“There are certain queer times and occasions in this strange mixed affair we call life when a man takes this whole universe for a vast practical joke, though the wit thereof he but dimly discerns, and more than suspects that the joke is at nobody’s expense but his own. … And as for small difficulties and worryings, prospects of sudden disaster, peril of life and limb; all these, and death itself, seem to him only sly, good-natured hits, and jolly punches in the side bestowed by the unseen and unaccountable old joker.” Moby Dick, Chapt. 49, by Herman Melville (1859)
I know that Melville here was talking about the effect that those people risking life and limb come to experience in the height of danger; the “free and easy sort of genial, desperado philosophy” that life-threatening experiences engender. But even without physical danger there have been times — often in the midst of psychological or emotional tribulations but sometime even when all is well with the world — that I have had that feeling that the Universe is some Great Joke… And that the joke is on me.
It’s not necessarily a bad feeling. After all, I don’t mind being the butt of a joke… As long as it’s a good one.
But maybe it’s more than that. Maybe those times where you feel that everything is a joke is a faint understanding of how infinitesimally small everything you experience, think, feel and perceive actually matters in the grand scheme of things. That’s not to say that we are unimportant. But when you put our individual lives beside the Universe as a whole, how laughable and ludicrous it is to think that whatever is going on in our lives is the be all, end all of… of anything.
It really is quite funny when you think about it. No, really. Let’s think about it for a moment. Consider the three images I have included in this post’s header image… Continue reading The Great Joke
Well a guy came to get my old Nissan Pathfinder today. I know it’s just a car, an inanimate object… But it was a little like saying goodbye to an old friend. I had that car for 18 years…
I got the car just after I got my last dog, Buddy. I remember when I took Buddy for his first drive in it as a puppy. It started to rain, and when I turned on the windshield wipers, he started to bark at them as they went back and forth. 🙂
I bought the Pathfinder new, shortly after I got out of the Navy. I was working as a photo copier repair guy, my car was my office, and I had to carry a bunch of parts & tools around with me. I had a small Saturn sports coupe and had just spent a winter driving it to clients’ business all over downtown Denver and the Denver Tech Center. I decided I needed something with more carrying space and that could handle winter driving better. Continue reading Goodbye, Pathfinder…
To an Introvert, people are just weird… Ourselves included…
Had my annual physical this morning, so after being poked and prodded I was really looking forward to relaxing over a late breakfast at the Egg & I. It was delicious. As soon as I sat down however, I was continuously talked up by a grey-bearded stranger maybe a decade older than I in the booth adjacent to mine.
Got the day off work today, and slept in a little this morning. I had removed a box fan from one of my apartment windows, and I was just standing looking out the wide open window enjoying the view when I noticed some birds. On the far side of some tennis courts on the school grounds that neighbor my apartment complex, I saw two big blue jays and a larger black bird I could not identify.
Curious, I got out my binoculars and checked the trio of birds out. The mysterious stranger was just a big crow. The hyper-territorial jays had probably been harassing it, and now they were all just resting on top of the tennis court fences eyeing each other warily.
The “Journal” category of this blog is mostly just to provide me, (the site’s owner,) with a convenient link to my personal journal posts. As such, (unless you happen to be me,) you won’t see much here, as I suspect I won’t be making many of my journal posts public. Any thing from here that I might deem worth public consumption will probably be added to other categories as well.
But then again, you never know. I may mark something else visible to the public in here every once in a while, just to see if I can sneak one by my non-existent followers…