Tuesday, January 17, 2012

weird, weird times.

I think I'm entering/have entered a very contemplative time in my life.

It's not the first and it won't be the last, but when they happen there's no telling how long they'll stay or what I'll learn.

It's always a little weird, to be honest. The other night at the bar, over fries and beers, I started crying while trying to explain a book I'm reading to a friend's boyfriend I'd never even met before. Hello, freakshow.

During these times I feel everything very acutely and I'm incredibly emotional all. the. time.
Not a sad emotional, just moved. It's as if everything and anything could have the power to move me.

It's strange. I don't exactly dread these phases, but I'm not jumping for joy to start weeping as I consider how everyone perceives a certain patch of road differently, either.

Speaking of perception, this is taken from one of my new all-time favorite reads, Anthropology of an American Girl, and it touched me so deeply that I've been thinking about it for days. I even read this passage out loud to Matt on the way home from Cleveland yesterday so that we could discuss it.

 Bless his soul for humoring my fragile state of being. (I'm a nerd, through and through.)


         "Actually," Dan said, "I was just thinking about qualities that are essentially incommunicable, like color. For instance, take roses. Kate and I can both call a rose red, though I might see coral and she might see pink."
         "Do you mean color blindness?" Kate asked 
         "Not exactly," he guided gently. Dan was always gentle with Kate. At parties he would dedicate songs to her, or he would write compositions called "Kate 9" or "Kate 16." "My point is that it's impossible to know what I see matches what you see when we both say red. Comparisons of redness aren't possible. Redness is ineffable: it has to be experienced to be known. "

         "Big deal," Jack said. "Perception is variable. If you perceive a speeding car to be forty feet away when it's really four feet away, and I perceive it to be four feet away, I'll jump, and you'll get hit. Relative perception doesn't change the position of the car, and it's doesn't affect the color of a rose. The rose doesn't care what color you think it is." 

        "I'm not saying that physical absolutes don't exist, " Dan said. "You're right-the rose is the color it is. I'm saying that absolute perception doesn't exist. That no one interpretation is more valid than another. Like redness, or jazz, or--"

        "Nationality," I added, "Or race."

        "What's your point, Daniel?" Jack wanted to know.


"Art doesn't have to be held accountable to accuracy, and there's no one right way to look at things."

(Pages 142-143) 

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