OXYMORONIC NORMS

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OXYMORONIC NORMS

 “No one goes to that restaurant anymore – it’s always too crowded.” Yogi Berra.

(a) Honest opinion

(b) Experience is the best teacher.

These two contradictory phrases, impossible though they appear, may very well be a precise definition of a behavioral tendency toward littering the language with oxymoronic detritus.

Good grief, I hope this doesn’t mean that my creative flow of great ideas is growing smaller.

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“Knock, knock knockin’ on heaven’s door…”

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Sheriff: Who are ya?

Printer’s monkey: Good question.

If I had been reading the script I would have read that answer and said to myself, “Bob Dylan”.

Of course, I’ll never know that for sure because  only seconds before, I had clicked the TV on-switch and seen Bobby’s silly self grinning at me there on the screen.

As for the Dylanesque answer to the question “Who are ya?” , I can imagine none better than “Good question.”

We are at any given time a work in progress; perhaps as we leave the planet we will know, too late to answer, as we go…

“Knock, knock knockin’ on heaven’s door…”

HOLLYWOOD HALLOWEEN MONKEY MAN

 

Walking toward me from the opposite end of a city-block-long hallway which connected the clinics to the Veterans Hospital was a short, bow-legged fellow aided by  a tall, gnarly staff; he was wearing some truly, grubby jeans as though he had read that op-ed piece about wearing your Levis a year between washing; he wore a calf length pea-coat made in another century for a much larger veteran and mid-calf length boots, all scuffed and dirty with the laces undone, leaving the tops of the these puddle sloshers  flapping against each other as the arc of those cowpoke legs met again at the ankles. His hairy face and wrist were all that showed of this guy but that was enough. I now could see that this guy was a chimp.

He had twinkly, piercing blue eyes that were like lasers firing away from that hairy face. He wore a backwards-turned ball cap like that fellow Satch from the old Bowery Boys movies of the thirties; it was a chimp as in anzee (rhymes with pansy).

He didn’t look like one of those Hollywood Halloween Monkey Men from the Planet of the Apes series either; this ape was the real deal.

As Mr. Ape-man and I closed the gap between us I noticed someone else near the focus of my attention, a photographer approaching from behind; why would he want a photo of a cane-assisted ape taken from behind?

As the camera flashed from behind his raggedy self another came from behind me at exactly the same time. The cameraman from behind the ape apparently wanted a picture of me. Or was the photographer behind me after the other character?

There was an opportunity to turn right and follow the arrows to an exit which is exactly what I wanted to do. My wobbly old body needed rest. My osteoporotic legs were so bent out of shape that I would soon need a walker.  I trudged another twenty feet or so and then stopped for a moment before moving out to the parking lot. Curious, I turned around for one last look and discovered that the ape-man and the photographers had disappeared from sight. As I stood there scratching my face which hadn’t been shaved in a week or so I noticed that the never-ending hallway had fooled me; there was a floor to ceiling mirror at that end.

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FEALTY TO SELF AND TO OTHERS

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Offering one’s sense of self in exchange for the approval linked with conformity to the agreed-upon beliefs of any given group encourages paralysis of creativity among individuals and discourages growth within the groups to which we pledge fealty. The anticipated rewards are stability and a heightened measure of safety.

Our decision on the matter probably occurred during childhood; some say before our second birthday. The rest of our life will be spent learning to live with our decision and using this information to guide us as we mingle with others.

RELEVENCE

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I was watching a captivating video minutes ago, detailing the “TRUTH” about mankind’s existence.

Suddenly, it occurred to me that I was listening to someone tell me what to think. “What to think?” I said to myself and I ended the voice of “WHAT?” and pulled up an empty word document; I began to think about “HOW?”. I had already discovered most of the information that I had heard described on the video.

As the speaker had begun to describe some compelling ideas which minutes ago I could not have claimed as “My Information” and as I had stopped the identifiable flow thereof, I began to wonder how much of my life as a discoverer, as the pathfinder that I have always thought myself to be, was now gone. Had part of me died? Had I perhaps grown into something better? Are either of these questions relevent?

HAIRCUTS AND DIETS: THE THEORY OF WINNING BY LOSING.

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HAIRCUTS AND DIETS: THE THEORY OF WINNING BY LOSING.

 
HAIRCUTS

Barber: how much do you want me to take off?

Barbee: Just leave 1 ½ inches all over.

Barber: Okay but how much do you want to cut off?

Barbee: How long is it now?

Barber: (measures hair.) 4 inches here and 3 inches over here and 1 ½ over her around the ears.

Barbee: Okay so remove 2 ½ inches here, 1 ½ inches over here and don’t cut around the ears.

Barber: That’s too difficult, how long do you want it to be?

Barbee:  Just leave 1 ½ inches all over.

Barber: That’s better; you shoulda said so in the beginning.

 

 

 

DIETS

Dieter: I weigh 200 lbs. I am 5’10” and I want to get to down to 160 lbs.

Nutritionist: You are consuming 2000 calories daily. I want you to start eating 1500 calories daily.

Dieter: At 3500 calories a pound it’ll take me 40 weeks to lose the fat.

Nutritionist: Actually, if all you do is diet, much of the weight loss will be muscle.

Dieter: I want to lose weight and I want to do it in half the time. And I don’t want to lose any muscle.

Nutritionist: Great, so let’s add a five-mile jog every morning; that should do it.

Dieter: This is getting too hard. I can’t do what you ask.

Nutritionist: Have you ever successfully reached your desired weight and kept it off for more than a month?

Dieter: No.

Nutritionist:  Okay, I have a better method. Do the 1500 calorie diet and exercise for fifteen minutes, four times a week. How does that sound?

Dieter: Great. How long is this for?

Nutritionist: The rest of your life. The 1500 calories is what you should have been eating all along for someone your height and level of activity. You’ve been trying to win by losing. Commit for life and you will become successful.  By the way, I can recommend a really great barber. You have very long hair, you could lose a pound with a good haircut; Just tell him to cut everything down to 1 ½ inches.