Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Cosmic Thinkers

This is something you should know if you read this blog. Forewarned is forearmed. 

I am sitting at the Eagleson's kitchen table. This is my favorite place to visit when I am in Hershey. They had saved me soup from dinner, something with spicy ham and beans, and it touches the sub freezing cold that is settling into my bones. We talk about all the things from each other's lives that we've missed in the past year, about their brother getting married, about my work at Penn State. We run through our critiques of The Hobbit with seriousness and detail. The conversations run all over each other; everyone talks at once at the Eagleson's and everyone is somehow heard.

I am coming off of several days of morbid self-reflection that is sadly characteristic of some of my trips to Hershey. I am wrapped up in analyzing of every movement and running myself into a depression from it. The tea and the soup have buoyed me.

Hannah notes something in the midst of this that stops me. She is talking about her brother and his new bride, how the details of the wedding were at times overwhelming because he is a "cosmic thinker". I wasn't sure what this meant.

"Let's say you cut your finger. If you are a non-cosmic thinker, you say, 'Oh. Let me go find a band aid.' If you are a cosmic thinker, you look at the finger and start to contemplate about your traits that led you to that moment and what it says about you and your relationship in the world that you would be negligent enough to cut your finger. Then, if you're anything like Donne, you associate the cut finger to the reality of human nature and mortality and then associate that with the sufferings of Christ. Meanwhile, your finger is still bleeding and someone else has to put you back together. I can say this because I'm a cosmic thinker and its why writing my dissertation was so complicated."

I laughed. Of course. This explained everything. Christmas was not so much difficult as much as I took every moment and read into it. I looked at each detail with a writer's eye and processed it as it would craft itself into a scene and an incisive look at family life. When, on the other hand, my sister was simply making the holiday work, looking at me and asking, "Why can't you just help me make this happen?"

I see and celebrate connections. I love how the everyday moments expand into something else. Sometimes, this gets a little out of control. But then again, a blog can be conducive to the more abstract.

So for readers of this blog, you just need to know what you're getting into:

I'm a cosmic thinker and writer. If it gets a little abstract... I told you it would.

No comments: