Sunday, September 21, 2008

About the Weird

"You're so weird !"

If only I had a nickel for every time in my life someone told me that.

I know this blog has picked up some new readers recently, not that this was an unexpected development. After all, Google my name - it's the first thing that comes up. Frankly I'm surprised it didn't happen sooner. Last weekend my inlaws told me that they found the old Puppet Show, and while I don't know if they're regular readers, I generally assume they are. The thing is, I really don't publish anything on here I wouldn't want my mother (who has been a faithful Puppeteer since the launch) or my grandparents (who may one day stumble upon this blog) to read. But the more in-the-world realization triggered a brief audience review of material (I went back to make sure I hadn't said anything extraordinarily stupid, and I hadn't). But I realized there's some, well, weirdness going on here.

Like all good latticeworks of coincidence, this story continued yesterday as I walked into Forbidden Planet, London's mega-comic-shop, and was browsing while waiting for some friends to finish their business. I randomly picked up an art book about the gracefulness of machines, cables, and circuitry; something I'd never considered 'beautiful' or even 'graceful,' but certainly was as the artist depicted it. Some of the artwork though one could easily have labelled 'weird.' And yeah, it was pretty out there.

But this triggered another slightly existential thought process. I have rarely, if even, apologized for my being 'weird' when I occasionally say some goofy non sequitor at work or described one of my 'wouldn't it be cool if' scenarios to someone who clearly may not have ever considered attaching 'cool' to whatever concept I might be floating.

And yet this is the very bread-and-butter of my existence. It is the root of who I am, my very personhood relies on these 'weird' connections between things that don't seem to go together. I used to turn away from Cubist art because, I claimed, "I didn't understand it." I still don't understand it but I can certainly appreciate it more now as I grow older, because I see in it possibilities and connections that never occurred to me before.

Speaking of my grandparents, for my high school graduation my grandfather got me a carved rock for my desk (OK, a paperweight) with an inscription in it: 'Some people see the world as it is and ask why. Others see the world as it could be and ask why not.' I don't like dualisms and have asked 'why' as much as I've asked 'why not,' but if I had to choose I'd put myself in that later category.

Sure, these things may not go together. But they will. I may not understand how something works within a system now, but that's very likely because the system isn't understood, or the framework is wrong, or the thing misunderstood.

It's a big old world out there, and another thing I realize the more I go on is that it's far more full of wonder than most people give it credit for, if only they'd see and hear and taste and feel and create.

Photo: Grilled Shrimp at Creek Cafe by mamamusings.

1 comment:

Nykemartyn said...

Many of the better entrepreneurs we know engage anyone they come across about their ideas. On the surface, this seems kind of dumb. Every time you describe your plans, you are providing a blueprint for a competitor. So, why do they do it? My hypothesis is they do it because their experience has taught them that, on average, every time they describe their ideas, they learn more than they reveal, no matter how much they reveal
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