12 August, 2009


The 4 GREATEST words in human language are, undoubtably and irrefutably:





So much of our daily tedious lives are consumed so much by the "what", the where we're going and what we've gotten done and what we've yet to do in any given day. We rush and we careen through each day, blindly numb to the absolute wonder that simply being alive allows us to experience! So many of us fumble through every day, finding nothing but monotony when all around us there are secret lives of insects and rodents playing out tragedies that the Greeks couldn't've even begun to fathom. Each day the grass bending under the weight of a squirrel and ruffling in the new nuances of a fresh breeze is different!

And all so many of us do is go home to bask in the banal glow of the television, consuming aspartame shovelware with no analysis or reflection thereof. To me, this is a catastrophe! Sure, we've dissociated ourselves from the intricate and minute rhythms of nature and congregated in cities, but that nature still flourishes underfoot whether we want it to or not. The stubborn tufts of grass clawing out of the asphalt, the clever raccoons who persist amid our concrete monuments to our own aggrandized sense of self-worth*. Nonetheless, there is wonder bursting all around us, and all we have to do is notice it!

Too often, we're too breathless, too tired, too distracted, to find the simple awe that is captured in every bubble that the dish soap sprouts. And at the same time, we're not asking why, we're not wondering if, we're not trying to figure out how, and we're not imagining. If we let ourselves fall into this shallow pattern, then we fail the full realization of our evolutionary endowment and I wonder if we can truly say we have lived and not just merely existed.

This is all born out of the manic and inescapable conviction that if I could just crack open my mind and let you see inside, let you peer into the window of my imagination, you might understand, you might realize just how absolutely wonderful the feeling of midnight rain and the lovely contrast to a warm pillow at night is, how exquisite the sharp pang of a bit of hunger and how it sweetens one's meal may be, and just how much MAGIC exists in the world. As if I could shake you laughing like Jello until your spine was marshmallow and your mind was flooded with the brilliance of what the world is and how it came to be and how it works and what it might be someday if suchandsuch does thisorthat.

This is also wrapped up in my frustration with the limitations of language itself. I could shout "IMAGINE IT!" at you until my vocal cords tried to strangle me in protest and it would do nothing to help you realize the pure depth of the inner vision I am trying to communicate to you. There exists SO MUCH potential in the world, so much burgeoning awe that it stings to know that so many people prefer to wrap themselves up in soporific entertainment, hate, or blind ignorance.

I know that there's no such thing as ooga-booga-hocus-pocus magic, but I remain convinced that the world is thoroughly magical. All we need to do is see it.

So, tomorrow, go outside, or stay inside, or fall asleep with a tea cup over your eyes, and look in the corners of the world and of your mind. Instead of waiting to see a Wunderkammer, find your own instantly and for free. Seek out the dust bunny that reminds you of your Aunt Matry, find the chord that rings back the sweetest memory to roar back through your senses clearer than the moments it happened. Notice the glinting halo of light around the glimmering rain as it splatters across the pavement in aggregated fluid dynamics (that you're observing almost in REAL TIME!) and sing a song that only you know but will not remember in 5 minutes! Ask WHY, let yourself IMAGINE, question HOW, and wonder IF!!! And, most of all, teach it to others and spread this joy of wonder!

*That isn't a condemnation of the human ego. We have, collectively, wrought great, terrible, and beautiful things upon the face of the Earth. The decaying industrial rust towers of Detroit are exquisite in their intricacy! The rudely squatting chemical factories of Saint Louis are brilliant works of art in the loaming glint of the fading sun piercing through foggy humid air! The oil refineries of Toldeo and Maumee bellow upon the horizons, belching red underglow into Cheerio snowstorms (I once lived in Toledo across US-23 from a cereal factory), give the entire short little city a Monet-like quality! The sheer patched-togetherness of Gary, Indiana is an awe-inspiring exercise in ret-conning! And all of this has been wrought by human hands and human minds, to bend the Earth itself to our will! How is that not marvelous?


keely said...

So, um, this is completely random, but I found that post... inspiring. So much so that I'm actually resurrecting my defunct blog in the hopes that some of my babbling can be even half as... wonderful... as that.

So, um, thanks?

Toaster Sunshine said...

Not random in the slightest, I am glad my largely incohesive blatherings could affect someone positively. I shall attempt to follow your resuscitation efforts.

So, um, you're welcome!?

Science Bear said...

Is it in German that you often lay out your plots for world domination? I am thinking about learning, and would love some tips if you have any :)

Anonymous said...


If more people were this enthusiastic, the world would be a better place.

scribbler50 said...

That was not only inspiring (to say the very least) but a remarkable piece of writing, Toaster. Just "wonderful", as in the true meaning of that word.