On a beautiful day such as today, when the sun cheers the bright winter sky, I will generally go outside. Today however I am staying inside. Whether to go out or stay in used to be a difficult decision, until I realized that the outside and the inside are the same, that whatever differences there may be, they are of no consequence. Perhaps tomorrow I will go out, or perhaps tomorrow I will stay in. I will regret my decision, either way, as I always regret my decision, whether I stay inside or I go outside.
I check my phone but there is no new message. In a minute or two I will check my phone again, and there will either be a new message or there will not be a new message. If there is no new message I will be disappointed, but if there is a new message I will feel the discharge of electricity, the chemical stimulation that attends the arrival of every new message. This is why I check my phone every minute, or at the very least every two minutes: for the surge of electrical excitement that I feel whenever a new message arrives. The last six times I have checked my phone, over the past ten minutes, there has been nothing but disappointment. From a statistical point of view I am likely to receive a message any minute now. The odds favour it, I believe. So the thrill of anticipation mounts. Any second now it will be time to check my phone. Don’t ask me how I know when it is time. I simply know, or rather, my body knows. I feel the moment is near, physically, along the nerves. This is the best way I know to describe it, as a thing involving the nerves. Now the moment is closer. It approaches. The thing is undeniable, unstoppable, inexorable. It could be as close as the next breath. In any case it is not far off. Imminence is the word I would use, and there, I have used it. I breathe and …
… it is time! I press the large round button, and the screen lights up. I swipe to the right. I enter a pass-code. I press the Mail icon. I wait…
…there is mail!
From: NISSHIN STEEL CO…
Subject: I wish you to represent my company in north America/Canada.
I wish you to represent my company in north America/Canada.
Once again I am disappointed, just as I was disappointed minutes ago when there was no new mail, and minutes ago when there was no new mail, and minutes ago when there was no new mail, and minutes ago when there was new mail, and minutes ago when there was no new mail, and minutes ago when there was. And so on. The anticipation mounts. In a minute, there may be a new message. I will check. There may not be a new message, but there may also be a new message. The only way to know for sure is to be vigilant, at all times. To not check is to be disappointed, whereas to check is also to be disappointed, most likely.
My phone is ancient. It is at least a year old. Soon I will throw it out and purchase another. The new phone will look exactly the same as this phone, but perhaps a slight bit larger or a slight bit smaller. If it is a slight bit larger, then I will celebrate the innovation, whereas if it is a slight bit smaller, I will revel in the welcome improvement. As long as the new phone is not the same size as the phone I have discarded, and that I ache to discard, I am happy. Or, it may in fact be the same size, and I will celebrate, provided the new phone differs in some small way from the old phone, by having slightly more of something, or slightly less of something.
I check my phone now in anticipation of the news that there is a new phone available for me to purchase and discard, and that this new phone has slightly less, or it may be slightly more, of something that my current phone has, I don’t care which.
No such news has arrived. I am disappointed.
I struggled a long time before I decided to vote for Mr. Crusher. Why did I choose to vote for him? Because, quite simply, he promised change. A wonderful word, change. It means that the things that are will become different things. Something that for a long time was one way will now and henceforth be another way. Who has not at some point in life tired of something, and wished it were another thing, another type of something? I happen to think that the grape is a tedious bore, but if it could be a cantaloupe, that would be marvellous. This however begs the question of what to do about the cantaloupes; for if we simply leave them be, the world will be just as it was, only with less grapes and more cantaloupes. That’s still a change, let’s be fair, but hardly a momentous change. Perhaps some of the cantaloupes could be made into string, and others daughters-in-law, and others camels, and others yet whisk brooms.
I owe a debt of gratitude to Mr. Crusher, for opening a window onto the world of change. When I heard him speak the word change, I knew what my choice of president must be. I knew I must vote for Mr. Crusher, and for change, just as I knew also that I would soon regret it.
No matter. The time to vote will come again, and soon enough. And I will vote, once again, for change, as I have always voted for change, every time for change, ever since I was old enough to vote.
I have worked out the most efficient way to ensure that there is change, by alternating my vote, in turn voting for the progressive candidate, who moves things forward, and then in turn for the conservative candidate, who moves things back. In other words I alternate back and forth, casting a vote for progress followed by a vote for conservation, every four years an alternating. The progressive candidate improves the situation by liberating us from the terrors of the past, while the conservative candidate improves the situation by restoring the lost glory of the past. To be clear, I’m unable to tell the difference of the periods of progress from the periods of conservation, but these are the options, and I embrace them both, as I have always embraced them. As I always will.
O-ho! My phone is ringing! A minute, if you please. I won’t be long, only a minute.
Hello? No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Goodbye.
I apologize for that. It was very rude of me. A wrong number, as always.
Where was I? Ah, yes. I believe I was speaking of the sun, specifically how it cheers the bright winter sky. This is something new under the sun, the bright winter sky I mean. Does it never tire of doing so? The sun, I mean, and the cheering, I mean. Could it be that the sun is so unimaginative, so as it were disinterested in its own potential, that it would go on burning this way and never once consider the alternatives? Or does the sun expect us to applaud it for simply doing what is most obvious, and for deferring yet again to habit? Well I, for one, will not applaud. The time has arrived for bold ideas, not for the same-old burning of the same-old sun. Let the sun go dark for a change, that would be something. And let the winter sky be cheerless, that would be something also. And then I will stay in, or perhaps I will go out, and either way, whether if staying in for the burning or if going out for the darkness, I am sure to regret it.