Iz and Pal (Bedouin Buddies)


Iz and Pal

Jonathots Daily Blog

(4029)

Sitting Seventeen

The desert has little to offer—mainly the presence of persistence.

After Karin left Iz and Pal, they were suddenly overtaken by the sleep of exhaustion—just two boys, lying flat on their backs in the ragged remains of a tent, deeply asleep, overcome by worry and woe, welcoming the needed rest, yet nervous about the pending dreams.

And there were dreams.

Iz floated, his body upheld in a liquidy glue of moisture, suspended a few meters above his family’s home. He tried to flip himself over, to look into the windows and see Pada, but he was held down, some force holding his arms, squeezing his legs, forbidding movement. Then it was as if the glue became thicker and oozed around his nostrils, threatening to suffocate the life from him. Struggling, he loosened himself and fell, landing on the roof of his home, hearing the crack of a bone in his right leg.

Voices ascended to the rooftop where he was impaled, writhing in pain. They were mentioning his name. It was “Jubal this” and “Jubal that.” Nothing he could actually discern, nor words that were perceptible. More an angry, disapproving tone.

He was in pain. Then, all the bones in his body started to break, one by one. Gradually the agony was displaced by oblivion. He melted like a piece of ice on a hot summer’s day, his body dribbling down the walls, through the window, pooling in a puddle on the floor of his home. It seemed he was all there—eyes, nose, hands, ears. But each part separated—a toe where an ear should be, a mouth replacing a knee. Gleaming, watery, flat against the ground, he was trying to see, attempting to find Pada.

Then there was a sound—a whoosh of a broom. Dust flew around his puddle of life. He choked—coughing, wheezing. The broom was sweeping him, pushing him toward the door. He splattered down the steps of his home, gushing his life away and landed on the bottom step in a splat—but somehow, once again, whole. Free of all broken bones and molten flesh.

Iz tried to stand but could not. Instead he walked backward on his hands like a crab, reconnoitering his way into the street, which was busy with cars and buses. Yet no one saw him. No one noticed the crab boy creeping along. All at once, a giant hand wearing a yellow shirt-sleeve reached down and picked him up by his right arm, yanking him into the air and placing him at the gate of what appeared to be a great shining city—an ancient site. There was carvings of gold and statues of granite and cedar. He did not know any of the figures, just that they were large, massive and overwhelming.

The gate suddenly opened, and he heard laughter. No—giggling. It was much younger. Free, absent of trouble, broken bones and gelatin flesh. Then a dog, barking at the gate, and men with beards who came and packed him up, carrying him into the city, as a beautiful woman with long, black hair stepped forward and kissed him. It was not the smooch of a sister, but rather, the caress of a friend who would be a lover or at least as much as a twelve-year-old mind could conjure.

He was giddy with the sights and sounds. He was stimulated even more by the woman’s lips. The bearded men carried him on to a huge castle, where he entered the portals and seemed to disappear forever more.

Iz awoke with a start. It was nighttime.

There was a single candle lit, and Pal sat in the shadows, staring at him. “Did you have a dream?” he asked.

Iz was not sure whether he was awake, or if this was part of the continuing saga.

Pal spoke again. “I had a dream.”

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Cracked 5 … December 1st, 2015

 Jonathots Daily Blog

(2769)

cracked 5 logo keeper with border

Things I Don’t Want For Christmas

A. A cow donated in my name to a tribe in Africa.

 

B. Anything you made by hand with paint, glue, macaroni or “love.”

 

C. A picture of you and me together, smiling for some reason which we no longer remember.

 

D. A certificate to get anything that I don’t usually get, or will have to wait to get.

 

E. Anything I personally have to assemble.

 

Cracked 5 Best of Best

 

 

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Distinctive … May 5, 2014

Jonathots Daily Blog

(2223)

stewAs I travel the country, each and every region advertises its uniqueness by pointing out some attribute, location, cuisine, battlefield or monument that is special to the surroundings. Everyone wants me to know what makes their province sparkle.

For there is an instinct deep inside the human race to be separated off from others, with the hope that the alienation will grant some clarity or maybe even superiority.

But this is not us at our best.

We are a fussy creation when we are either critical of others or feel self-sufficiency within the boundaries of our ineptness.

As I stood in front of the delightful congregation yesterday in Henderson, Tennessee, I wanted to give them an emotional hug and tell them that it’s all right to be a part of the common sensibility.

  • It’s good to be from the South and find reasons for interaction with those from the North.
  • It’s completely permissible to be a Republican who occasionally agrees with a Democrat.
  • It is truly holy to be a Methodist who understands fellowship with a Baptist simply because of Jesus.

There are three things that make us distinctive. I must be candid. Without these three things we begin to clump together. We glue onto those who agree with us on every point, or with those who are related by birth.

Here is what I look for in people of every region:

1. Can they be touched?

Refusing to open your heart simply because you are unfamiliar with the person in front of you or they don’t have the same clothing or accent is the best way to remain lonely and vacant.

I know it’s popular to avoid emotional connection, but if you think you’re going to “zen” your way to enlightenment in your journey without fellowship with others and emotional blessing and upheaval, you really are searching for Nirvana instead of reality.

2. Can they learn?

The smartest people I know are fully aware of when to be dumb. There is no power in presenting an opinion which is stupid. There is great energy in admitting what you lack as you offer what you have.

Learning happens when we stop complaining and confess that the additional wisdom would greatly enhance our possibility.

3. And finally, can they try?

Some people can be touched and may learn, taking notes on scraps of paper, to later be discarded when they go back and return to their same drudgery.

The bravest thing you can do as a human being is try something you’ve never done before and certainly are not sure of its workability. But the denial of trying is the absence of faith, and without faith, we just sit around hoping for love.

It doesn’t matter where I travel–I look for people who can be touched, are willing to learn and ready to try.

If you can’t do this, you find yourself tripping and falling into the soup of the ignorant. If you can, you are welcome to the great human stew.

Jump on in … and add your flavor.

 

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Hunt for the Peck … August 2, 2013

Jonathots Daily Blog

(1962)

kisspeckI was sitting here trying to figure out whether it would be characterized as a disease, a fungus, a bacteria, a condition or a rash. I do know that it lasts about six months and seems to have no cure.

“It” is this handsy, saccharine preoccupation that a man and a woman have with each other when they first discover that they are romantically intrigued. For them, it is akin to reaching the peak of Mt. Everest, and for others it is an insufferable tumble from Humpty Dumpty’s wall.

The two individuals appear to be physically connected by a gooey glue, which prevents them from being apart from one another without exchanging an insipidly-placed and performed kiss. One of them could be going across the room to retrieve the gravy bowl, but it would require a moment–meaningless as it is–of connecting their lips to communicate their affection and intention to return.

I have seen it with all of my sons, when in first combat with their lovers. (I use the word “combat” because it feels more as if they are entangled in a hand-to-=hand struggle than in the expression of deep and lasting emotion.)

On top of this particular proliferation of public display of affection is a self-righteousness–“we are the only two people who have ever been in love.” To them, Romeo and Juliet were just bunk mates.

The only thing a mere mortal can do in an attempt to avoid the gagging reflex is look away.

But I think what bothers me the most about this span of illness is that the kissing done is not really kissing, but instead, this insidious peck on the lips, which is not really satisfying nor is it any smooching worthy of discussion.

Kissing demands that the lips be intricately involved, lingering and intertwined. Actually, pecking seems to be a really good name for it–it resembles two chickens attempting to remove grain from each other’s beaks. There doesn’t seem to be pleasure in it. It is symbolic, leaving both parties either yearning for more or wondering if the other person “got his teeth bumped, too.”

I think romance would have a better chance in our species if it was more honest from the onset instead of insisting that it is a red-hot meteor, which falls into a frigid cave, insisting that it plans to melt the surroundings.

Yet I am fully aware that I am speaking to the wind. There is no chance that any kind of maturity can be registered during the onslaught of this infestation. But still, there is beauty after the passage of time has allowed for recuperation, in using kissing for its real purpose, which is deep pleasure and great passion, instead of grazing the lips against another’s face, to make sure they know you wish you could do more.

So in my ongoing search–hunting for the purpose of the peck–I must say that mature love is best expressed by a twinkling eye, a squeezed hand, or fingers gently running across the back, than it is by the often-dangerous drive-by peck.

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