Monday, February 29, 2016

Being incomprehensibly different or Favorite childhood things - Part I

There are many ways I have been, "different" my whole life. I think in some ways everyone has difference to them. Do I believe we are unique snowflakes? I am not sure, but I can tell you that I have always felt, "other". That is a comparative of course. We simply do this thing were we compare the self versus the median gray of the mass.

I thought somehow as became exposed to more, saw more, understood more, that the feeling of, "other" would fade. It hasn't. Moreso, I find that I have to work really hard to integrate myself into popular culture. 

I abstractly understand that this is a misaligned attempt to try to understand things. Though, let's be frank, that will never happen.

What brought this up? Well, I was listening to a playlist of my favorite songs from my childhood and realized how not normal a list it is for a child that grew up at the time I did. Then my mind began to wander. How else was I different?

So here are my childhood "different" favorites.

Favorite Childhood Magazine: Architectural Digest
Favorite Childhood Book: That is a tie. Between the Mouse Family Album by: Pamela Sampson and Dorland's Illustrated Medical Dictionary
Favorite Childhood Poem: The Land of Nod by: Robert Louis Stevenson
From breakfast on through all the day
At home among my friends I stay,
But every night I go abroad
Afar into the land of Nod. 
All by myself I have to go,
With none to tell me what to do —
All alone beside the streams
And up the mountain-sides of dreams. 
The strangest things are there for me,
Both things to eat and things to see,
And many frightening sights abroad
Till morning in the land of Nod. 
Try as I like to find the way,
I never can get back by day,
Nor can remember plain and clear
The curious music that I hear.
Favorite Childhood Television Show: Also a tie. Between NOVA and Are You Being Served?
Favorite Childhood Movie: Chuck Jones's Mowgli's Brothers

Favorite Childhood Animal: Lynx
Favorite Childhood Flower: Lilac
Favorite Childhood Tree: Weeping Willow
Favorite Childhood Game: The Doodle Game (This is where my mother and I would doodle a nonsense scribble and the other one would have to turn it into something recognizable. )
Favorite Childhood Toy: Bongos
Favorite Childhood Food: Indian Fry Bread with Honey
Favorite Childhood Song: Hushabye Mountain

Saturday, February 13, 2016

the syrian refugee

I wanted to share this lovely story that my Canadian friend posted on Facebook. Timothy Dean Lever writes:

Today, on my way home from work, I was stopped by a young gentleman. He said no words, but smiled and held out a piece of paper with an address on it. He pointed to the address and, in attempt to communicate, spoke his native language, which I recognized as Arabic.
I recognized the street, but not the civic number. So in my attempt to communicate, I spoke my native language.. "I'm not sure, but wait.."
He was confused. So was I. But no panic.
I said, "Syria?"
He shook his head yes.
I held up a single finger to wait a minute.
I took my phone out and opened up a rarely used translation app. One you can speak in, in both languages, to hold a conversation. I once used it at work to communicate in French with a customer.
I opened the app and set the languages. I asked the app if he understood this. He smiled. I spoke again to instruct him to speak into it and I will see English. He did so.

I gave him the best direction I could to his street and he understood, smiled, and spoke thank you for everything.
I asked him if he was cold. He had a bulky jacket, gloves, but not a toque!
He said, "cold yes. Snow great". I gave him my second toque I keep in my backpack (just in case I lose my one in my jacket)
He put it on, crooked like me as he pointed to mine. We laughed, He shook my hand and we parted ways.
It's the little things...