Saturday, June 23, 2012

Thinking, dried up, mixed, jarred and served with everything.

We all collect stuff, a pot here, a scarf there. The object appears and becomes part of our decor. Mostly, we collect what is right at hand, including stuff we ingest, or stuff that becomes part of our thinking.

These herbs, marjoram, thyme, mint, parsley,  happen to grow well here, and are perennial for the most part. I gathered a bunch a few weeks ago, dried them by hanging them upside down over my kitchen counter, and then, crumbled and stuffed them in an empty jar.

I will use this mixture to season everything when fresh herbs are not available.
This is my lazy method of adding spice and flavor to my meals.
Last year, I had lavender, oregano, dill, and sage growing in abundance.

This is mostly how we come to decide what to think about things, in our daily lives. As a matter of fact, the science suggests that we decide impulsively, and then come up with a rationale to justify our decisions.

We gather what's available around us; people, books, magazines, television, music, movies, neighbors and friends from childhood, and all these ideas percolate and mix with other ideas, getting sorted out based on our daily needs and experiences.

When we are thirty or so, we hear ourselves say the same stuff our grandparents said to our mothers. We tend to vote like them, and like them, we watch the same television shows, go out to eat at the same types of establishments, and so, after a while, all these habits and thoughts become part of what we have become. We have become liberal or conservative, religious or not, for this or that cause, mainly based on what thoughts were shared around us as we grew up.

Now, that sounds grim and depressing. We want to be in charge of our own thinking, right?
Think of how much time and energy  you invest in researching goods and services before you decide to purchase or hire people. Do you go out of your way to gather opinions that are not like yours?

And that's the rub!

We use what we know and have already, like the mix of herbs I have.
We trust our instincts, right or wrong.
We are more impulsive than we admit.

Ugh! I guess we have to trust someone else to do the research and give us the results.


  1. Replies
    1. We are afraid of hoarding, being run by things. But things we collect define our priorities, don't they?
      I gave away Brian's things to his friends who'd use them and appreciate them. I kept his writings, his school stuff, and all the notes he kept from me!
      That he kept those notes was a miracle!

  2. Magazines, books, every thoughtful thought I ever scribbled on a snippet of paper, photos, napkins, various assortments of plates, cups, bowls, photos, old toys, clothes - can't throw those out, they still fit - the day will come that all will be reread again or will serve a special purpose again. And I won't even get started with the garage content! The kids would be overjoyed to so easily and cruelly throw it all out, but they know by now that a kind of deep persistent loathing towards them will be my response.

    Maybe it's because I burned everything, except for the essentials that fit into my luggage, when I left Germany. Now it's hard to let go of anything. So I have lugged what accumulated over decades across continents and from home to home. Yup, it's hard exhausting work! Oh the material things our hearts get attached to! And they say, clutter outside equals the clutter inside. Help! (But not from my kids, please.)

    1. Oh, Helga,I understand too well.
      Some things we carry forever, their importance known only to us. Our children, they have shallow roots.

  3. Replies
    1. Yeah, now and then we actually break our patterns. New friends do that!

  4. and so we have to keep pushing ourselves and asking of ourselves and looking to others.

    just the other day i said to james that i hoped i might meet someone from another culture or set of beliefs. heck, i said, even from another family. families are cultures, aren't they! and i said, i want to be introduced to new ways of thinking that i've never considered, new ways of seeing in the world. god, how i yearn for this, to be asked to see with new eyes beyond what is comfortable and expected from myself. we must rise to meet these challenges or we must expect to not quite grow.

    i thought of you today, rosaria. i brought my mother to the hospital. she has been in and out lately and needing serious attention but has been denied. all around us bodies were failing but spirits were so undeniably beautiful and alive. i thought of you and i thought of brian and inside of this brief time of ours, i hoped for us all.


    1. Just by falling in love we open ourselves to new thinking! I'm happy you and James found each other. Thanks for thinking of me, Erin.

    2. I could not agree more. Age actually serves as grouping tool or a major determining factor wherein one's preference to food, movie, books and even company.

  5. I had a yearning in this next phase (retired) to be exposed to different- different people, different culture, different values. So, even as I scratch my head and try to understand these people of Italy, I confront myself and y limitations daily and hope to expand into a bigger self. Wish me luck.