a connection. There is something created, a puddle, a lake, an ocean. There is something whole. Where many become one, become equal. Are your rain boots on yet? We are all like rain drops. There is a time when we are, whether we want to be or not, falling alone. There will, inevitably, also be a moment of impact--where things and life and our individual ideas of existence, it all just shatters into many, many, different pieces. And then there is peace. There is the realization that everyone around us is falling and crashing and breaking too. Perhaps we can unite, and connect, and become part of a whole. A whole that might not be perfect, but there is perfection within it. Like a murky puddle. Now do you understand why I had you put those boots on? What a beautiful, imperfect, murky, muddy puddle of rain...

Close your eyes. I'll close mine. On the count of three, we'll open them, and you and I--we can stand in the rain. And you and I, we're going to splash in the puddles. your eyes....