Thursday, March 13, 2014

Heaven and Hell

My mother always says that we experience heaven and hell on earth itself.

She is right. Hell I have seen in times of pain and illness and death of loved ones.

Heaven, I believe, is different for everyone. One of my ideas of heaven is musical bliss.

My son and I take piano lessons. In the past few months my son has developed a strong interest in his music and practices all hours he has free. I am plodding along, wondering why I'm not able to parlay my decades of voice training to the instrument. I'm not doing badly but the leaps and bounds I thought I'd make progress with is not happening.

A few days ago, though I had a chance to get a glimpse of musical heaven. My son was practicing a song--a simple but catchy song. I told him to jump up an octave. I then played the song in the lower octaves and he played in the higher ones.

We both had the song down and playing all across the piano, even that simple song sounded fantastic.

I felt a joy in my heart that was indescribable. The thought of playing songs like this with my son as we both make progress was one filled with such happiness that I could only describe it as heaven.

I walked on air the rest of the evening.

Perhaps if we are able to find such joy in more and more things, and simpler and simpler things,
a semblance of that nirvana, bliss etc etc would be more and more within our grasp. 

Bleeding edge trend

This is a term I heard while ago. Bleeding edge.

Now there's cutting edge which we all know. But bleeding edge, that is trendy that's beyond just trendy. Its way cooler. It's usually applied to technology but the words, so graphic, can be applied to everything else.

Now I am NOT a trendy person. My hair is in a style that went out in 1982. I still have pairs of shoes I bought in 1999. I never wore them when they were trendy but given fashion cycles, I know by the time I get to wearing them, they''ll be back in style again, as will my hair do.

No, this is about my eco-friendliness. Which is trendy nowadays. Carrying your own shopping bags to grocery stores, that sort of thing.

I am beyond that. Way beyond. Not showing off, its just who I am. I compost, I recycle obsessively. I buy and use local or organic food, cook only free range meats the rare times I cook meat, I use biodegradable garbage bags. I seldom use the clothes dryer. You get the idea.

I am not showing off. Thing is, all I do is not worth showing off because people don't praise me for what I do and don't do. They roll their eyes at me when I wince at their use of styrofoam plates and cups, they sigh when I collect their recyclables and bring them home with me. They shout out in despair when I turn off the taps as they wool gather instead of doing the dishes. These people are just not trendy in the eco-friendly sense.

Then there are my bleeding edge friends. They are so trendy that when they know I am visiting, they warn me sternly. No, none of that recycling rubbish you do at home happens here all right? So please don't give me grief. But--I say, only to be rudely interrupted, We don't have time for all that.'

Or another friend holding her dinner plate above my garbage cans. Now do i recycle this, or compost this or what? I can never tell with you.

I have found myself apologizing to them. I have felt myself near tears when I am around them for my country bumpkin like habits. Then I want to kill them. I mean, sure what I do isn't easy or pleasant. It is time consuming and painful.

But then I don't do it because I must or trendy. I mean what's stylish about putting your hand in the toilet to flush away your baby's poop when you have chosen not to use disposable diapers?

No, I want to tell these super trendy folk that what I am doing is saving the planet for their great grandkids.

That's bloody all. And if that sounds like I am showing off, well, that's just fine then!