The Fitful Flog

January 19, 2009

Normal Has Nothing to Teach

Our friend and unindicted co-conspirator, origamijoel, said that to me recently and it sounded immensely wise.

Joel is a soft-spoken man with an air of affable gravitas and he often says things that strike me as being immensely wise. It’s just his way. When we were sitting on the concrete on 27th Street this past June, Joel said, “Try the hummus, it’s very good.” And it was — but then I thought, Does he mean the hummus Jane just got at the store? Or does he mean the Hummus of Life? I nodded. Yes, the Hummus of Life is good, but what does this make the pita chips? Truth? Amity?

Such thoughts are difficult for me — casual introspection is a two-edged blade and as such, is illegal in Massachusetts.

Kaki Self-lock Pentagonal Tato Box

This  is a tato box I made, using some of Nakao Takeda’s ideas about kaki self-locks. A certain Swiss miss (no, not that one) reminds me today that I shouldn’t get bummed out to find I didn’t actually invent the lightbulb. Who invented what is always somewhat up in the air. (Nikola, am I right?) And art is not, after all, a freakin’ contest — we’re all just trying to spread the joy. Sometimes, that takes time. Sometimes, it takes thinking other people’s thoughts — it’s okay, they always come out differently. Here’s a crease pattern.

Kaki Self-lock Pentagonal Tato Box

Did I mention that Joel has an Etsy shop? Well, I probably should then and the prices are darned reasonable. (Without Bacchus and Ceres, Venus gets a little chilly, tell you what.)

Anyway, there I was, sitting on the concrete with Joel and Jane, munching and folding and thinking, Yes, yes, the Kalamata olives are the bitterness and the richness of our Western heritage. The Medjool dates represent the sweetness of the opinions in the Babylonian Talmud or maybe they’re Omar Khayyám’s algorithms…. And then some zaftig young ladies in Brasilian football jerseys walked by, hooting and whooping. Was it for the world cup or for gay pride? I forget, but either way, I got distracted.

In the grand scheme of things, the pita chips are probably ourselves, but you know, the Hummus of Life is so very garlicky, that we should all eat it or none of us should.

One Response to “Normal Has Nothing to Teach”

  1. 1
    Joel Says:

    Jane says the hummus is just food, Philip. And I say the pita chips are just a fancy-schmancy hummus delivery system. You’re overthinking again; eat. Oh well, that’s why we love you.
    And thanks for the bump. Jane tells me she would knight you, had she the proper connections. You are indeed the last cavalier.

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