Tuesday, August 19, 2008


The very first time I drew a magic card, it was the weasel; and, no, the weasel is a very good and powerful card; we have given them the bad attributes that they do not deserve. So, it was fitting that one crossed my path on my drive home from Connecticut. Now, I'm using the word 'weasel' in the family/genus sense, because weasels themselves are little. So I had to google all animals in the family, and have decided that it was a fisher. Upon further investigation, I discovered that a group of weasels is called a boogle, which tickled my funny bone, or, sometimes, a confusion--a confusion of weasels. I have always liked a 'murder' of crows, and an 'ostentation' of peacocks, but this confusion thing fell right into my gut.

There are of course several monikers we could apply to groups of humans--an 'ignorance' of humans, or my current choice, and 'arrogance' of humans. However, it is inherently clear to me, that despite our arrogant claim to be atop the food chain, we do not fully buy into our own haughtiness. Otherwise, we long ago would have come up with less boring choices than the specious 'community' or 'group'. Imagine if we were really good enough to refer to ourselves as an 'uncondition' of humans, or perhaps a 'benevolence' of humans.

The question was recently posed to me, "What if animals were smarter than people?". The answer is not easy. Despite our anthropomorphic tendencies to attach 'human' qualities to animals, deep down we know that they are smarter than us. During a recent conversation with a squirrel, I learned that most animals refer to us as 'a cluster of dangerous things'.
So, I am led to posit the question, "What's it all about, Alfie"?

Today, the answer carries some clarity for me, and it all starts with the boogeyman. The boogeyman is a global phenomenon, brought on to assure that our children carry the same fears that we adults do; fear of life, fear of the unknown, fear of difference. There is clearly a monster hiding under all our beds, in all our closets, and as we grow older, we forget that he is powerless beyond the realm of our imaginations. Oh sure, in some cultures, the boogeyman eats children who are bad, but I have never read an article in the NY Times about a confirmed boogeyman attack.

Which leads me to the real point of this story-one of the differences between paths and journeys. The only surefire way to defuse the boogeyman is to follow a path. Paths always have an end, a destination. It might lead to the accumulation of wealth, spiritual enlightenment, or Ben and Jerry's. It doesn't really matter. The end of the path is the 'getting there', the place where we fearlessly headed, our nirvana and our Cherry Garcia. But the satisfaction and happiness associated with ends of paths is fleeting, a flicker in the cosmic light bulb, and it goes out faster than a birthday candle.

So, we put our children on their tricycles and send them on a path toward Jesus, or Buddha, or Allah, or Benjamin, and offer them the false promise of paradise. Go out, and do not be afraid, because (fill in the blank) is with you, protecting you, carrying you to heaven.. Well, fuck that.
Fuck that whole original sin bullshit. Children know good from bad, they are born with that knowledge. They know that good and bad are found in play and wonder, innocent and sinless. You know it, I know it--there is no hell in playing.

Journeys are all about play, and they have no final destination. Each moment is filled with its own discoveries, and you never know what the next moment will bring. Journeys are all about possibilities. We need not be afraid of unknown possibilities, because the journey will continue. Something great one moment, something bad the next, but there will always be another moment on a journey. On a journey, you always find the joy in what you never knew. You can be forever amazed. You can never really find anything unless you embark on a journey. You can't like, or love, or be afraid.

My next moment may bring the end of my life. It may not. But it will bring something I can play with, something to amaze me. My journey will eventually end, but not in this joyous moment, not right this second.

So dear reader, there are choices to be made. Two options really. Journey on, dude, or join the 'confusion' of humanity.


Anonymous said...

you have been away. me too. hiding. from him.

i can't find andy or gail either. they ran away together. they felt like family.

keep writing. i find answers to questions you aren't even aware are being asked.

better that way. i think. can't be any bulls___, right?


Fallen angel said...

I will keep writing. Nice to have you back. Andy and Gail have run off to Gail Blogland

Anonymous said...

I had fun reading this and ir gave me something to think about, too. Not a bad day when you can do both of those things at the same time.

And, the pic of the baby in the sidebar. What a hoot! Odd thing is, I think that baby means it. Is that you?


You might enjoy the little quotation toward the bottom of my sidebar (on "play and work"). Or you might not. (snigger)

Gail said...

Hi Fallen Angel,

Good writing. I agree with the paths and journeys. I am tired. There is a path I am on with someone that is complicated. It is part of a long journey. For me the journey may end when this part of the pathway concludes. Some times when someone changes or they do something that is simply wrong it is hard to journey with them any more.
I want it to be "not so", I want it to be "safe" again and I don't think either are possible. And yet I pretend so to not shatter their delusional reality. Others will be hurt too.
It was hard to comment on this writing because it made real this cross road. A cross road I keep avoiding.

So in your writing about paths and journeys, - in real time how does it work? If out of fear one keeps avoiding the cross road?

You say you write so your readers can ponder. I am. You say you offer and your readers receive. I received.
Now what?

Anonymous-Jenna? Nice to see you have a name. And what of the 'him' you mentioned from whom you are hiding.
Andy has been on vacation for a week.We haven't run away. And I will take the "family' thing as a compliment. Thanks.

nite to all

Gail said...

Fallen Angel et al

Thank you F A for the conversation about the above situation. Your insight, advice and honesty helped, a lot.

I was quite cryptic in my writing. Sorry. And now you know what it is and not what you thought.(which I cannot believe you thought) - eesh.
peace and good thoughts and 'promises'.


Anonymous said...

it's jenna
hi fallen angel. glad you will write on.

gail-the him you ask about is an angry man. i deal with him. i know when to hide and when i can be seen. sometimes the lines cross. then like fallen angel wrote i am on a path and it will end. i found hope in that.

i think you are running or hiding or maybe stuck. but what do i know.


Gail said...

Hi F A, jenna and whomever

Jenna- I like your reference to the path and knowing it will end which gives you hope.

As far as me running? hiding? stuck? - none of those. I am "caught". Caught between a 20+ year conviction of how to deal with something and being challenged by some one I trust to look at a different way. It has turned me upside side down and inside out.

I will find hope knowing that this is a path off the beaten path, literally, which will end.

I am cryptic again, I know. Sorry.