Tuesday, March 28, 2006

View Haloo!!!

#6 has to do with ideas, or lack of them in some cases. The last couple of years I've come across some interesting bands who have unique and original sounds. I'm often bothered by my lack of originality so I like to see where others are going....then hope for inspiration. And hopefully the result is something one of a kind.

S.O.S....Just A New Box
01.06.05 (3:20 pm)

Today is the birthday of 2 men who both knew a little something about human nature and being original. Carl Sandburg once said "One of the greatest necessities in America is to discover creative solitude."

He also said "Nothing happens unless first we dream."

But the poet Khalil Gibran once wrote "Should we all confess our sins to one another we would all laugh at one another for our lack of originality."

I think the same could be said about our daydreams and many of our creative wonders. Like I said previously, I've always wanted to have creative and original entries and sometimes I suppose I do. Last night I asked one of my friends why so many songs are about love? She said she had a blog about that last year......DANG!....so much for writing about that. But why are SO many songs about love? My friend said because they (the musicians) are crap. I think she means they decided to take the lyrical low road and go along with the status quo. Is there anything wrong with singing about love? Certainly not. What more important thing is there on Earth than that!? But it's been done before. It's not original. We've all had some kind of emotional let down with a relationship, or crush, or whatever you want to call it. It took me a few minutes to come up with a song that isn't about love. The first one that came to me was Peaches by The Presidents of the United States of America. Ok, technically i guess you could say it's about the love of peaches but let's not get pitty..I mean picky. Then I thought about an old bluegrass song sung by Granpa Jones (ever seen hee Haw?). It's called Mountain Dew....that's hillbilly slang for moonshine. But there again one could say it's about the love of moonshine.

"Singin' in the Rain"?..nope...Love for being out in wet climatic conditions....speaking of climate...the predicted high for next tuesday is supposed to be 72. I think Mother Nature is going through climatic menopause.

So we sing about love, attempt to relay our jaded, depressed, joyful, lustful emotions, everyone accepts the reality that humans sing about love for those reasons, and we buy the cd's and go on with life thinking Pearl Jam was the first to do Last Kiss....what else isn't original?

Have you ever looked at a scene in a holiday geetings card, or birthday card, or a drawing in a childrens' book and wondered what if that was a reality? What if I could step into that picture and walk to the edge of the card then take one more step? What all exists just beyond what you can see? If you've ever read Lewis Carroll's Through the Looking GLass Alice is able to walk into and through a mirror into the reflected reality. I've sometimes wondered what those characters would be like in drawings if they were in a true reality. Would they have a full range of emotions other than that happy smile on their face? Or would they have a broad vocabulary and intelligence? Do they live somewhere...in a house....are there wal marts there? Are the lines at their wal marts as long as they are here? What else is there to do there? Could I step through and be enveloped by a warm, comfortable feeling of knowing everything is perfect and safe; with no worries, no bills, no evil?....no tuesday night trivia? Mary Poppins walked around in a chalk painting and went on a fox hunt....VIEW HALOO!!!!

Well, that's not original thought. But that doesn't stop me from daydreaming sometimes when I see the cover of a Dr. Seuss book or walk down the aisle of the Hallmark store at the mall. Perhaps there's an answer. I do it even though I am certain others do too; and I don't mind because it's still fun. What if we did all sit together and share our daydreams and wondering thoughts? We'd probably all laugh and agree how silly we are and how much we lack originality......but we wouldn't change a thing........it's good to dream....if we didn't nothing would ever happen.

My friend Carla Jean said one other thing....."Nothing is new under the sun" Yeah, it's all been done...it's all been done...it's all been donnnnnnne beforrrrrrrre.....aren't those lyrics to a Bare Naked Ladies song?....DANG!! that's not original either.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Meow Meow!

#7 isn't too deep or significant except that I thought it would represent the location where I used to hang out and do some "bloggin" from time to time. It was hard to concentrate sometimes, as I explained here.

Otherlands Girls
09.01.04 (6:47 am)

Some sit in the sun and others in the shade. Some lean back on the counter, others choose to lay out on the patio. The rest, the ones that like to read, find the corner sofa a nice place to stay. They all remind me of cats in their own ways. Instead of catnip they prefer coffee. New ones walk in and stroll by the others at the counter. They casually acknowledge each other by walking by and giving a brief exchange of smiles and eye contact and maybe a small hug then they move on to their own spot. Here’s one making her rounds. Checking all the tables, cleaning, making sure everything is in its place. She’s not really paying attention to anyone else, just her own business. Another one now, she can’t make up her mind where she wants to settle. Too drafty under the fan, too warm in the sun near the window. She’s moving around slowly, gliding along….ahhhh…she chose the seat near the potted plants. Cats seem to always love potted plants. Maybe they feel hidden there pretending to be like their bigger cousins who roam the wilderness. Then there’s the playful one. She works here. She’s always hyper and always looking for someone to talk to. If I only had a ball of twine or a string with a feather tied on the end I could have some fun. There are even some that nurse their babies here. Out in the open. Not caring who watches.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Rock On, Levi.

#8 comes from an incident I experienced at work one weekend. I meet some of the most interesting and friendly people there sometimes. These 2 were just the beginning.

Unbridled Enthusiasm
07.20.04 (9:02 pm)
I have a part time job at Bass Pro Shops here in Memphis where I am a sales associate in the camping department. It’s a cool job; I get to play around with all the cool camping toys. It’s midsummer now and lots of families are planning vacations so I get to see quite a few young children pass through each day. Sunday a couple came by with their 3 kids, ages between 2 and 8. Before I ever saw the family I could hear the 4 year old expressing great excitement. “OH MY DADDY LOOK!” After his introduction of overwhelming joy he would point to an item and explain to his father what exactly he was so psyched about. Quicker than daddy could say “put that down!” the little heathen would already have acquired his next target and begin to shout OH MY DADDY LOOK! And here we go again.....The 8 year old son was just the opposite....Quiet and more subdued with respect to enthusiastic eruptions. Levi was his name. Levi initiated dialogue with me by saying “hello matt.” He spoke with assertiveness and politeness not common to the contemporary 8 year old. I replied with equal etiquette and asked him how he was doing. He smiled, nodded, and said he was just fine. It appeared everything in Levi’s world was just super. “Did you know boy and girl blue jays look the same?”, Levi asked with confidence. “That’s right”, I said, “just like mockingbirds.” He concurred with a nod...”yeah I was hoping to get a bird book over there (motioning toward the gift department) but did you know it costs $17?” I replied “you like birds do ya?” “Yeah, they’re very interesting.”, he said. Then his mom called him over so we said our goodbyes. “Rock on, Levi.”. I said....well actually I said “see ya.” but in my mind I was saying Rock On! For the next 10 minutes a steady stream of OH MY DADDY LOOK! could be heard in the store. I began to think back to when I was 4 years old. I can remember being so energetic and zealous in everything I did. 4,5,6,7 years old....I don’t remember too many specific events but more like feelings. Memories of not heeding repeated parental warnings....going too far from the house, playing in the fields near the big pond when I wasn’t supposed to....climbing into, onto, over, under, and through trees, creeks, ponds, tractors, and even maw maw’s freshly planted garden. My cousin Brian and I used to jump off a wall outside the church next to the cemetery. We would wait anxiously for the closing prayer to end so we could race to see who got to jump first. We would weave through the aisles dodging hands of adults trying to slow us down. In our world there were no boundaries, no fear, and no consequences. The 4 year old reminded me of all that I have grown out of. Levi reminded me of another part of my when I was his age. A time when I began to first take a deeper interest in the outdoors what things were, what they did, and how they worked. I got my hands on every bird book and nature guide I could. That energy and unbridled enthusiasm that once manifested itself by running around getting into everything I could was now being put to use.

So, where does that inner child go when we grow up? Is it a finite existence? Or is it meant to change and added to as we mature? Could it be likened to a piece of a machine?...Something you start with and add to but is so important that without it the finished product will not function as it is meant to? I believe that it is. But I also believe that sometimes you can turn off that machine for a while and take that part out and play with it on its own....Let it out....Play in the rain, see how high you can go on the playground swing, climb a tree and talk to yourself and the ants, or even roam out past the woods up to the big pond where you can skip rocks and get your new shoes muddy. Don’t ever lose that voice that once said OH MY DADDY LOOK! Let loose with a big ole OODALALY! And roll down a grassy hill.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Cranking Out the Oldies but Goodies

#9 on my top 10 favorite blogs from the Hypolimnetic Days is a nostalgic one. Actually, a lot of my better blog topics were about my childhood or past memories. #10 was certainly in that group:

Maw-maw's Wisdom
05.09.04 (8:34 pm)
*crank....crank...crank....crank....pause....rub my forearm*.
"paw-paw, you think it's done yet?" "No, keep cranking.".."Look here, put some more rock salt over on this side...spread it out more so it melts the ice evenly." *crank...crank..crank..crank*.....5 minutes pass.. i swap hands.....*crank...crank...crank* "hey, get off me lightning bug *flick* "I better not squish him with my fingers, maw-maw said they give you blisters.".....now I'm kneeling on my other knee..the one without the big strawberry(scab) on it from sliding into 3rd base during that last ball game. Jason France told me i should have slid in head first like Pete Rose but i tried in practice oneday and didn't make it to the bag; got a good mouthful of dust though. I can't believe the coaches gave me $5 for hitting my first homerun! I can't believe I hit it either. It bounced off the top of the centerfield fence and went over. I think I was chewing gum when I swung the bat...but somewhere around 2nd base I realized it wasnt in my mouth anymore. Did I swallow it?....what did maw-maw say about swallowing gum?,,,,"It'll stay in your belly for a year, matthew!" :? I wonder when Brian's gonna get here. I can't believe he hit me the other night while pitching. He smiled when I took my base.....I think he was afraid I would have hit that weak curveball. He's the best pitcher that team has. They suck. Mcdonalds is their sponsor. Somehow all the bad talent gets on that team. Always an easy win. "Drew, get back!" No, dont eat that rock salt!" "Mommmm! Drew's eating the rock salt!! *crank.....crank...crank.....crank* I hope maw-maw doesnt see that white shoe polish I smeared on the brick wall next to the carport. The more I wiped it the more it spread! *crank...crank...crank....crank..swap hands*
Me and Brian are gonna try to catch toads tonight and feed them lightning bugs on the porch. They'll eat the bugs and you can see them lighting up inside their bellies! "I wonder if that's why toads have bumps all over them? Eating too many lightning bugs? "hey papa floyd, you think it's done yet?" Paw-paw takes a look......"No keep going...almost there, just a few more minutes." "I hope so, my arms are wore out." "Keep going, it'll make ya strong....and it's worth the work."....*crank..crank..crank...quicker!...crank..crank..crank CRANK CRANK CRANK CRANK!*......"Ok matt, I think it's done now." "Hey Brian! come here it's readyyyyy!"

I went for a walk yesterday right before dark. It was calm, not even the slightest breeze, still rather warm. almost like a pleasant summer night. I could smell someone's grill as i passed by. And I started to think about homemade ice cream. I used to be the official ice cream maker churner for the family. We didnt have one of those automatic, electronic ones. Granddad used to always say it never tasted as good as the old handcranked way. I never really knew what went in that big stainless steel cylinder but I knew what came out of it after cranking away....smooth....vanilla yellow colored, slightly lumpy goodness....MAN ALRIGHTY-O!....OODALALY!
One of those tastes that can trigger a happy emotion or memory of being that little kid who played ball all summer, caught toads and fireflies, and wandered up to the big pond to throw rocks at turtles and catch minnows with a little bent straight pen baited with a tiny ball of wonderbread. AHHHHI sure could go for some homemade ice cream right now. If anyone knows a good recipe let me know!

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

New, Yes...But Improved?

Two years ago today I began a blog, Hypolimnetic Thoughts . But, after going through a major creative slump in 2005, as well as having a lot of frustrating reliability problems with Tblog, I've decided to pack up and move to blogspot. Several of my friends use this site and seem to be quite happy with it....so here I am.
I thought a good way to introduce myself to other blogspot users would be to share my top 10 favorite blog posts from Hypolimnetic Thoughts. Today's #10 has to do with one of my favorite places......Beaumont Street, Martin, Tennessee. I sometimes wish I was still living there. So, without further ado:

The House on Beaumont Street
03.30.04 (1:30 pm)
That address has a lot of special memories to a few of us UT Martin folk. Sandra, her boyfriend/fiance/now husband Jason, Emily, and I all lived there for sometime. Emily preceeded me as a tenant there. It was a 2-bedroom house with a basement and a modest backyard. The 2nd bedroom could better be defined as a very large closet with unequal sides and a couple windows and its own tiny closet. Stuck on the ceiling were a bunch of plastic glow in the dark stars. I'm not sure which tenant put them up there, but they decided to leave them behind to bring joy and amazement to the room's future inhabitants. There are so many memories about that house..where do I begin?

I first was introduced to this house through my friend Candy. She was the current resident of the tiny room during spring and summer of 98. I ended up staying there more than in Jackson where I was supposed to be staying that summer for an internship. But my best memories really started in spring of 99 when I took my turn as "the roomie".. Sandra would cook those good meals and that awesome sweet tea. I would play with smokey their mini-dachshund, and jason would lay around and talk about movies, tv, UT vols, Emily and her goofy self, and many other interesting topics. I had a miserable job in McKenzie working at a furniture factory. Every evening when I got home I would go to the fridge and pull out a pop-ice. Each color indicated how bad my day was. BLUE--very bad...leave me alone...GREEN I shot my thumb with the nail gun only once but it didnt hurt that bad.......RED----it must be wednesday because this week is dragging along......ORANGE---ahhh....friday, I got off at 11:30!!! I dont remember what PINK and PURPLE were but I'm sure somewhere in the range of "if I have to make ONE mor eottoman I'm gonna puke!!!!"

Beaumont was host to many a celebration. Sometimes it was for someone's graduation. Once for a wedding. One really great one for halloween. And one, I cant remember what the reason was, but I ended up getting my toes painted by Emily...that's actually my first real memory of MLE....waking up to see her painting my toes pink.....I told her if she's gonna do it..gimme a manly color..metallic green I think. Sandra still has that picture stashed away for blackmail purposes I think. Each party would end with jason getting a picture taken of his Harem on the couch. All the girls would pile onto the couch with him in the center...say cheese!! (insert middle finger and goofy smirk here). I dont know much about the basement other than it smelled kinda funny, had a wet floor, and that's where the laundry machines were.

I remember when the time came to move out. Jason and Sandra got married and moved to clarksville and I was the last person in the house. All of the furniture was gone...trash was laying around in the corners...empty, autographed bottles still filled the cabinets. It felt like I was in some classic sitcom where one of the characters walks around and reminices about the good ole times of a home or hang out and hears the echos of all the people who once were there.....sandra complaining about someone she doesnt like on real world, jason yelling when some wrestler gets slammed to the mat on monday night RAW, smokey and all the other dogs barking at the door whenever someone knocks....the smell of spaghetti or pork chops....loud music blasting.....me doing dishes....ahhh...those were the days. when I packed my stuff up I left a few of those stars on the celing in that tiny bedroom......I wonder if they're still there?