Monday, August 22, 2011
Anyone who knows me for a period of time longer than a week will certainly attest. I know there are other weird people in the world, hey maybe we’re all peculiar, but my particular eccentricities come forth in mysterious ways. Some of my rituals and fears are unusual. For example, I make strange noises each time I move, knees click, ankles creak and my every movement is punctuated by primal screams meant to preempt anything that the many herniated disks in my spine might throw at me. I also have irrational fears and lack of fears, often on my treks through big cities, I walk alone off the beaten track, down alley ways and dark corners searching for my inevitable “other way back”, all the while oblivious to the precarious nature of my surroundings. Recently, upon my return from a particularly seedy journey, I became unravelled with panic when I had to share an elevator with a man holding a poodle in his arms. Elevators are fine but they contain very little in the way of self-protective equipment, the kind I would need to draw upon if attacked by a 1 foot long furry ball of canine. The “other way back” for me has become a lifestyle choice. As my son can attest to the many lengthened trips we take on the way home from anywhere just to ride past the best “chewing candy store”, the one where we could decide together on a sports wager – anything to extend the journey. It’s a sickness.
I also realize the conversations and experiences that I fill my time with are…unique. Like the time I brought a beautiful woman to a particle accelerator for a date. I’m not sure what I was looking for but who could resist a long stair climb to the depths of University of Toronto’s quantum physics laboratory to see (or more accurately – not see) subatomic particles fly around a mile long racing tube only to be splatted against a wall to determine which of the little fellas made the best impact. Shannon, I’m sorry! Or perhaps my peculiar passions could be exemplified better by my trip to the heart of the Wisconsin Dells to see 2 of the world’s last whooping cranes frolic in the mosquito infested backwoods of cheese country. I am a sucker for the esoteric, the fragile, the vulnerable and the pure. Other people tell exciting stories about people and things. They inform about relatives, friends, motor boats, kittens and the cottage. They describe intimately details about shopping trips and the great deal they got on …insert item here. My stories generally surround ideas, like how cool it is that our bodies contain reconstituted atoms from Shakespeare and Mozart but none from Elvis. Why the constellation Cassiopeia (daughter of Andromeda) hangs upside down in the night sky or how the Chicago Cubs continue to be cursed by a billy goat for over 100 years. I would just like to say to those who have pretended to listen over the years. Thank you.
Some would say it’s never a dull moment with me, and I suppose others would say it’s nothing but dull moments, c’est la vie, I’m officially too old to change. I guess that’s the great thing about this blog. For me I can write undisciplined, stream of consciousness nonsense and I get it all out of my system. But maybe the true value of these passages is the public service I am doing for my companions who can now look at me as I am about to warm up the story about the life and times of Johannes Kepler and say, “no need, read it on your blog”. Win /Win I say.