Things I Don’t Understand

Have you ever noticed the further along the evolutionary path we go the odder things get?

Back in the Stone Age good ole Org would pat his wife Oog on the head, grab his trusty cudgel from the umbrella stand and head on out for a rousing day of blipping mastodons and other slow moving creatures. How simple that life was; short though it must have been with the ever present chance of
becoming a skid mark under the right foot of a slightly pissed off woolly mammoth or post lunch snack for a sabre tooth tiger.

At the end of the day Org would return with all his buddies, dragging behind chunks of whatever they had been fortunate enough to catch. Oog would then heap a few more logs on the fire and toss the gamey haunch of dinner aboard for a smoky simmer.

After dinner perhaps a little slap and tickle with Oog or a friendly session of picking lice out of each others hair; then it is time to drag that big old tree in front of the cave door and settle in for a snooze.

No Armani suits, no HOV lanes on the freeway (is someone who uses the HOV lanes a HOVER?), no cellphones and fax machines, not a lawnmower or leaf rake in site. Why save the definite lack of Dunkin’ Donuts Apple Fritters this could be the utopia we have been looking for for all these years! Wouldn’t that be ironic as hell?

We are not so lucky in our modern, evolved world. Somewhere between Org trotting off to work in the morning and me sitting here at keyboard something has gone incredibly awry in the understanding department. While we were evolving we seem to have lost our brain centre that controls the ‘What the hell is this REALLY for?’ function. Or perhaps it has just become slightly vestigial.

Perhaps that in itself is an evolutionary process. We lost the WTHITRF brain centre as a defense mechanism against the truth about Frosted Flakes and why they are addicting (They are by the way; I have the slightly mouldy bowls of milk stashed under my desk to prove it). But i am fighting back; reversing the evolutionary process singlehandedly by compiling a list of things I do not understand.

I have been compiling my list for quite some time now; scribbling notes to myself on the corner of napkins, or in my journal; sometimes on the palm of my hand. The latter doesn’t work especially well. After cleaning Myrrh’s litter box, groping around under my desk for my shoes (or lunch), a few trips to the loo (washing afterwards – be nice now!) and a couple sinks full of dishes (great guy eh?) what remains of my earthshattering note to myself is either be a juju incantation in Swahili or a note to the chef at my local chinese restaurant asking why they call it Poo-Poo Platter. I have to admit I hide my list most secretively, in fear that my lack of understanding will be cause for whisking me away to one of those padded pink rooms you read about in True Detective or Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine. Heaven forbid anyone were to find one of my notes; why I suspect the Immigration and Naturalization Service would be at my door the following morning with an edict to remove my sorry arse from the premises before I infect the local populace.

Imagine explaining, to a 6’4″, 240 pound sheriff, a note asking why the seeds in Blackberry Jam
never settle to the bottom of the jar? This has been a curiousity of mine for many years. Defying both gravity and good manners these wee dental destroyers float about suspended in the jam waiting for just the right moment to leap off my toast and fracture one of my fillings. But to the sheriff the note must most assuredly be a Communist spy note, the jam a metaphor for Bill Clinton and the seed… well I will leave that one to your imagination. Or perhaps it is ‘hacker code’ for a new Denial of Service attack on Yahoo. In either event it would be expeditious to remove this malcontent from the country; depositing him amongst the polar bears and igloos north of the border where he certainly couldn’t do any civilized person any harm.

So I squirrel away my notes of misunderstanding in odd places, collecting them like Gollum until one day I may bring them out into a more enlightened world where people DO ask why it is that the toilet roll MUST be installed with the paper feeding over the top. Or why on the dishwasher do we bother to fill those little cups on the door with Sunlight Liquid rather than just poking the bottle inside and giving a healthy squirt up and down? It seemed logical to me.

My list is becoming quite long now, approximately 1500 entries, and I figure by the time I hand over the reins of this job I should well have amassed at least a million entries. Everything from why mothers tell their kids NOT to eat the apple core to why ANYONE in their right mind would saddle a poor defenseless kid with the name Zebulon. In between I shall explore the minor nuances of misunderstanding such as who decided we should pull down on the turn signal lever for a left turn rather than push up. After all we flick the light switch in the house up to turn on the light. Or why a 3 and a half inch floppy disk is 3 and a half inches rather than 3 and one quarter inches (it’s predecessor after all was a 5 and one quarter inch disk).

When my list is done it will spark a world wide revolution; people coming out of the misunderstanding closet to ask ‘Why?’ Children will stop on the street and point at me in my infirmity and age and whisper “There goes the man who asked why’…

And I will be left with only one misunderstanding…

How did Hollywood know that Org was right handed?

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