Wednesday, May 30, 2012
Lizards and stuff
It's been on my mind for years. What is that little pink thing that sticks out of a lizard's (gecko's) neck? I've wondered this for most of my life, which may at first give you the impression that I have no life. Whenever I see a lizard crawling up the window sill on my back porch I wait like my 5-year old waits for the approaching ice cream truck to stop. I wait for the lizard to pause, look at me curiously, and then bob his little head up and down until that little pink thing protrudes from his little neck. After a moment of head bobbing, it disappears to who knows where. Then he goes about his business as usual, oblivious to my presence and my sense of total fascination. What just happened? Was he (or she) communicating with me? Was he showing off like a peacock shows its tail? Was he threatening me? Was it a sign of affection? Makes me wonder. I could "Google" this or ask on Facebook and find out exactly what it means. I could Tweet. I don't want to. I don't want to know the "truth". I prefer to leave it to my imagination; it serves me well. I can interpret this odd behavior as a sign that, in the eyes of the lizard, I am a worthless human being. That is, of course, if I've had a bad day. I can just as easily see it as a sign of love and affection. That's for a good day. If I knew what it really meant then that all goes out the window. I prefer to leave it be.
Same with the songs that I've never known the words to. I remember the disappointment I felt when I learned that the "Go-Go's" song that I sang in the shower was not called "As long as I see you". It's "Our lips are sealed". Bummer. There's a commercial that plays on this. They use "Rocket Man". They show people singing the words as they have always believed them to be. At the end, you find out that the line is "burning out his fuse up here alone". What???? It's not "burning up the sea of heaven" (pronounced heh-eh-vaughn). I used to ponder what those mysterious words meant. Sea of Heaven. Wasn't there something about that in the Bible? Rocket Man went to the sea of heaven. It's a song about Jesus or something. Wow. No. It's a song about a very lonely man in space. I like my Rocket Man better.
They say that "Psycho" is the scariest movie ever. Show it to a 15 year old and they'll laugh out loud. Why? Because now, the horror flicks show it all. Blood, bodies, etc. Psycho was so scary because during that shower scene, you never really got to see the "killer". You didn't see all of the gory stuff. Its mostly left to your imagination. And imagination pales in comparison to anything they show you on the screen.
I think this way about fear. I have learned in my years (not that I am an old man or anything), that when I am afraid of something it is usually a figment of my imagination. I can conjure up the worst of scenarios. The plane will go down. The lap bar on the roller coaster will disengage during the ride. The ship will sink. If I were to give in to all of that then I would never fly, ride, or sail. Gee, what I would miss. Not all fear is imagined. It is the body's natural defense mechanism that can get our guard up when necessary. I am afraid of tornadoes. I hide from them (in the bathtub). I don't chase them. I've seen the movie "Twister" so I know what can happen. I have to think that most of what I fear is being conjured up in my own little brain. Fear of public speaking; no one will listen, they'll laugh, they'll think I'm stupid. Fear of commitment; what if it doesn't turn out "right", what if I'm surprised by what happens, what if it's not a good fit for me. Fear of failure; I'll look ignorant, I'll have egg on my face; I'll never get another chance. Most of that kind of stuff comes directly from my imagination. It can keep me from living into who I am. It can keep us from understanding other people. It can keep us from seeing ourselves, and one another, for who we really are. Think about it.
I looked it up. Dad gummit I went and looked it up. That little pink thing? It's a neck pouch. It can be shown as a sign of agression. It can be a sign of fight, flight, or flatter. In other words, who knows? So, turns out I can still imagine whatever I want to imagine. But a lonely Rocket Man all alone in outer space? Still like mine better.