Mirror, Mirror Off The Wall

“I used to live in a room full of mirrors; all I could see was me. I take my spirit and I crash my mirrors, now the whole world is here for me to see.”
– Jimi Hendrix (A Room Full Of Mirrors)

 

I find it strange that mirrors don’t come with instructions. They are, in fact, one of the most dangerously brutal objects found in our homes, harboring the potential to destroy our emotional well-being with ease. They threaten our image of ourselves, and even at times warp our perceptions. And yet, there is no warning label about their misuse.

Their addictive properties offer a vise to both the vain and the masochistic. For the naive, they readily shatter precious illusions and reflect the naked distortion of our imagined perfection. Yes, mirrors are uncompromising in their function, merciless in capacity, and indignant to their facility.

Seeking the truth through the ‘looking glass’ we stare … and lie to ourselves about our reflection, reflecting our own hypocrisy or delusion.

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The Impetus Of Impediment

What is the nature of the luxury which enervates and destroys nations?
Are we sure that there is none of it in our own lives?
– Henry David Thoreau
As beautiful as simplicity is, it can become a tradition that stands in the way of exploration.
– Laura Nyro

 

I lie in the living room, a song in my head. My guitar sits across the room, silently resonating a song from long ago. It yearns for something new. It beckons me to come and create something more than I can, at present. I stare at it with loving disdain, unmoving and unmoved.

Yes, yes, it often seems like the hardest thing to do is that which we know we ought to do but which requires effort: our labors of love so to speak. Due diligence suggests we apply some elbow grease and put our backs into the matter at hand. Conventional wisdom says nothing about waiting for the ‘perfect time’, however. 

It comes to pass that we reach a point where we realize we need more, oh so much more, to sustain our passion, enhance our vision, nurture our idealism, and facilitate our expression. At this point, we begin to wrestle with the contention that it’s not enough for us to rest on our hollow laurels or innate talents. And so with reluctance, we knowingly resign ourselves to the reality that we need to transform ourselves in order to thrive. Yet, agreeing in principle is one thing … doing is another.

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Standing Up To Shutting Down

“I am opposed to any form of tyranny over the mind of man.”
– Thomas Jefferson
“I can calculate the motion of heavenly bodies, but not the madness of people.”
– Isaac Newton

You know what I hate? Going to the beach on a hot day and baking in the sun. You see the Sun has a funny way of defying every maneuver I make with my flimsy umbrella to shield myself from its searing heat that creeps ever closer towards me. As sweat pours through my blistered pores, each and every solar radiated fibre in my body screams ‘Help! I’m burning up!’ The grievous cacophony of cellular shrieking overwhelms me so … that I just lay there and allow sunstroke to set in.

So that’s what I hate. Unfortunately, it’s only a metaphor for what really has been bothering me lately: life overload. And trust me, I’m completely and utterly fried!

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In Light Of A Bohemian Smile

God gave us the gift of life; it is up to us to give ourselves the gift of living well.
– Voltaire
Every moment is a golden one for him who has the vision to recognize it as such.
– Henry Miller

 

How easy is it for you to smile? Can you manage a fake one? Do you need someone’s help? Go on and give it a shot.

A few mornings ago, I looked in the mirror; it was my birthday. I’m 49 – a little older and a lot wiser with still lots to learn. Ok, maybe ‘learn’ is not the right sentiment; maybe ‘make sense of’ is. In any event, I think the older I get, the more I scratch my head over life, which no doubt might be the reason for my thinning hair! Still, compared with other male members of my family, past and present, I still have plenty of hair on my head, so I really shouldn’t complain.

Indeed, I have a lot to smile about and day by day I try really really hard to remind myself of that. If you blink though, you might miss it.

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Wool And Water: Who’s Fleecing Whom?

“Can you do addition?” the White Queen asked.
“What’s one and one and one and one and one
and one and one and one and one and one?”
“I don’t know,” said Alice. “I lost count.”
– Lewis Carrol (Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There)

 

I ask you … is inconsistency the only thing consistent in your life? Is ambling through life with no real purpose seem to be the norm for you? Does getting through the day seem to be both a tall order and the order of the day?

Turbulent times, indeed! I’m reminded of the old Chinese toast that chimes, “May you live in interesting times”. Of course, the saying actually reflects a curse … but then I guess it’s all how you interpret it. Still, a devil’s advocate might suggest that going all ‘Pollyanna’ would most likely mean that something has gotten lost in the translation! Yes, it’s often hard to know what to believe and more importantly what to think.

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Dialing For Rejection: Just Say No

It ain’t no use to sit and wonder why, babe
It don’t matter, anyhow
An’ it ain’t no use to sit and wonder why, babe
If you don’t know by now
– Bob Dylan (Don’t think twice, it’s all right)

Do you find it hard to say ‘no‘? By the same token, how easy is it for you to accept rejection? In reality, these are two sides of the same coin in respect to how developed your ’emotional intelligence’ is … and perhaps how stable you are as an individual. Now to be honest, if you are already questioning your stability, then you might as well question that of society’s, as well … as I often do on this blog.

Back when I was in kindergarten, I distinctly remember being told “when you grow up you can be anything you want, even the President of the United States!” In retrospect, I wonder what the point of this ‘pie in the sky’ pep talk was? On the surface, it was surely to motivate us kids to succeed in life. Certainly it was to inspire us to set goals and to be all that we were born to be. Yes yes, we all know teachers are liars but …

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Crabalocker Crabs Boxed In Sideways

Some get the gravy
And some get the gristle
Some get the marrow bone
And some get nothing
Though there’s plenty to spare.
– Joni Mitchell (Banquet)

 

They say that moving houses is one of life’s most stressful situations. With this statement I tend to both agree and disagree. However, more to the point is that it’s just a depressing affair. There are surprises, usually of the morose kind, as well as subtle disappointments, bith expected and unexpected. The ‘normalcy’ of what you have come to expect, even if defined by ‘normal standards’ as ‘abnormal’, tends to be replaced by a form of irreverent and frenzied ‘hell’ …a helter skelter of sorts that fans of the ‘Lost’ television series know all too well. Yes, I think ‘lost’ is a shade of one way of describing how I feel these days.

I really don’t know where to begin in attempting to extricate myself from this self-imposed purgatory, because ‘sideways’ is not a usual option. But, that is pretty much the way I’ve been moving through life the last 2 months or so. Shuffling to the left, shuffling to the right, I shuffle and shuffle … and then I shut down. Not one for banging my head against a wall over and over again, I’ve just withdrawn into my crabby shell and have been waiting for this state of suffocation to pass … sometimes even forgetting to breathe.

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