Tag Archives: contemplation

So That’s why they call it a bundle of joy

I saw one today and it saw me.  By “it,” I mean a human child referred to as “a bundle of joy.”

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I had just spent a couple of hours catching up with a friend I haven’t seen in several years.  The weather was excellent, I felt “normal” again, like myself again.  It’s become subjective whether or not there is such a thing as “normalcy” anymore, or at the very least, it’s become much harder to depend on predictability in day-to-day life.  Yet, for a few hours on a Saturday, doing what I love doing (reading and writing at a non-Starbux coffee shop) coupled with good conversation, I was able to slip back into my preferred “default” self.  Not the self of pessimistic solitude, but that of intellectual fulfillment and ease.

After my friend and I parted ways, I had a moment with a stranger when I was walking to my car.  I noticed a motorist reversing and going the wrong way out of the parking lot, and vocalized to no one in particular, “You’re going the way, you’re going the wrong way.”

This stranger, who was sitting by a staircase and taking a smoke break, had heard me and remarked, “Oh, they don’t care, they do it all the time.”  I trotted over and inquired how many Starbux products could he buy if he had a dollar for every time he saw someone exiting incorrectly the parking lot.  A very short chat was had.  I bid him a good day and proceeded to my car.  I took the usual route back to my bachelor pad, and as I approached an intersection flanked by restaurants and other businesses not half a mile from the coffee shop, I happened to look left outside of the driver side window.

Initially, I didn’t focus on any one person having lunch on the patio…until my eyes landed upon her.  This small human with a head of brown curls, and who clearly had just learned how to stand (and probably walk) within recent weeks, was looking and pointing at me.  She was giggling too.  I whipped my head back towards the windshield to see if the line of cars in front of me had moved or not — it hadn’t.  I returned my gaze to where the little girl was standing, and her face was oozing with cheerfulness.  I waved, her dad waved, she waved, and then her mom waved…and then the cars in front of me started to move.

I have a Mashimaro sticker on the driver side door, maybe she was mesmerized by its iridescence.  Maybe she liked my sunglasses.  I have no idea why she singled me out (and from the distance of 1.5 car-lengths no less), but at least now I know why anyone would call a baby, an infant, or a young child “a bundle of joy.”  Inexplicably, I felt honored to have caught the attention of a vessel of soft tissue, blood, bones, muscle, nerve endings, tendons, and unbridled curiosity.

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Suspense Pastoral

I’ve been watching the Atlanta Braves and the Houston Astros swing it out in the World Series and noticed an element of baseball game play that I’d never before contemplated.  Compared to other team sports, the rhythm and suspense of baseball game play in relation to scoring is that no matter which team you root for, you can be more hopeful that your team can keep the lead or shrink the score gap.  There are nine innings after all.  Ninety-five minutes into a baseball game and you’re not even at the fifth inning yet.  There’s a more fluid stop-and-go of “plays” that lessens the sense of fiendish urgency to score points (in contrast to football, which consists of a much more blatant stop-and-go of plays and feeds into the o-m-g-we-are-losing energy).

Moreover, unlike the rapidly changing points in basketball, baseball’s scoring fluctuates in moderation (nevermind that the Astros took quite the lead against the Braves in Game 5 of the World Series and in a short period of time).  Though the game play is slower than that of futbol and hockey, the players have an easier time hitting balls, running bases, and making homeruns.  In other words, watch a baseball game for forty-five minutes and both teams would likely have at least one or two runs.  Watch a futbol or hockey game for the same amount of time and you’re lucky if one team made one point.

It’s easier to passively watch baseball too.  One can mute the game and knit a pair of gloves without feeling as though one is missing anything that cannot be seen on the screen.  Although I have muted Falcons’ games in the past (and other football games), there’s inevitably a part of me that wonders if something illuminating is being imparted by the commentators in relation to a play or a penalty.  Speaking of the Atlanta Falcons, they did not beat the Carolina Panthers on Halloween.  They lost 19 to 13, aka, three field goals or one touch down.  After skimming the scoring summary, it turns out that the Falcons missed a field goal in the bottom of the third quarter.  Even if they’d made that field goal, they would still be down by three points going into the end of the fourth quarter.  So, unless someone pulled a TD out of their elbow before the two-minute warning, they wouldn’t have won anyway.

Get game summary, stats, and play-by-play here.

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Pic cred: Lesly Juarez, unsplash