Memories Have Many Effects

(Published 2/27/13 – equipment malfunction 2/26)

Sometimes it’s hard to brush away memories, both kinds, the good and the bad.  And, the older one gets, the more there are of both kinds.  It seems like almost anything can cause them to surface, a word, a pause in a conversation, an item that somehow came into hand or maybe didn’t.  Even if someone is working furiously at something, memory is there to give guidance toward doing it one way rather than another.  It also happens that a problem is "in study" in every which way possible because there seems to be no solution, and suddenly the mind just shuts down on the thing allowing memories (perhaps of successes) to come to the top of the thinking. 

There’s an empty plastic bag that once contained something from the deli department of a supermarket spread out on the round dish in the microwave oven.  Most often the item to be microwaved is simply something to be heated on a piece of old fashioned waxed paper.  The hot whatever tends to melt the wax onto the dish.  In time it’s thick enough to be scraped.  After years of accumulating wax, given a brand new (pretty) microwave, the idea came to put the plastic bag in and put the paper and other stuff on top of that to catch any odd drips and crumbs that fall about the dish.  It’s worked wonderfully.  And, the bag is a crunched up mess with the likes of dried coffee on it. 

The question arises, why wasn’t it thought of years ago?  And, there is a possible answer that has to do with memory.  Somewhere around 1956 it was decided that the kid should have a radio.  The why is a forever mystery, as the stories that kept people glued to radios in the 1940’s were by then in the realm of television.  Regardless, it was a nice little radio that sat around the place, sometimes seriously used, for about forty years.  Well, the microwave is from the same company.  Never is the name seen without a momentary pause, which just may be the interruption of a thinking process that was needed to allow the idea of putting something on the dish to keep it clean.   

Strange things develop when we aren’t looking.     


Too Often Things

It’s Tuesday.  Tuesday comes every week.  Lunch has been finished.  Lunch happens almost every day, although sometimes it’s necessary to run through the general time without any such thing, and sometimes one is hard pressed to call what is "lunched on" a lunch.  It’s also February, which comes regularly like Tuesday and 12:00 p.m. (noon).  A sad state of affairs exists (that’s almost perpetual), which today (and yesterday and before) includes equipment that is malfunctioning.  That has happened far too often, and valiant attempts to change the situation have failed for one reason or another also far too often.  Maybe that is the essence of modern day life for some. 

There was a topic in mind brought on by a current event in one media source.  It likewise happens far too often.  A woman went somewhere (presumably reasonably) to cash her income tax refund check.  It amounted to several thousand dollars.  She was apparently stopped and robbed including being beaten up somewhat.  It made the news because the refund was sizable.  That happens with some variations a lot, too, like paycheck rather than tax refund or man instead of woman.  The thought that came to mind was, that is something to personally fear.  The theft to some extent but especially the personal injury.  So, what do people fear the most? 

After thinking about it, it seemed like the circumstance described would be something to fear more than a lot of other things, like Wall street collapse, especially the injury part.  Once something is seriously injured, it’s never as good as it was.  A simple street theft notable only because of the amount of money taken is enough to cut short a life in some respects.  And, one only has one life.  Individualized personal injury should be one “biggest of fears” especially when it is not an accident but a deliberate act carried out by a person willing to victimize others.  And, if the equipment will hold together long enough, it’s said (again) here and now.   

Fear curtails many actions. 

Another City

Pictures, words and even to an extent sounds are just that, pictures, words and sounds, and are not "the real thing," more specifically, something you can touch, feel or maybe hold in your hand.  Sometimes what is pictured or described never did or could exist in the world of three dimensions that is around.  Sometimes even when well presented the whatever is only a hint of the reality.  One has an idea of the thing, but it is nothing more than a rather precise notion, a usable concept but very incomplete in itself.  And, once in a very great while one might, say, see a picture and have a sense of physically being exactly in that spot actually seeing what’s there. 

What brought this up is a picture in a city, apparently Boston.  The purpose of the picture was to show a part of the city in the blizzard conditions currently in the northeastern part of the United States.  It was simply a view down a commercial street from the middle of the street showing it pretty well abandoned although apparently used for a while.  Either accidentally or due to substantial technical knowledge there was a sense of actually being there.  Street pictures, snowy or otherwise, aren’t rare, but even professional ones don’t usually leave one with a sense of being there in person.  There’s no idea of where it is, and certainly the moment in time is long past. 

Powerfully historic or not, there has never been a personal yen for seeing (much less visiting)  Boston.  In fact, there’s something about just what’s been picked up here and there about it that boils down to it sounding rather unappealing personally speaking.  There are historic cities in the country other than Boston, some (like Washington) a tad more important.  A serious look at the picture conjured up the thought, "So, this is Boston; this is what they are talking about.”  It looked like a place where people lived and worked as they do many other places and a place for some serious thought rather than nonsensical activities, which is good — it promotes life. 

There are many ways to travel. 

Houseplant Life

Houseplants are living things.  All plants are, but houseplants are different from outdoors plants that tend to shift for themselves even where a gardener is employed.  Any plants qualifying as genuine houseplants are completely dependent on someone (maybe to an extent something) if they are to continue to live.  It doesn’t take a lot to keep most of them living.  There’s a need for some light, some water and a heap of dirt.  It’s best if the dirt is in a container.  The light doesn’t have to be sunlight, a table lamp can be enough.  Most any half-way decent water is okay.  Potting soil is best for dirt, but some plants can manage with almost any kind.  And people do know that. 

The four big houseplants in the old folks’ home apartment underfoot were gifts given one by one in a way wherein it was nearly impossible to turn them down.  They’re alive.  They’re living things that certainly didn’t ask to wind up where they are.  They do their bit for the betterment of society in their conversion of carbon dioxide to oxygen and provide some easy on the eyes cool green in the place, but the reason for keeping them watered is just because they are alive.  And, it isn’t that easy to do firstly because a bunch of supposed important stuff that old folks sometimes must deal with just for continued existence demand attention.   

In order to keep track of when the plants got some water, the day is marked off on a little calendar nearby.  The caretaker in this case doesn’t know "moist" soil from dry soil unless it is either mud or blow-able dust.  Sunday was the day that seemed the best day to pour on some water, but something happened that made it later and later in the day.  And, if a little time abed didn’t happen, there might be a near collapse; but, that meant getting up again, and it was necessary to be up early yesterday (Monday).  Well, they got watered near midnight.  It took several reminders of the fact that they are alive, living things.  They maybe need a new home.  …But, not yet. 

Gentle life is good.