Have I found the tools that are toys? Are instruments both? When I sit down to work with my keyboard and the rhythm of the finger strikes remind me of music, am I playing?
If I enjoy the process to the point of complete pleasurable absorption, is it still work? The camera snaps of yesterday brought this out. Finding images that represent the city I’m in while holding my camera phone, and wondering if it was a tool.
I was smiling. The plant before me showed such vibrant life. Out of abundant growth it had fallen from the wall it called home, curling around itself, and I felt an urge to clip it, reproduce it, grow it, share it, and spread it.
I’ve always loved honeysuckle. It will climb across an arbor, work its way onto a roof, and begin to tear the roofing off by taking root under and through its layers. Blackberries and Morning Glory will do the same thing. Penetrate a wall making their way into your living room by pulling the structure apart, in wills to thrive.
What sets it apart from the weeds for me, is the sweet smell of the blossoms, like Jasmine or Clematis, it can make an undesirable looking patio a wonderful place to be, if you close your eyes, and just use your nose.
This is San Diego to me. Life forms coming together in a celebration of perfect perpetual summer, piping in water, and thriving in a desert.
Personally I love to work with the maintenance of the device, and always have. To me a fishing pole brings back fond memories of failures. Big balls of knots wrapped with hooks. A snagged line that took more time undoing, than the fishing expedition itself. Kinked out spools that need unwinding….funny how a kite does the same thing.
In Costa Rica, the line and a lure was all that was needed. By throwing the weighted cordage into the surf, a meal flopping in the sun was manifested.
I hope to do that with my writing. With regular maintenance, untie all the knots in my heart lines, put something shiny on it to fix myself, and in the process I help others see the potential to do that for themselves.
One of my friends, a fellow teacher, a colleague, and another kid at heart Jesse, told me a name that brought me joy, for a piece of gear. He calls it a “Skid Lid”, or Brain Bucket”. To the rest of us it’s a helmet….or hard hat. I call an instrument. I love them. They’re armored hats, allowing me to run, crawl, jump, ride, be wild, and stay safe….at work play.
Sometimes out of hope for play, I joke that the best thing I could do to avoid road rage would be to put on a helmet, clip my seat belt, turn up the music, sing loudly, and swerve just enough, that the other drivers will give me healthy space. I suppose that’s the bicyclist in my heart, still hoping to survive the roadways. I could call it my “Faith Hat”. Draw a bunch of symbols and words on it that bring me a feeling of serenity, and drive like a chauffeur.