April 24, 2012

The Plight of the Parallelobus

Ever seen one of those gooey, drooly babies play those mind numbing games they play?
You know… the ones where they have colorful shaped pegs and the little twits have to put the round peg through the round hole into the box.
And then the square peg through the square hole into the box.
And then the triangular peg through the triangular hole into the box.
And then the star shaped peg ….
You get the point.

Have you watched them?
Have you seen a bigger waste of time on God's precious earth?
How annoying is it to wait for them to figure out something that stupid?
And if you take all the pegs out of the box and make them start over- they would've forgotten everything.
And they keep stubbornly trying to shove the triangle through the round hole.
And Again.
And again.
And, OH-MY-GOD again.
And they keep trying.
They then they hit the box with their freakishly small spongy hands.
And then they drool.
And then they put the peg into their mouths.
And then the whole thing is covered in their slimy saliva.
And then they drool some more.
And then they wail, just for fun.
And then they drool even more.
I repeat.

The more perceptive readers will realize I'm not very fond of human babies.
Dog babies, I love.
Cow babies, I adore.
Pigeon babies, I can tolerate.
Human babies, I loathe.

Anyway, the post today isn't about human babies and their evilness.
Not today.
Today, its about the game.
The peg-in-the-hole game.
And, of course, it has one of those world famous Pious Hippie life analogies.

So, here's what I'm saying today.

We are like those little pegs.
Some of us are circles, some are triangles or squares.
Some could even be pentagons and hexagons and decagons.

We're each some kind of peg.
We start out as a circle and keep adding corners to ourselves through life.
Each of us have a certain number of corners.
And our choices, both good and bad determine the number of corners we have.

If you deviate from the norm, take a risk to follow your heart, do something that's considered 'bold', you add a corner.
So in kindergarten, when everyone was drawing the pretty flowers and you drew an army tank-
you grew a corner.
In high school, when everyone was trying out for the basketball team and you signed up for the teddy-bear making class- you grew another corner.
Later in life, when everyone else started working in jobs they didn't like and you decided to quit-
 you grew corner.
Every time you tried something that many others wouldn't - you grew a corner.

Pretty simple, so far, right?!?

Moving on.

Just like there's fire where there's smoke, there are holes where there are pegs.
I have officially copy written the statement above.
It may well be one of the smartest things I've said in my life.

It's pretty obvious that the more corners you have, the weirder your shape will be.
And the weirder your shape is, the harder it is to find your hole.
I have officially disowned the statement above.
It may well be one of the weirdest things I've said in my life.

Every time I mention 'hole', just remember the context of the game.
The pegs.
And their corresponding holes.
Context people.

And then the next character in the plot- the baby.

The baby is society.
The judgmental aunt.
The snooty ex-best friend.
The cousin who won't stop showing off.
The uncle who won't stop giving you unsolicited advice.

That’s right.
You heard me.
The baby is society.
And I used the word unsolicited.
Just in case you didn't notice that there.

Why do I think so?!?

Who keeps trying to shove the poor little pegs into holes they don't belong in?
Who keeps pummeling them into submission?
Who can't make out the difference between three corners and four?
Who drools over everything under the sun?
Okay the last question was baby specific.
Nothing to do with society.
But seriously, WHAT is the deal with the drooling.
It's like they're aliens with over-active spit glands that want to drown the world in baby saliva.

After some careful analysis and observation I've realized I have about 6 corners. But not in the symmetrical sense. I'm not a neat little hexagon.

I'm like a mixture of a parallelogram and a rhombus.
I'm a parallolobus.
Or maybe a Rhomogram.
I feel like a parallelobus, though.
Sometimes I think I even look like one.

And guess what?!?
The parallelobus shaped hole is HARD to find.
And the baby keeps shoving me into the square hole.
And pushing and shoving.
And drooling all over me.

And it's beginning to annoy me.
And I'm beginning to wonder if I should have grown out all these corners.
Wouldn't I be better off being a regular square?
The baby would have fit me into the right hole- I would be safe and secure in the gleaming plastic box with all the other squares.

Pun intended.

By the way, I've never been good at puns.
And that one above, is a masterpiece, even if I say so myself.
Which I do.
I'm saying it loud and clear.
I'll shout it off a mountain top.

Not finding my corresponding parallelobus hole is making me feel more and more like a failure.
I know it exists. Everyone has a hole to go through.
But it takes time to find it.

And the baby, every time it drools over you or tries to squeeze you into the wrong hole makes you feel like a failure. Each corner you grew out begins to feel like a mistake. Your unique shape begins to feel like a curse.

And all of this has introduced me to a new kind of failure.
Or well, the second installment of it.
The sequel, if you will.

The first part of failure is when you grow out a corner- coz not everything 'bold' you try turns out the way you want it to.
So when I drew the army tank, it wasn't particularly appreciated by Ms. Thompson- my art teacher.
Or when I quit work, it may not have been the best career decision in the world.
Or trying to open a coffee shop could be construed as a major mistake.

You try something new, it fails.
I can live with that.
I tried my hand at home accessory design, I failed.
Fair enough.
I can live with that.

The second part, like the sequel to a good horror movie, is a LOT scarier.
And you're a lot less prepared for it.
And you scream twice as loud.
And your heart thumps three times faster.
And you get nightmares for eight more months.
And you sleep in your parents room for two more years.

In the first part you just grow out the extra corner -
by trying something different.
The second part is when the evil, drooling baby comes in to the picture.

That’s when society starts poking fun at you.
That's when your ex-best friend begins looking at you with pity.
That's when your uncle begins telling you to get serious with your life.
That's when people start scrutinizing all your past decisions and identifying "loopholes", even when you don't ask them to.
That's when you find yourself drowning in a flood with unwanted advice from all the other squares and triangles.
Pun intended again.

Okay fine.
That wasn't a pun.
I knew that.

For example, Van Gogh did a bunch of really random things.
He probably had a bajillion corners.
And I think, when he shot himself, it was probably because he thought no hole existed for a peg with a bajillion corners.
It was only much much later on, that the baby (society) realized that there IS a hole with a bajillion corners- just - its real hard to find.
The baby probably grew to about 64 years old before it realized how stupid it was.

Just to clarify though, that if you're looking for pointers on what to do when you're watching the scarier sequel, this post isn't going to help.

This post is more of a warning.

A warning about the dangers lurking outside the gleaming plastic box.
A warning about the dangers of growing the extra corner.

A warning about, basically, the fact that in growing out the extra corner you:
  1. Take a risk of failing (the original movie)
  2. Hand over the right to the baby to shove you into holes that don't fit, drool over you, scratch and scathe you and, maybe, hide you under a sofa cushion for the rest of your life (the sequel).
If you thought that growing out that extra corner was brave, you got another think coming.

So all I'm trying to say, is that I'm beginning to doubt the value in my extra corners and I've had limited luck in finding my hole, thus far.

Again, context people.

That hole is basically my passageway to the other side of the glorious plastic box of society where acceptance abounds amidst the colorful circles, squares and triangles.
The simpler life.
Sometimes, you're JUST not a square you know?
You want to be.
You want to just get the hell over with it, but you can't just CUT off your extra corner.
You can't change what you are.
Even if you want to.

I wish my life was as simple as graduating from college, finding a job, getting a masters degree, getting a better job, getting married and having kids.

What if you're destined to be a darned parallelobus?
What if God wanted me to do all the random things I've done?
What if God doesn't WANT me to get a job, get married and have kids?

Does that mean I'm destined to have a wet squishy hand hold me all the time because it just can't deal with a parallelobus? Does that mean I'm destined to be covered in baby spit?!  

I guess this is a public service announcement of sorts, where I caution people about the perils of the extra corner. About the difficulties of finding the right hole.

I don't know how it will all end.

I could end up finding my way through the hole to acceptance wonderland.
Like many weird shapes have done.

Or I could land up under the couch with old forgotten pennies, popcorn and dust mites where even Bruno, the family dog, wouldn't be able to reach me.
Only time will tell if the extra corner was eventually worth it.

But don't say I didn't warn ya.

You're welcome.
That's what I'm here for!
That and saving the world from glandular aliens that hide themselves in human baby mouths.
Also, saving the world in general.

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The Pious Hippie by Ms. Pious Hippie is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.