Archive for category: Medicinal Properties

Zen and the Economy of My Words

14 Feb 2002
February 14, 2002

horoscopeI’ve got laryngitis. The rest of my body feels fine. In fact, my throat and voice box feel completely normal. It’s only when I attempt to speak that I even realize I’ve got a problem. I’m revisiting puberty as my voice cracks and jumps two octaves without prior notice. But this might be a good thing.

Co-workers don’t expect you to answer them. In fact, you aren’t called upon at meetings to report. If you try, you are given sympathy (a valuable commodity in the workplace).

It can be a problem in an emergency, like when your 3 year old is running away from you in a very public and potentially dangerous place. Yesterday, I instinctively yelled out for her to “come right back here this minute!” The thought flowed so easily out of my mouth. Yet the words simply curdled. I was simultaneously shocked and amused (and couldn’t run fast enough after that giggling little child). If it were possible, I would have laughed out loud.

Yet there is something Zen-like about this condition. I am forced to consider my words (both in content and by sounds I can actually produce). Economy of chat. It’s like editing my written words but in real time. Even my writing feels more compact (isn’t this the shortest post I’ve ever made?).

I talk too much. I’m enjoying both this silence and hesitation. It feels very, very good.

A Fairly Odd Viral Convergence

03 Feb 2002
February 3, 2002

We are all sick. All four of us! Fevers, congestion, the whole bit. We have never all been sick at the same time. This is Viral Convergence! I’m emailing Gareth at Jargon Watch immediately about this!

It’s bad enough when my wife and I are sick. Taking care of two young children when you can barely get out of bed is bad. But dragging yourself out to take temperatures, dole out Motrin, Tylenol, Pediacare, and, finally, Nyquil is really, really bad.

horoscopeThere aren’t enough different places to lay down and watch TV for all of us! My wife just wants to sleep. I can’t watch Regis and Kelly, Oprah, or even the “lower tier” talk shows. That reality is too much for me.

I need long movies where boy meets girl and they decide to put on a show in a barn. Who’s that comedic character actress from the 30s, tall and blond, who always manages to work in the splits in any dance routine she does? Life always ends up nice and neat in her films. Never a care to worry about. That’s what I want to watch, that’s what I need to watch right now.

The kids (bless their hearts) are lethargic enough so they are at least not running around screaming and, well, being children. Their tastes run towards the Rug Rats, The Wild Thornberrys, CatDog, Arthur, Hey Arnold, and SpongeBob.

Wait a minute, those seem pretty attractive. Give me a couple of Fairly Odd Parents! Yes! That’s the Reality TV I require.

I’m Timmy and my (fairly odd) parents are Cosmo and Wanda! Timmy’s bio sounds strikingly like my childhood: “Timmy Turner is just like every other kid on Earth—totally powerless against the adults of the world! He’s smarter than most of them too, which makes it even MORE frustrating…” My alter ego is Cleft, the Boy Chin Wonder, sidekick to that superhero, The Crimson Chin!

Wait a minute, all this sort of sounds like my life NOW.

My Fairly Odd Parents help me make sense of the world. They grant me my wishes, and in the process, teach me life’s hard lessons. Most importantly, even when my path brings me to the brink of chaos, I feel like I’ve got some power in the world.

Yeah, that’s just what I need right now.

© 2001-2015 Jeff Gates ISSN 1544-4074