So many words, so little time....

Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Dragon Dreaming....

It's late, and you're tired. Nice try, but I know you are. I can see you trying to keep your eyes open by arching your brows. It doesn't help. Even Bette Davis couldn't help you keep awake much longer. I know he's out there again. I'm sorry. I know you worry sometimes, but I can't seem to keep him out.

I wish I could, both for your sake and for his. He's stuck here, you see, in a world he doesn't want and doesn't understand. No dark caves for him to slowly carve a stone couch into - our fuzzy fake carpet is his bed. No gleaming hoard for him; his treasure is tangled cords of controllers and plastic game and DVD cases and my sppons and the occaisional pile of folded laundry. Instead of fair damsels and clanking heros who smell faintly of rust he has our boistrous, sneaker-clad flock roistering around smelling faintly of Axe and that vanilla-stuff you girls wear.

You have to tiptoe around him, my child. His sleep is restless. He dreams, you see, all the time. Just ordinary dragon things, like unlimbering his wings on a new morning and climbing up onto the wind's wide back. The tips of his wings and his nose twitch, and you can see his eyes moving restlessly around under his eyelids. Playing on the inside of his eyelids there's a beautiful tapestry of crystal spun clouds splaying god-rays along a green and gold washed hills and he doesn't want to miss a bit of it.

Let him dream. We're all sort of stuck here together for now, so we might as well make the best of things. I've re-arranged the living room a bit around him, oh so quietly. It'll be easier to get around him, and you can see the screen to play your games. You go about your daily rounds, and I'll manage him. When evening comes, he'll slumber out there in the living room, and you'll slip off to your sleep with the sound of his sighs to bring you your own dreams of light-washed skies and quicksilver scales dripping cloud-dew.

Sometimes, I feel almost used to him. I've learned his ways. If he wakes, I know what to do. My armor is ready, and I'll slay him again. But even as I do, I know it will only be a matter of time before he is curled up in front of the divan again, smelling faintly of brimstone and sugar.

Don't worry, my child. It isn't for forever. Someday soon you'll grow up and fly off to your own world. That day he and I will watch you mount the sunset's rays with your own young wings. Then we'll have to figure out how we're going to handle things from there.

So speak gently, and step softly for now. It's night time and all is quiet. He's resting, and I'll get some rest too. The usual battles will start again in the morning. Until then, he slumbers. Dear one, you should sleep too.

This is part of a series I've posted on the Fray trying to walk around discussing some of the issues in my life in direct terms. As time goes on, the allegorical meaning just seems to fit more and more.

Tuesday, August 03, 2004

The Word according to Bob...

Yes, I know this is blasphemous and etc, etc. If it makes you feel better you can think of him as the patron saint of "random acts of kindness".

In the beginning, it was without form, and void. And Bob looked upon this, and saw that it was good. Unfortunately, some busybody down the street came in and decided to build a universe in there.

After looking through his building permits and realizing the interloper had it all in order, Bob stood back and watched.

Much of what he saw was good. But there were some things about this guy's design that had issues. Bob tried to make suggestions, but the guy just marked them all "Won't Fix" or "By Design" in his bug database and went on his way. He was busy, and was trying to teach the denizens of his universe some very important things and wasn't exactly rolling in time to do it.

As admirable as the goals were, it seemed very harsh to Bob. He sighed deeply, and realized that the only way things were gonna get better was if he lent a helping hand. Looking down from on high, Bob made a list, took it to the now harried builder who was busy dealing with the violent tendencies of some of his creations and a huge labor problem. The builder gave it a glance, and with a grateful look, approved the intervention.

Bob searched high and low for a proper way, and finally found some creatures with good silky fur. These he talked to, and convinced some of them that if they hung out with these others, and loved them, they would be cared for in return. And the house cat and the dog became our friends. And it was good.

Next, Bob looked around and saw that there was much toil in this world. Many creatures worked long and hard just to get by. Bob found several wonderous plants that gave all both warmth and energy. Even better, when they were mixed with other things, could be brewed into a elixir that even he grew fond of (this whole helping-the-world-thing is hard work too). And coffee and tea are very good.

Bob noticed that these creatures were always alone, it seemed. Even when they were in groups, they didn't seem to connect. They had been given beautiful feelings and the ability to tell what others were feeling sad or lonely or happy, but were lacking in ways to express them together. After experimenting, Bob realized that if the holding of the cat and the dog helped, maybe if they held each other it would help. This new way of communicating, called originally "Hugghhhh!" after an early adopter got a bit too over-enthusiastic, brought much joy to the world.

Another curious thing Bob found was that these creatures did something truly suprising. Under various conditions, they made this sort of odd sound that made them and all the others around them feel better. Intrigued and impressed by the builder's foresight, Bob found ways to help them do it more often. Some ways were better than others - the prat fall and practical jokes got rave reviews from everyone but the victim, but tickling got mixed results with anyone but babies when you blow on their tummies. Over time, Bob has found many many ways that we can all make this sound together and feel better.

Bob traveled around, completing all the items on his list. And still he travels today, adding simple comforts and companionship to the world. Some of the creatures saw what he did, and seeing that it was good, seek to emulate him. And so it spreads, and Bob sees and the builder sees, and it is good.