Caterpillar Contemplations

"What the caterpillar calls the end, the rest of the world calls a butterfly." Lao Tzu

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Good morning spongecake

I woke up today and without knowing it, the world had conspired against me. It filled my spongy day with soft whipped cream, iced it white and sprinkled it with fairy dust.

It felt good, the day. It tasted good. And when I reflect back, though I get the sense that it had no nutritional content, I nonetheless feel sated.

Some days are like that. It doesn’t make them bad days. They just are. On another day, like this day, but not quite like it, I would feel guilty about having not spent my time wisely. I’d feel guilty about minutes ticked away on the paper, or the walk with the dog, or gazing at my emerging seedlings. But today, I don’t.

I wish that the euphoria and gentle allowance I have about this day could happen on days when I most need it. Like, when I was stuck in Canberra waiting for the car to be fixed with nothing to do. This feeling of ‘meh, I accomplished nothing’ would have been advantageous then. In fact, given my situation, the chances are I would have felt even more euphoric than I do today simply because I had no other choice than to do nothing.

It’d be nice if we could post days we have now, back to when we needed them. Or even, if we could copy days and keep them on file to pull out and alter at will.

I’d copy this day.

I’d copy the soft sunshine and the excitement as another sprout emerged from sandy soil.

I’d copy the laughter of watching my dog leap through long grass and slide on pine needles like a kid on red cordial.

I’d copy hugs from my son and the bright look in his eyes when I said “when you’re older you can go to the shops on your own”.

I’d copy time with my mother, speaking with my lover and the visit from family friends.

I’d copy this moment, at the end of a day, when I say “Wow, I’d copy this day.”



Hi, my name is Alex and I’ve been facebook free for over a year now

Facebook sucks!

That’s right. You read me. It sucks. Impersonal crock of shite!

First, there were email cards, which essentially say ‘I like you enough to put minimal amount of effort into finding a pathetically animated card and posting it to you at no expense to me and with little forethought.’ I delete them. Usually I can read what the sender has written, the only part of the card which has any meaning, as it appears in the email and then I delete it.

Then, or perhaps simultaneously there were chain emails. Not just the kind where if you don’t send it on you’ll die in the next 3 hours, but ones that profess to be gathering signatures for a ’cause’. Nothing says I’m fighting for my beliefs and really making change in the world like a signature email. That’ll show them – those people! Yeah, high flying corporates, take that email and that email and that email and see, they’re filled with typed names, how do you like them apples?

At some stage in our techno-evolution it was perfectly acceptable to invite people to events or parties via text and email. I’m not opposed to this form of invitation but I often get the feeling that I’m just a click of a button, not specifically chosen. I like to have my ego boosted occassionally by a specifically addressed invitation.

Then, there was Facebook. Which is essentially all of the aboves rolled into one, with a side of crap.

Status updates:
You’re hot? cold? hungry? at work? on holidays? just ate a big donut? just saw a dog piss?
I don’t care! I don’t.
I originally thought that facebook would be a good opportunity for me to really know how my friends were doing (the lazy way). But since I have a predisposed issue with being superficial, I found that status updates often made me gag on my frustration.
Aside from the innane, useless updates of the perennially bored, there are the natural entertainers who must update their statuses with contrived wit. Witty status updates have undisclosed side effects. One, they set up an expectation that the author cannot replicate daily. Two, they disempower the less witty. And three, when overused, they get boring. Oh yes, your incredible wit is sooooo last week.

Sure, I’ll join your group that is against killing dolphins. Phew! I’m so glad I did that. It’s so satisfying to know I’m really making an impact on the planet. After all, facebook groups-like chain emails-really punch those bullies where it hurts.

I wrote on your wall. Therefore I don’t need to make any meaningful contact for another month, at which time, I can write on your wall again. Better still, it’s your birthday so I’m going to write on your wall, just so you know how important you are – this of course, will remind all those other people-who don’t honestly give a shit about you but have you as a friend to up their numbers-to also wish you happy birthday.

Being exceptionally good at lowering my self esteem, photos of other peoples lives is a real downer. Of course, when people post photos, generally speaking, they only post ones where they look good. On the flipside, people can post photos of you where you don’t look so good. This causes two reactions for me. One, I hate how I look in photos so I don’t really want to post them for the world to see. And secondly, I spend loads of time looking at how good other people look in their photos.
Suffering a breakup? Just pour on a little photo salt of your ex out enjoying him/herself surrounded by hot (or at least decent looking) wo/men. Trust me, it’s therapeutic.

You want to be my friend? Ah crap! Saying no may offend someone in my 6 degrees of seperation and saying yes then affects my ability to say I am an honest person. Ah hell, why not, it’s not like I have to have a meaningful relationship with you, it is facebook afterall.

Zombie bites, hugs and presents:
The only zombie game I want to play is one where I get to shoot them.
The only hugs I want to receive are ones with arms involved.
The only presents I want to get, are in a physical form that I can touch, smell, feel, taste or hear. And don’t you dare, ever, send me a virtual plant for my virtual garden. I believe in dirt, sun and water. You can shove that virtual plant where the sun don’t shine, that’s right, the spot where my facebook page used to be.

If it’s an important event, then I ain’t coming unless it arrives with my name on it in my letterbox. This is even more enforced if there is an expectation of an awesome present.

Note about the author: Alex suffered from Facebook fever for a year before coming clean. She now has positive meaningful interactions with people she actually likes.