I love anagrams. When our writing group gets together and the topic is handed out for next week, the first thing I often do is to subject the phrase to verbal torture by means of the anagram generator – freely available on the Net, by the way. I do this just to see what comes forth; often the results are quite startling. Trouble is ‘Take a Road Trip’ yields 15,961 possibilities! I just haven’t the patience to even wade through the first thousand that are displayed. ‘Dark Poet Tiara’ is the one I like the best. Of course you have the option of applying various filters so as make the task less onerous but… who gives a fff… Fig Newton!
It’s said that Isaac Newton, in the 17th century, established a set of equations that described the physical properties of the world around us after a fig hit him on the head! Yeah, alright I know – it was actually an apple! That story itself is rather apocryphal. In any event, it was these very successful equations from a description of the trajectory of a cannonball, to the motion of the planets that led to Einstein’s work some 200 years later.
Some days I feel like I’m 200 years old as well. And incredibly… well… we’re nearly at the closure of yet another year! Can you believe it? Another mysterious portent raises: as you get older, why do the years appear to accelerate faster and faster? I wonder if this is another phenomenon that Einstein pondered upon one hundred years ago, when he presented his new theory of general relativity to the Prussian Academy of Sciences? Clearly, I haven’t a clue either and incidentally, if you can make sense of his theories, you’re a smarter one than me Gunga Din. In fact, even if you can solve Einstein’s riddle, you’re smarter than me! If you’re really that masochistic – here’s the link. Some people have been known to use spreadsheets (tsk, tsk). Whilst others claim that using pen and paper is cheating! Dear me – how archaic!
Evidently, Einstein reckoned that only two per cent of people would have a chance of solving the puzzle. I’m told that it’s like doing a Sudoku puzzle using words instead of numbers. Come to think of it, I used to feel equally as challenged by the Rubix Cube. Either way, I’m snookered – to use a phrase of dubious merit! It also serves to remind me that I was turned down for computer training around 40-odd years ago. Why? Because I didn’t think logically. Still don’t! I might add that some of the more esoteric movements of double entry bookkeeping were beyond my comprehension also. I can still hear John – the tech college instructor’s voice intoning like a Zen Buddhist Master, ‘Just accept it James, all will be well.’ Om!
These days we’re more likely to ‘Take the A Train’ than take to the road like Jack Kerouac. ‘Hit the road, Jack and don’t you come back no more’. I don’t feel inclined now to ‘Take it to the Limit’. Back in my own rebellious youth when it was all rock ‘n’ roll, naughty weed and staying up all night; I wrote a song that included the line, ‘Get out on the road, ease this heavy load, gotta make myself some brass’. I’m tempted to now use the expression – iconoclastic. Kerouac was iconoclastic, dangerous even. In comparison I am about as dangerous as an after dinner mint.
But what has all this to do with taking a road trip? Answer: Absolutely nothing! Zen… Although I suppose you could work on Einstein’s riddle if you are the passenger in the car, to pass the time whilst nibbling on a Fig Newton. (It’s a biscuit!) My partner and I have been thinking we should take another road trip soon. The problem is not so much where we should go to, as rather…why? Can we be bothered? Why should we? Now why is a far more enormous question requiring far more deliberation than I would wish to enter into. There’s no doubt about it; with retirement, lethargy becomes highly seductive. Mañana means tomorrow in Spanish and it seems to suit me well. Why do today what you can put off until tomorrow? Sings, ‘Mañana! Mañana is good enough for me!’ Indeed, too well my lady might argue. She seems to think I live in a parallel universe. Correct, I’m meeting up with Einstein for a cosmic road trip. Anyway, perhaps we might consider a road trip to ‘Manyana’, with a ‘y’, on the South Coast. A sleepy little town about 200 kms south of Sydney – could we view that as some sort of compromise? Why not!
Just pass me my Dark Poet Tiara; I’ll wear it with pride. We dilettantes are misunderstood.
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