A Mess of Ideas Defying Expectations

Hung velvet overtaken me
Dim chandelier awaken me
To a song dissolved in the dawn
The music hall a costly bow
The music all is lost for now
To a muted trumpeter swan
Columnated ruins domino
– Surf’s Up (Brian Wilson & Van Dyke Parks)I have an idea, but it begs the following questions:

  • Why is it easier to make a mess of some things than to just sort them out in the first place?
  • Why is it harder to achieve greatness than mediocrity?
  • Why is it easier to say ‘no’ than ‘yes’?
  • Why is it easier to go nowhere and do nothing than to set out on an adventure?
  • Why do so many adventures we set out on come up short?
  • Why do things implode with less intensity than they explode?

These are the types of questions equally raised by the hopeful and the hopeless; the dreamers and the depressed. They are part and parcel of the same enigmatic shaded overtones of our existence, and fail to answer what we are supposed to do with it.

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I think, therefore I am distracted.

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More than occasionally, I get distracted by things I take more than a passing interest in. I’m working and then somehow “tele-pathetically”, my attention and thoughts have been teleported to some obscure webpage which I micromanage my way through. It just takes one stray thought to hijack my stream of consciousness. It could be about something trivial I read in the news that morning, or something profound I thought about the day before, or even something ethereal I dreamed about … or daydreamed about. Whatever it is, I pursue this new found interest with behemoth vehemence, almost as if I’m championing some cause.

It could be, I think, a coping mechanism of some sorts that I inherited genetically from my father. You see, he was a real estate appraiser, and a reformed mathematician. Half the day he spent driving around different neighborhoods looking at “comparables” (houses that had previously sold) and trying hard not to look like he was casing said neighborhoods for a future home invasion scheme. The other half of the day he would write up his appraisal reports: monotonous long and short forms to be completed with data and figures that mortgage lenders would eventually rip borrowers off with. When completing such forms, my father needed distraction to break up the stress of monotony. If at home or at the office, he’d listen to talk or sports radio. Usually though, he liked to sit at busy places so he could  look up at the all the hustle and bustle and watch people and the world go by. Really! You’d find him sitting at a mall, at the airport, in a hotel lobby, etc. Had Starbucks been around when he was working he most likely would have been a fixture. He had an active mind… so he needed distraction. I’m pretty much the same way … (pensive pregnant pause entered here) … though most likely due to the raging modicum of my mom in me as well, I fear that a small part of my willingness and penchant to be distracted might also betray a much needed break from reality.

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