Monday, 23 March 2015

Echoes in the Navel

So... I was checking out my lint trap... err... navel. When the hell did it become an innie?
While relieving some lint, it got me thinking about things we only use once. After all, the navel is a one use contraption then hangs around doing not much. Well, except when Uncle Bob threatens to undo the thing so our bum falls off.
I seem to collect a plethora of one use things.
There used to be plenty of one use things hanging around my life because I “might” need such a thing sometime somewhere. It's probably the reason I can MacGiver pretty much anything. I have plenty of options. It's also the reason there is a blown out inner tube, seven screw drivers, a dinner jacket, one sock, three pair of gloves and a ton of elastics and screws in my truck. What if something happens? My tools are no different. Unless I'm planning to build a credenza or erect a scale model of the Eiffel Tower, most of those things won't get used often enough to warrant owning one. Yet I'm still reluctant to part with any of them. Boys and their toys... ya know?
Have you ever gone rooting through your pile of “garage stuff” or your junk drawer or that top shelf of the closet? How much of that stuff do you really need? I think once you're over fifty broccoli elastics, you're probably set for life. And what about that old travel kit with the dried out bandages and rusty razors? Really? You still need those?
We have two tendencies when it comes to stuff. The first is we hang onto things far too long. By the time we dig them out they've often become useless. The second tendency is to get rid of perfectly good stuff before it's done. (This is how the economy works, in case you're wondering.) A fifty inch TV becomes obsolete as soon as the neighbours show up with a sixty inch TV. Have a two year old cell phone? No problem! The phone company is giving away a free one to keep your business. And the old one goes... umm... goes... Where do old cell phones go? Our kids don't want them!
We spend far too much time keeping up with the Smiths. (I don't bother keeping up with the Jones' any longer since they started letting their dog poop on my lawn.)
Speaking of clearing junk, when do we clear some of the crap floating around in our heads? You know the stuff I mean. Those things that haunt us from our past and return when we least expect like echoes in the dark. While some of those memories may have value – like something that reminds you of college or a child's birth or a marriage – the ones that seem to pop up out of nowhere aren't always the most positive.
And we downplay the good stuff with an almost automatic "yeah.. but".
If it's affecting your life in a negative way, you really don't need it anymore. If it's something you did, forgive yourself. If it's something they did, forgive them. If it's something occurring now, get away from it. If you can't handle it on your own, ask for help.
It's a funny thing about putting out negative or positive thoughts. They really do echo back. Sometimes the echo is quick. Sometimes it takes years. And it always comes back. Wouldn't you rather have something positive echo back?
Perhaps the navel does have value after all. It's a reminder of when we were born. A time when we were innocent and every thought we had was fresh and positive. It was a time when what we put out to the world was exactly who we were. We weren't born angry or sad or negative. All that crap is learned and can be unlearned. By toning down our negative side (it's difficult to get rid of every negative thought) and ramping up our positive side, we're getting back to what we were when we were babies – wide eyed and amazed at a wonderful, wacky world.
Perhaps this is what navel gazing really means; remembering and listening to the echoes of who we once were.
So... I was checking out my nostrils...