Hocus Pocus

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This is the first anniversary of "Amused to Life," and I happily arrive at this post in a context that is neither obligatory nor filler.  There have been many moments when I've wondered if I could maintain my (loose) self-imposed pace of posting, or, more importantly, if I could continually find things to write about that would maintain my own interest, never mind those who might stumble upon it.  Yet, here I am.

There are plenty of other options out there to entertain myself, and at times, even as I prioritize writing, I wish I was doing something else.  As these often take a fair bit of time to put together, can't I find something better to do?  Why do I bother?

What did I expect?  This has been fairly typical of non-commercial blogs I've perused, generally read by friends with minimal feedback.  But that's not why I, and I suspect most, people write.  I re-read my initial post, and I'm somewhat surprised that my initial projection of what this would become has proven to be the case. 

This isn't a diary.  It's not just about music or other forms of entertainment. It's not (always) a venting of otherwise suppressed aggravation at all the injustices in the world.  It's not overtly didactic.  But as a person thinks, so they write.

Gee.  So far, this sounds like filler and obligatory.  Now for the part I've been thinking about recognizing that one year was approaching... the answers to why I bother.

1. I forget things.  This may not be a diary of daily events, but it's certainly a record of some of what I've thought about in the past year.  It's sort of like a photo album, and I'm probably as likely to look back at it as I do with those (hardly ever). 

2. It's a reference point for my kids.  For all those conversations that could have happened but never did, it may someday help them understand who their father is...should they ever read it. 

3. I had been writing music reviews anyway, but much shorter in length and distributed within a small network of friends who share their year's favorites.  With the extra space, I have room to really say what I mean to say, supplemented with lyrics, music, and/or video.  If I help one person find an artist that they  like, I'm happy.

4. Though not an intended reason for writing, there is a sense of self-discovery.  Though this often involves recollecting things otherwise in the haze of the past, writing has helped me see how central music seems to be in how I process life in general.

5.  There are so many things I think about each day - try as we might, there's no pause button.  Most thoughts disappear as quickly as the goodies in my office candy jar.  I find that I pay more attention to my thoughts and test whether there may an application here, which means I think more deeply about them.  That's been rewarding for me.

6. Probably the most personally surprising aspect of writing is that it has made me more open to trying things that I ordinarily might resist, if only because I may find something in the experience worth reflecting upon and sharing.  That's healthy.

7.  Math was my strong suit way back in school.  In everything but differential equations, which bested me, there was a problem, a process to address it, and an answer.  When a problem was completed, everything seemed in its right place. 

I've found writing to be very much the same.  In progressing from point A to point B, the diction, phrasing, sentence structures, etc. are like puzzles that must fit to maintain a sense of flow.  Add to that the challenge of verbally presenting an issue, reasoning through it, and arriving at the outcome, and there is a similarity to math.  There is order to the universe.

8. Writing is fun.  There.  I said it.  Somehow, all those burdensome teachers with their tired expectations didn't rob me of the joy of writing.  Also, I have to say it's rewarding to have at least one creative outlet, having failed at any others I've tried. 

Most points or arguments can be made with a paucity of words.  But I never know what path a post will take, because the mind is a terrible thing to predict, and the connecting dots often surprise me even as I think of them.  Which seems a fitting way to close this post.

Follow the bouncing ball...

In medieval times, the Catholic Church jealously guarded written Scripture, which was held within the domain of the priesthood (in which it remained until the Reformation and the timely introduction of the printing press extended it to the laity.)  Until then, however, the churchgoer's sole exposure to scripture and other creeds was orally, and often in Latin.  The words of the consecration of the host (during Mass) were hoc est corpus, meaning "this is my body," from which both sound and meaning might evolve into "hocus pocus," according to one long-held theory.

Which brings us to conjuring a great song, as different today as it was in 1973.  Focus now:

1 comment :

  1. What a great song by some very talented musicians who were a "tad askew". Kind of has that Jethro Tull-ish Circus act feel to it. We used to play this as just an instramental jam in my basement. As someone playing the drums, I loved it because it had the drum solo's every few minutes. Good music, related to some of the best times in my younger days. Thanks for poking in the past. Mickey