This is very important — to take leisure time. Pace is the essence. Without stopping entirely and doing nothing at all for great periods, you’re gonna lose everything…just to do nothing at all. Very, very important. And how many people do this in modern society? Very few. That’s why they’re all totally mad, frustrated, angry and hateful.
:: Charles Bukowski ::
when i was younger, my dad had a curious rule about tv: no tv on school nights — except during dinner. yup, close family, great communicators, this is why i don’t talk much. so anyway, because we ate dinner rather religiously at 6:30pm, all my pop culture larnin’ was limited to — first and foremost — world news with peter jennings, followed by whatever i chose until dinner time ended — i even remember eating exceptionally slowly to see the end of episodes. when i was feeling generous, i let my sister choose and we watched jeopardy (and kept score) or mystery! (and i passed out, faceplant into rice bowl). but most of the time, the clicker landed on WB11 or fox 5, where i found the sitcoms in syndication that all the cool kids at school talked about.
i learned all about the soup nazi, cowabunga, and the rachel at least a year late, but it made no matter. the mindless stuff had my sister and me cackling — and importantly, eating at a remedial pace. however, it was observed that my dad never so much as cracked a smile (mom was busy daydreaming about peter jennings, scribbing on napkins “mrs jennings” in different script styles and “PJ + [her maiden initials],” hiding it when my dad glanced over).
so i asked one day how he, a fellow human being, could somehow watch seinfeld and not laugh. rather unexpectedly, he exploded with, “much ado about nothing!!!!” and launched into a rant about how the show goes on and on about nothing and that he’d rather tune out and be left to his own very important thoughts. like father like daughter, what can i say. i certainly can’t deny that situational comedy violates his highest priority of an unclouded mind, given the sample of his parenting below.
in an email to my sister after she bought her semi-automatic car, he managed to wax philosophical…
[Dear Clutch Rider Daughter]:
Stay in semiautomatic. It saves the sweat. It is really annoying to drive in manual mode. Every 10 miles up or down one has to change the gear! On congested city streets and crowded highways, with constant stop and go, pickup and slowdown, one’s right hand will be tired in no time. Besides, too busy with gear shifting reduces one’s alert on the coming traffic condition.
Modern automatic transmission has improved gas mileage quite a lot. There is absolute no advantage in using a manual one. The one who still insists is a bull with a twisted vanity.
In an ever more complex society one uses better and better tools to handle the conventional cores, so that one has time left to concentrate on the new ones. And it is how well one can handle the new ones that one is called a hero.
in case you are wondering…yes, he speaks like this in 3D, too. does everything about me make sense now?
however, i can deny that i prioritize an unclouded mind. i’m all about clouding. i love clouds. above the clouds, how do you catch a cloud and pin it down, a walk in the clouds starring keanu reeves which is so much better than anyone would expect even keanu’s mom, i uploaded all the music on this mac to the cloud on friday when i learned i get free gigs on amazon music, the thrill of cloud printing, looking out a plane window in flight when i was too old to be wondering, i even foolishly asked my mom (of mrs would-be jennings fame):
me: can those clouds out there support me? could i walk on them [with keanu]?
mom: no way, jose!
me: what about a paper clip?
mom [putting down her peter jennings biography to scrunch her brows together and pout her upper lip a bit before replying]: maybe.
have you ever tossed a paper clip out the window of a plane mid-flight? yeah, didn’t think so. she’s right and you know it.
all this to say, yes. yes, you’re right! this entire blog is unapologetically about nothing.