Thursday, July 18, 2013

Brains and Books: More Correspondence About Cussler

My brain is made out of super-sticky butyl-backed tape. I used some of this tape today, so that's how I know. I've witnessed the properties first-hand; the chemical compounds are the same. Once you pull off the backing paper [from the tape], you have to be very careful what it touches. If it sticks to something you don't want it stuck to, you will have a hell of a time removing it. When you get it where you want it, it is effective indeed.

Once I get an idea in my head - for better or worse - it is stuck. Often the idea is a dead end or a distraction and I know it. This makes no difference. It is already too late. The tenacity of the bond will cause focus bordering on obsession and I might as well forget about sleep. This has worked to my benefit on many occasions. I've saved money, quit jobs, learned about bicycles, traveled by bicycle, and purchased a box truck on a credit card. In my youth I hunted and gathered a low-level-famous collection of Mad Magazines that would be impressive for the efforts of an adult, let alone a 6th-grader. Later in life, I created, and still my brain holds a giant catalog of information about portion control sachets (as the industry likes to call them.) None of this might have happened without a brain as sticky as butyl-backed tape.

The issue is one of control. I have little or no control over what my brain sticks to. If I could aim my focus at learning a language or studying the law, I might find a better return on investment than, say, spending hours per day tracking down tartar sauce packets in the Czech Republic and convincing somebody to send them to me.

If nothing else, I am happy to accomplish something rather than nothing. I am happy with who I am, even if I am sometimes frustrated that I am unable to deploy my go-go-gadget brain-tape with any semblance of aim. I'm already on this ride, so I might as well enjoy it. It is on this note that I bring you the latest installment from my growing files of Cussler-correspondence. I bring you now to my latest text-based bid to amuse myself.

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