Every day I check the news and every day ads pass before my eyes or over my ears and I think “Boy, I am just about the most Not The Target Market that anyone could be,” and then the next day comes with its news and ads and I find am even morer not the target. And it’s always louder than the day before. I don’t know if this is to make everyone feel included (you know how you always shout at people who don’t speak your language) or if it’s just to bludgeon us all to death so we stop protesting. I am reminded here of the Dorothy Sayers novel The Nine Tailors in which the villain is (accidently) murdered (spoiler alert) by being locked into a bell tower while a peal is being rung. He is overwhelmed by the sound and dies with face contorted in horror.
I picture the producers of all this noise and drama as cortical homunculi (if that is the plural of homunculus).
A cortical homunculus is (definition courtesy of Wikipedia, which for all the derision thrown at it, does occasionally do a good job as shown by this clear definition) a distorted representation of the human body, based on a neurological “map” of the areas and proportions of the human brain dedicated to processing motor functions, or sensory functions, for different parts of the body.
Just the image for thenews and ads and outrage and nattering: All mouth and hands, the better to shout and grasp, my dear. Can’t you just picture millions of these little creatures climbing up piles of other little creatures, shouting, pushing, pulling their way to the top, only to be tumbled down the pile moments later by the next little creature that has bit and clawed its way up? You wonder why the world was so noisy – well, now you know.
However, I don’t want to talk about any of this – the noise or the homunculi. They do enough of that themselves. I want to tell you a story about honey of the sort that runs around on two little legs giving hugs and kisses.
It was a very cold and snowy day and The Moose and I were playing in the cellar. He rides his bike; we run around; we blow bubbles; he explores the tools and all the other cool stuff that ends up in a cellar – in short it is one of his very favorite playgrounds.
We always spend a little time in our fort under the stairs. The front wall of this fort is made up of extra folding tables braced between a lally column and the stairs. One side is open and the other is closed in by the back of the extra drinks cabinet – home to tonic, soda, and various odd bottles of this and that.
The extra drinks cabinet is about three feet tall, and I noticed an unlabeled bottle I didn’t remember seeing before, sitting on the top. It was filled with some light amber colored liquid. I called over to The Hunter, who was also in the cellar, if he knew what was in it. The conversation went like this:
Me (from under the stairs): Do you know what is in this bottle?
The Hunter (coming from the workbench): What bottle?
I pointed out the unlabeled mystery bottle and before I could say anything else, The Moose piped up: It’s honey.
The Moose: It’s honey.
I will admit it looked like honey, but you have to understand that this Moose is two and a half and doesn’t talk all that much. He understands everything, but he is a man of few words, and those he has, he uses sparingly. So hearing him pipe up like that was a bit staggering.
While I was being staggered, The Hunter checked out the bottle and announced: It’s Scotch.
The Moose repeated: Cotch. (Adding a new word to his repertoire.)
Then, to show us he thoroughly understood the concept of “Cotch”, he left our fort and ran over to a case of Spencer Trappist Ale. He picked up a bottle and pronounced it “Cotch.”
I do hope his parents are impressed with the education I am providing.