A coworker of mine misspoke the word vicariously and said vicarelessly (vie careless lee), and we decided that it means to experience something through another’s actions, but not care about the outcome.
You know that moment in ET where he’s dying. He’s turning white and all shriveled and he’s hooked up to all sorts of medical equipment and none of the adults in the room seem to know what to do. And during this time Elliot seems to be dying too, he’s feeling the same things ET is going through, and you suddenly realize that Elliot and ET have grown connected since they met. You think back to all the signs from earlier parts of the story; they experienced the same drunkenness, heroics, romance, and happiness. When ET started to get sick, so did Elliot. They feel each other’s pain. They’ve become inseparable such that Elliot almost dies* along with ET before he can recover. That’s what losing a spouse to cancer feels like. Or at least that’s what its felt like to me.
* Not in need of any support, just wanted to share the observation. If you haven’t seen ET since you were a kid, you should see it again.
Took the kids snowboarding in VT today. We all put one of those ski tracker apps on our phones. After a few runs we checked them out and had this conversation:
The 20 year old: Huh, according to this I was going 43 MPH.
Me smugly: Well I was doing almost 45 MPH.
The 16 year old:, I was doing 54 MPH!
Me: OK let’s rein this in a little, you don’t even have a driver’s license!
This is the story of how Laura had Calamari for the first time. Laura and I had been dating for about a year when we decided to take a weekend trip to Block Island. We went in April, off season. We had the place to ourselves, but not much was open. We had no car, so we were limited to what we could walk to from the port. We stayed at a local inn, and by Sunday afternoon, we had exhausted out options, and had nothing left to do but wait for the return ferry. We had just five dollars left, and needed to eat lunch. There was just one place open, a small seafood joint. We sat down and perused the menu. A calamari appetizer was the only thing we could afford, so I asked her, “do you want to split a plate of fried calamari?”
“Sure!” She said. The waiter came over and we placed our order, and when he left she asked me, “what’s calamari?” You see, Laura was just barely out of the desert and not exactly experienced in the world of seafood.
“It’s squid.” I said.
“Well I’m not eating that,” she said…in her head. Throughout our lives Laura has always had a had a habit of talking to me in her head, sometimes not realizing she wasn’t talking out loud.
Some time goes by and out comes the meal. If you are familiar with this dish, it comes in two parts, there’s the obviously squid parts that are the breaded and fried tentacles, and there’s the not so obviously squid parts that are the tubular body sliced up in to breaded and fried rings.
I dig in, tentacles first, and encourage Laura to start. “I’m not eating that,” she said in her head. “I’ll just have some of these onion rings.” And that is how Laura tried fried squid for the first time.
My bias showed itself today. I was doing a crossword puzzle and the clue was “sympathetic case”. I put “poor slob” because I had some of the first letters, it fit, and made sense. It jumped easily to mind and I heard it in my head in the voice of Daffy Duck. Bug and Daffy often described some unfortunate character as a poor slob, and I believe it was common language from the 40s.
Well as it turns out the answer was “poor soul.” So not only am I predisposed to seeing those in unfortunate situations as slovenly, but also I am unlikely to see a supernatural essence at a person’s core.
My teenager just said, “I may have to get on Instagram because it’s the only way Gen Z keeps in touch.” I thought I knew all his friends, but couldn’t figure out who this Jenn Z was.
I keep seeing images on the web that say, this is art and this is not. Though when I see them, I am less likely to think about the nature of art, and more likely to see Simon & Garfunkel in my head.
My seven year old talks non stop, sometime I’m not really listening. Today he was going on about Banana Robots. I asked my wife if she knew what he was talking about, “Oh, we talked about nanobots today.”
I was so focused, I was dialed in. But then I got lazy and phoned it in.
Here’s an example of what those statues could look like: