Silly Grins

Tuesday, July 3, 2012


Life has a tendency to divide itself up between ages with childhood playing a very important part. Yeah, childhood... that special time when little minds are still growing, learning about the world, exploring innocent ideas about what this grand thing might just be all about. 

When you grow up with someone during that magical age of preteen eternity, you kind of have what might be understood as a shared sacred space. Or something like that. Maybe just innocence...

They hadn’t really talked so much since the time they were kids. There they were, relaxed with time to walk and talk about pretty much everything. Which they more or less did.

“The world’s got a long way to go,” he said.

“You’re telling me,” she replied.

“You think this is better than California?” he asked.

“Down in LA, everything was about The Industry… nobody seemed to be able to talk about anything else.”  She knew he’d been in Japan a while and was probably going to stay. Maybe she thought it was as good as anyplace else.

“People in Japan… can be as strange as they are here. At least when we were kids, it all seemed a lot less complicated. Not like living is really difficult to begin with… there was nothing difficult about living in the ignorance of that more innocent age.”  He didn’t really know where this was headed other than the fact that most people are hard to talk to. She wasn't. 

But the kind of shanty-sounding bluegrass music they were listening to had never been something he liked. There was a hollowness to it that just didn’t connect where it needed to. All fiddle and no stomp. So they were walking along the water.

Then she began to get him up to speed with the world he’d missed. Yeah, the world he'd always missed anyway 'cause he was different. Maybe she thought she'd bring him up to speed to what used to be thought of as ‘the future’ that was happening in a very now time.

“Mom doesn’t have time for that stuff anymore. She’s given up on people, how clueless they can be.”

“How’s that?” He was wondering.

“For example, like the way we don’t celebrate certain holidays. Just at the beginning of this last July, a clerk in the store was trying to make conversation and asked what we had planned for Independence Day.”

He nodded and listened as she continued.

“Mom just walked away. Different generation. As I haven’t given up yet, I stayed and asked him, ‘Excuse me, what does the 4th of July mean to you?’ The eager-to-be sales clerk continued with the usual rhetoric, ‘To celebrate independence and freeduh…’ – that’s when he stopped and I just looked at him. Then he got embarrassed, turned a few different shades of red. I really felt sorry for the guy.” She laughed.

“You see,” she continued, ”they don’t teach people to look at color.”

That afternoon, they talked about a lot of things centered around 'education'. Her daughter can be judged to excel in everything, which is not hard to believe when it is understood that she is home-schooled. No, she's definitely not missing anything by not attending the institutions. 

Living in Japan, 'the system' is religion. A jealous pedagogical religion of repetitive rhetoric designed to prime young minds to embrace the erase of education's hypnotic induction

Recently, he's actually been having a hard time sleeping.

There are those nights where the big picture just won't go away.

Waking up must do this to people. He's thinking about what may be his last opportunity to step back into a collective memory he was, by chance, simply been born into. 

If anything, this is one piece of life worth chronicling before the window shuts. But not here. Not right now. 

Now...this is stomp he can listen to.



  1. Yeah, I think I am the odd man out when it comes to life. In my quest for having a non boring life, I tend to miss everything going on around me. When I look back now, it turns out I am more boring because I am trying to be less boring. Odd how it works out like that right?

    egg sack is gross btw, makes me want to shiver because I can feel them all crawling on my skin.

    1. The arachni-stork stuck that bundle of joy just above where I sit at the dinner table. A gift perhaps. The family was on strict orders not to harm any of the babies. Each of those little critters will hopefully grow up to be palm-sized roach exterminators. We are truly blessed.

    2. Spiders...big ones eat roaches so my school has a strict no kill spider rules. I'll boot a student out on principal for violating that rule.

      I hate cockroaches. That' is an understatement.

      Killing Gecko's is considered very unlucky by Hawaiians and their little shell eggs are not to be messed with either. You can see a lot of Hawaiian souveniers with Gecko's on them and I think most don't realize they have a symbolic meaning that goes beyond t-shirt designs.

      I was told by an old Hawaiian never to kill a Gecko or break an egg shell of an infant.He was very very serious. Bad luck follows suck acts. I just nodded my head and have never ever knowingly messed with a Gecko or it's eggs...I got one crawling on the School's glass door now....kinda feels like good luck.

    3. Geckos are definitely revered by Wifey and me. They tend to hang out on the windows near the outside lights, prime location for basically any airborne insect. Haven't seen any out yet this year, but the better half says they are there.

      Last year, there was an accident where one of the green house guests found his or her way into the washing machine. We only figured out what had happened days later when looking for where a not so pleasant smell was coming from. We are also a bit more careful now when opening and closing windows at night.

      Geckos, spiders, lizards, snakes, and frogs are pretty much guaranteed sanctuary when they visit, though our slivering friend and Mr. Frog best get along when they keep to their respective stratospheres. Snakes are typically under the house anyway.

      Apparently the rainy season did take its toll last week when two soggy lizards were found with their heads caught in drainage holes at the bottom of empty planter boxes. Hopefully they weren't the ones featured in my blogger icon. Casualties of the season...

    4. I've adopted the no kill policy in recent years. I had a nasty spider crawling on my neck last year that I almost killed pulling off. There are exceptions to the rule. all widow type spiders are on the shit list if they are in my zone/on the house directly. out in the shed is a different story since I didn't go out there very often.

      Spiders get a bad rap because they are icky and ugly, Thank god roaches over here tend to stay outside. if they go inside, you are doing something wrong or being dirty as hell. And they don't fly here.

    5. Black widows are definitely not welcome in the house. Fortunately, we don't have them here. We've got some impressive centipedes though. First encounter with one was in a clothing store. Initially thought the clerk was weak and squeamish when he yelped as I used a paper to scoop up the little critter (only about six inches) before putting it in the bin. Now I realize that centipedes should probably be handled with just a little more caution.

  2. The bigger picture... When we're young, we stand really close up and right in front of it so that even if we crane our heads back and look up, or from side to side, we can only see the minor details nearest our eyes. As we grow older, we walk backward away from the picture so that we can see more more and more details and how they fit together.

    After a certain age, though, we're so far away from the picture that we feel little if any connection to it.

    1. Those kids, with their interests in the minor details, have helped me understand my connection to the big picture in terms of where I fit in on that cycle. Thanks to them, the connectedness is there whether I want it to be or not. I really want to be able to sleep in late on holidays. But that ain't gonna happen.

      I've been extremely lucky to find a number of older folks who never lost that understanding of how things fit together. While a number of people tend to kind of fade out, these folks have continued to intensify the ability they have to see even more details, very close up. And at the same time, being able to pull back a look at that big picture without becoming nauseous.

      At least I know that it is possible, even if someday I find myself floating far away from the big picture that I am merely a tiny part of.

      (cue giant wind chimes)