Thursday, July 16, 2009

Things that Blow My Mind

There are some things that I simply can not wrap my brain around - here are a few:

1. Fax Machines. I can put a piece of paper on a machine in this office, punch in a phone number, and an exact duplicate of it will come out of a machine in Japan. How?! That shouldn't be possible. Who ever thought that that would work? Not me.

The Internet and email are in that same category.

2. Female Gymnasts. Those little girls run, jump, and then do three somersaults, a flip and a twist before landing again. It defies my understanding of the abilities of the human body.

3. Old stuff. When Melody and I were in London, we went to the Treasures Room at the British Library. There they have original documents, letters, musical scores, everything. We saw the handwritten manuscript of "Jane Eyre", an original Gutenberg Bible, a volume of the first edition printing of all of Shakespeare's plays, and the handwritten score to Handel's Messiah. Unbelievable. The thing that blows my mind here is that someone thought to keep this stuff, lots of someones, for centuries. These things weren't printed and then immediately put into a museum, they were private property, and those people kept them. There's a case with stuff from the Beatles, and we saw a birthday card with song lyrics that John Lennon had written on it - he'd used it as scratch paper. If that had been me, after the song was properly written out and recorded, I would have looked at that card and thought, "Don't need this anymore. I'll throw it away." But now it's in a museum, and looking at it really is remarkable.

4. A Lobster on Notre Dame. There's a lobster carved into one of the stones on Notre Dame. I took a picture of it, and have thought about it many times since. I even asked my French teacher if she knew of any significance to the lobster. She didn't. Why would some stone cutter in the 13th century, dressed in rags, carve a lobster into a stone for the walls of Notre Dame, and then why was it put by an entrance right next to a patron saint? I don't know. I'd really like to know. It's too bizarre for words.

Four of the many things that I can't figure out, both new and ancient. How about you? Are there things that you think about over and over again just to have your mind blown wide open? Let me know.

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