Friday, October 2, 2009

'Tis the Season...

According to (to which I shan't link, in order to maintain some shred of credibility), the planet Mercury -- portrayed by the astrological "planet" Mercury -- is "going direct" after an uncomfortable retrograde period. Which some wags might use as justification for the new look and my newfound willingness to toil at this Journal. "Retrograde" movement in astrology is explained as a period of time when a planet appears to be going backward in the chart possibly -- but not always -- slowing or sometimes forcing events and confusing -- or maybe clarifying -- communications.
So, then, "direct" would mean the opposite of that, then.
Astrology -- or, more commonly, "Da Horascope" -- is a Little Complicator that supposedly makes life "interesting."
"Wine Lists" are another. There's "reds" and there's "whites" and if you didn't know better, you would think that "rosés" are just the two mixed together. But there are 34,923,481 different kinds of whites and 35, 768,204 reds. I don't particularly care for rosés, so I won't even make up a number for them. I don't even see any rosés when I look out my window at the hundred acres of vineyard behind the manse, but they're there, or something like them.
If you don't imbibe, then a disinterested gum-chewing waitress mumbling through a monotonous presentation of "Today's Specials" is a Little Complicator. In the boating world, it's each ship captain's insistence on some footwear or certain beverage or no beverage at all; on TallShips™, it's the pinrail arrangement. Because you just never will know where they make off the topgallant starboard buntleechline. Or spell it, for that matter. And try doing that after a rosé or two.
Somewhere in our nature is a dependence on -- a reliance upon -- some thing that is larger than ourselves that may or may not be in control of things outside of ourselves but most certainly complicates things. Umberto Eco points at this trait when he explains the success of Dan Brown. "God isn't big enough for us" anymore, so we have to devise mysteries about the Mysteries and conspiracies that contrive to complicate the simplest variables in the human equation.
I speak for myself, of course, when I conjecture that our brains are not capable of comprehending the complexities of creation, so we simply invent cool stories. This would explain classical mythologies and also the 2008 Presidential Election.
So, go ahead, make up some complexities that make sense to you.
During October, be aware of some of the depictions of these complexities. You'll see them -- for the most part -- as candy displays. Witches and skeletons walking around. Oh wait. That's Project Runway.
Ann Miller. Uncomplicated.

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