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June 7th, 2013

SLIGHTLY OFF THE MARK


           The problem with adults is that we’re not kids.

           Specifically, we lose that wonder, that joy of discovery that comes with being kids. The coolest things happen right in front of us, but because they happen every year and we’ve seen a lot of years, we forget how cool they are.

           One day you walk outside and, after months of gray, black, and white, everything is green. Spring is here. That’s so cool. Have you seen all those colors, the flower blossoms and such? For a few weeks, my back yard was a wall of purple lilacs. The lush grass looks as if last year’s drought never happened. There’s a family of rabbits living in the brush pile I was supposed to get rid of. It’s all awesome, except the brush pile.

           Last spring a bird I’d never seen just showed up, walking across my lawn as if it owned the place. Based on internet photos, I think it was a quail. Maybe it was a henway.

           (What’s a henway? About five pounds.)

           I’m not a bird watcher like the eminent Neil Case, but I think he and I still maintain something from our childhoods: We both think seeing something in person that we’ve never seen before is just … neat.
         
But the same stuff over again can be neat, too. I realize this depends largely on what the stuff is, and on the circumstances. If you were in London 50 years ago and saw a police call box, you wouldn’t think anything about it. If one materialized in your back yard and a time traveler hopped out, it would definitely be noteworthy.Collapse )

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