The Unexpected Edition
The Short Story - Issue 19 - August.2021
This week, it’s all about the unexpected. We’ve been dealing with a bit of that lately, huh?
Pandemic > Vaccine > Less pandemic? > SuRPrIsE! More PANDEMIC in a bold new flavor!
The Delta variant is like the Cool Ranch Doritos of pandemics. No one asked for it, no one wanted it, no one likes it, yet here it is — an affront to all that is good in the world and ruining your summer fun. Exactly like Cool Ranch Doritos.
So, let’s not think about all that and instead anticipate happenstance, embrace the unknowable, and find ourselves basking in serendipity in The Unexpected Edition.
Ready for Anything
First, an admission — I’m not great with surprises or the unexpected. I love being surprised, but I hate anticipating the unknown. I’ve spent a lot of money on therapy to discover that simple fact. I also LOVE spoilers. You can’t ruin a show for me by telling me how it’s gonna end, I want to know NOW so that I can prepare myself. Is Loki gonna be okay?? Will they ever leave Schmigadoon? Will Ted Lasso’s team ever win a game??
I strongly need to know the unknowable if there’s any chance at all of knowing it.
As I’ve been pondering the unexpected this week, I’ve had to accept that while not knowing leaves me uncomfortable, not all surprises are bad. In fact, in their book, Surprise: Embrace the Unpredictable and Engineer the Unexpected, Luna and Renninger argue that surprise is a vital part of the human experience, works as part of the dopamine reward system, and can help enrich our lives.
Speaking of dopamine rewards, I just discovered that fore-edge painting was a thing and I LOVE IT.
Like, I waaaaay love it. I already love books, but books with secret paintings hidden in the gilded edges that only show up when the pages are bent just so?? *swoon*
I was researching a totally different topic, probably something about why Cool Ranch Doritos even exist, when I discovered this video about fore-painting and well, finding it was just serendipity.
Good Surprise / Bad Surprise
I was mindlessly scrolling Facebook last week when I unexpectedly learned that most Muppets are left-handed.
What a cute and pleasant surprise.
One of my cats, Athens, however, is not cute or pleasant. He’s sort of weird and bite-y. In fact, a few years ago, I was trying to record some poems for a grad school project when out of nowhere he attacked a piece of sound foam in the studio and then ran over and bit my leg for NO REASON. Fortunately, my husband/audio engineer recorded the whole thing. So, if you’ve ever wanted to hear me unexpectedly get bit by a cat while on the mic, now’s your chance!
Bad surprise, bad cat.
I recently discovered book nooks and I’m obsessed with these tiny worlds hidden in bookcases.
There’s an entire subreddit dedicated to them. They’re freaking amazing.
I love hidden rooms, tiny or otherwise. One day, I intend to hide my writing room behind a wall of bookcases with a secret door. Wait, now everyone who comes over will just start pushing on all my bookcases… So, I’m definitely NOT going to hide my totally cool, secret room behind bookcases. Those are all just normal bookcases. Keep walking.
I had no idea so many places had secret rooms. I was reading 23 Super Secret Spaces Hidden in Famous Landmarks and I mean, I assumed The Vatican was full of secrety stuff, but I had no idea how weird the room behind Mount Rushmore was.
Okay, that’s about it for this week! I hope you’ve had fun facing the unexpected with me! I think we’ve done about as well as can be expected.
You totally expected this though, right?
Until next time,
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