Friday, February 11, 2005

The Universe Speaks Through Children 

Mysterious messages from the subconscious? No, I'm not talking about blogmeme My Little Golden Book About ZOGG. Rather, after a night and day of surely stress-induced backpain, the tiny calendar sticker that Willow planted on my coatsleeve this morning as I walked out the door shows a headless, armless, naked back with white spine visible. The caption? Chiropractor.

Couldn't have been deliberate on her part -- sure she's abnormally bright, but no two year old could have made that connection. No, out of a hundred mostly holiday-oriented labels, that particular sticker just...came up, ominously. Maybe the universe is trying to tell me something.

UPDATE 3:35 pm: Calendar As Culture

Home for lunch to discover the wee one had stickered her indoor universe with the rest of the calendar stickers. Interestingly, upon further examination, it becomes clear that the rest of the stickers were not merely holiday oriented, but comprehensive to a fault.

The hidden messages are more ominous than before. Taken as a set, a dubious lifestyle emerges:
  • There are 8 "hair/nails appointment" stickers, but only four say "flowers."

  • 4 stickers for "pet care," but only one "Vet."

  • As many auto service stickers as Doctor's visits and prescription pick-ups combined.

  • 4 stickers for "special worship" show hands clasped in clearly Christian prayer.

  • 2 plumber/electrician stickers, and 2 "furnace/AC maintenance" stickers.

They're all over the house. The kitchen stool says "hunting season." A jail-like school, door laden with huge padlock, proudly proclaims "no school" from atop my slippers; 7 more sprinkle the nearby stairs.

Overall, then, in the universe of the calendar sticker, self trumps service, style trumps substance, and comfort trumps obligation. Catholicism reigns, as does the accessorization of the greenlawned suburban homeowner. Though there are four stickers for "volunteering," the world of middle-class commercial culture overwhelms; mass media messages fill a home once known for its lack of network and television access.

Whose life this is I think I know, but it sure as heck ain't ours.

Next time, the free calendar stays at the florists.

posted by boyhowdy | 10:14 AM |

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