Gentle Reader, I feel that people may be under a bit of an illusion when it comes to the type of things that fire my delight: I will find ridiculous pleasure in things like this and this and this. These are all real things that have happened in our world, that are utterly ridiculous, beyond any sane reality; they spark wonder, and give me a certain lust to be alive. Yes, Hamlet, there are more things in Heaven and Earth than are dreamt of in my philosophy, but when I encounter them, they stir passion and beauty inside me. This effect is what I, personally, refer to as “The Miracle of the Bromeliad.”
If you don’t know, Bromeliads are these exotic plants typically found in tropical climes. They collect water, like this:
In South and Central America, various species of frog will lay their eggs in these flowers, which are sometimes quite high and far away from the ground. It is not unusual for these frogs to never reach the ground, living their little lives in various flower puddles, from birth to death. Bizarre, improbable, and true.
I was fairly young when I learned of this, and the utter improbability struck me to the core. The world we live in is ludicrous; if you wrote fiction like some of the things I run across, you’d be laughed out of the business. It’s important to take delight in these things, because they remind us that our little loves, our little sorrows, our grandes amours trés serieux and our funerals and hospitals and politics – all of these things exist in the exact same world as duck fashion shows. That’s the miracle. Yes, our lives are grave and important, and we have to make the rent or the deadline or the date, but – is that a taxidermy kitten pulling a miniature hearse?
Yes, it is. Even in the throes of my depression, if I can manage to find new curiosities, or interesting or silly wonders, things that make the world, frankly, incredible – it doesn’t make me any easier to be around, but it does keep me from complete self-destruction. It doesn’t make things any better, in my current situation, but to know that there are situations out there that sound like something from Twitter or Wodehouse or Seuss – well, it reminds me that there’s hope.
The lesson here is that although we don’t all have to be electric and alarming and alive at all times, we are allowed to be. It’s the same sentiment behind Auntie Mame‘s famous battle cry – “Life is a banquet, and most poor suckers are starving to death!” It’s what the Bloggess means when she says to “Lean into the weird.” As my mother, former hippie, often tells me – “Let your freak flag fly!” These bizzarities teach us to embrace our true nature, and damn the consequences. We can’t help who we are, what we love, how we behave – why should we try?
Therefore, please enjoy some photos of things that make me glad to live in our thoroughly absurd little world.
A Baroque Poodle. Don’t fix it.
Our world is magnificent, Gentle Reader; we should cherish that, and add to its variety.