[MauiTime, — July 28, 2011 — Volume 15; Issue 06]
by Anu Yagi (@anuheayagi on Twitter)
“[T]here are some things that can beat smartness and foresight. Awkwardness and stupidity can. The best swordsman in the world doesn’t need to fear the second best swordsman in the world; no, the person for him to be afraid of is some ignorant antagonist who has never had a sword in his hand before; he doesn’t do the thing he ought to do, and so the expert isn’t prepared for him.” – Mark Twain, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court
I recently tried saving a document as “Stuffs Fo’ Do” (yes, most of my file names are in Pidgin), but received the booped error message “’Stuffs Fo’ Do’ already exists.” So, I tried “Stuffs Fo’ Do_2” (boop!), followed by “_3” and “_4” and “_5” (boop! boop! boop!), before succumbing to the fact that I get plene stuffs fo’ do.
But having a full schedule is no excuse for fatuity, and everyday—neigh every moment—I’m confounded by my capacity for it.
Case in point: My time ill-spent late Sunday night at the laundromat. I thought I was being so productive with my brand new spray bottle of Invisible Glass, trotting between OCDing my windshield and adding softener or dryer sheets. But then I locked my keys in the car—which I’d parked behind a locked and barbed wired gate. Talk about high agitation.
[Image (via Wikipedia): Muscular spasms (specifically opisthotonos) in a patient suffering from tetanus. Painting by Sir Charles Bell, 1809.]
At the laundromat you can buy wire hangers for a quarter a piece. I destroyed a dollar’s worth.
Given the frequency with which I pull this sort of tomfoolery, I’d like to think I’ve earned enough skills to consult on the set of a Gone In 60 Seconds pre-or sequel. But after contracting tetanus by tangling myself in a bouquet of untwisted hangers as if within the tentacles of Cthulhu, I questioned whether I could get into my car even if I had the key.
Dear Mr. Murphy, the mocker, made sure my phone died right in front of my eyes; so I was left with no other option but to hike the declivity-free road from Kahului to Wailuku with a massive basket of laundry on my head like some third world washer-woman who’d lost more than her way.
The street lights’ carnival mirror shadows had me fretting about my biceps bulking, exacerbating my already wretched wings, and with every passing car I worried (and wished) someone might pull over and attempt to return the idiot to her village. No one did.
I had at least five long lists of stuffs left fo’ do (there are also exponential, deprioritized files named “Try Fo’ Do Dis” and “Try Fo’ Do Dat”), but having no way of getting to them or the things that would enable their accomplishment, I resigned to crashing on my buddy’s couch and listening to Howard Stern until those tired, popping flashes started to appear in my peripheral and consumed my vision with an unwilling, unaccomplished fade to black.
Randy Bartlett, friend of the paper and the world’s premier Facebook liker, recently retweeted a link from unclutterer.com with an image of J.K. Rowling’s organizational notes—part of a penned grid that helped her construct the almost 4,200-page, seven-book epoch of Harry Potter & Co.
Having been so recently reminded that mindfulness of dotting or crossing little lines makes a big difference—and a desire to be more than a pygmy scribe—I looked at Rowling’s notes carefully in an attempt to assess my own writing processes. At which point, I realized, I have none. At least, none to speak of.
See, I own a pile of notebooks of every dimension, rule and binding; and by the looks of my gallimaufry penmanship, each is seemingly possessed by demons outnumbering the scape-swine in chapter five of the Gospel of Mark.
[Image (via Wikipedia): Jesus exercising the first step of “The Hokey Pokey,” or, woodcut for “Die Bibel in Bildern”, 1860.]
Many pages are streaked with mud, embossed by stilettos’ seal and stink of booze. Should there be anything of literary value in any these notebooks, I’ll never know because it’s all mostly unintelligible (except for the curse words, which persevere by sheer adjective strength).*
With nothing scratched off my list(s), in eternal return I’ve only added new stuffs fo’ do. 1) Exorcise penmanship. 2) Seek some semblance of processes. 3) Keep your bloody keys in hand…
Obviously, if these simple things are still issues at this point in my life, I may have to add to my begrudged acceptations that I’m a trickless ol’ bitch. While this means I might be unteachable, I’m going to embrace (maybe) Einstein’s definition of insane and try to learn better.
So if you see frazzled me fiddling with wires whilst a basket’s atop my head, don’t throw me any bones. I can’t, after all, learn but on my own. ■
“After contracting tetanus by tangling myself in a bouquet of untwisted hangers as if within the tentacles of Cthulhu, I questioned whether I could get into my car even if I had the key.”
GOODY BAG [extra, online only stuff]
YESTERDAY, AFTER MAUITIME HIT NEWSSTANDS, I HAD LUNCH AT MAIN STREET BISTRO WITH MY BUDDY DAVID JORGENSEN, ESQ. (http://www.takitanilaw.com). APPARENTLY LAWYERS NO MO’ ‘NUFF STUFFS FO’ DO BECAUSE HE READS THIS COLUMN REGULARLY (?!).
DAVE WAS KIND ENOUGH TO COMPLAIN ABOUT MY VOCABULARY AND SAID I SHOULD LINK TO TRICKY WORDS’ DEFINITIONS ONLINE OR SOMETHING. SO I DID. IN CASE YOU MISSED IT, HERE IT IS AGAIN:
P.S. Because I’ve got the brain of a twelve-year-old boy in a 26-year-old woman’s body, I see the word “tetanus” and think “tits and ass.” Sorry.
ALSO: MORE LINKS INCLUDED IN THIS STORY:
>>> Invisible glass! http://youtu.be/wlELYZJ5JF4
>>> Harry Potter how-to! http://unclutterer.com/2010/10/12/organize-your-writing-j-k-rowling-style/
>>> More Cthulu (Ktulu)! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Call_of_Ktulu#The_Call_of_Ktulu
P.P.S. Because I referenced H.P. Lovecraft’s The Call of Cthulhu–which I learned about back in the day thanks to Metallica’s Ride The Lightning reference, “The Call of Ktulu”–I later referenced Metallica, too, by saying “fade to black”(the title of another track off Ride)… http://youtu.be/faEX3qjP9Mc
>>> Dear ol’ Mr. Murphy, the mocker… http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murphy%27s_law
>>> We like Randy Bartlett because Randy Bartlett likes everything. Here’s proof: http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Randy-Bartlett-Likes-This-Page-Page/180263366984 In fact, we like Randy Bartlett’s likes so much, that when he gave a lecture at Viewpoints Gallery back in September 2010, we made and ran this in MauiTime‘s This Week’s Picks:https://mauitime.com/Articles-i-2010-09-23-74599.113117_Conservation_Conversations_at_Viewpoints_Gallery.html
>>> Read Mark 5:13 here: http://bible.cc/mark/5-13.htm
“He gave them permission, and the evil spirits came out and went into the pigs. The herd, about two thousand in number, rushed down the steep bank into the lake and were drowned.”
>>> I’m an asshole, perpetuating the possibility that Einstein said “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again but expecting different results.” http://wiki.answers.com…
>>> Pygmy scribe: another Mark Twain tie-in! (click image for link)
SHAMELESS SELF PROMOTION BY WAY OF “RELEATED READING”:
>>> What’s all this stuff about “stuffs”? Here are some notes about Pidgin: https://mauitime.com/Articles-i-2010-06-24-73716.113117-Talking-Pidgin.html
>>> Read more about me being “a trickless ol’ bitch”: http://mauifeed.wpengine.com/kulakid/kula-kid-45-uneasy-rider/
*A TENUOUSLY RELATED ANECDOTE (OF SORTS)
Full of beer and a desire to bon dance, after this year’s Maui Brewers Festival (at the Maui Arts and Cultural Center), my buddies and I stumbled across the street to the annual Maui Matsuri (at University of Hawaii, Maui College).
Because I went to UHMC many moons ago, I thought I knew a shortcut to get back to my car — never taking into account the fact that maybe the ongoing on-campus construction in recent years might have changed all that (it did). Lost and very drunk, I collapsed against a well-lit tree and scribbled in one of my notebooks for pages upon pages.
I remember rambling about epiphanies and how exhausting being enamored by Earth can sometimes be, so I was eager to review my rant. But a few days later (it took that long to recover), when I flipped open the notebook, I found more mud than a Brazilian slide smeared across paragraphs woven of nothing but nonsensical loops. The only legible words in the entry were the final ones, which simply read, “Fuck you, John Safran.”
Seeing as I obsess over Safran — because he obsesses over the things I like to obsess about (like exorcisms) — to have come to the “fuck you” conclusion is a curious one. My only guess is that the loops preceding that final phrase were “I’d like to,” but even when very drunk I’m not known to be so crass.
I’m not going to bother wrapping-up this blog addendum neatly because no one is (or should be) reading this. This whole “extra, online-only stuff” is like farting in the wind; and this installment is particularly silent but deadly.
Hmm… Maybe I am crass after all!
>>> Read more about the Maui Matusuri: http://mauivents.com/music/11th-annual-maui-matsuri-japanese-cultural-festival
>>> Read more about bon dancing: http://mauivents.com/maui-events/bon-dances-abound-maui