It is more than an honor to be a new addition to Christina Pirello’s extended family. When I first met Christina, I knew the Universe was talking to me. True, I hadn’t taken my medication in several days. But something told me this wasn’t just another one of my usual cosmic hallucinations, as I call them. No, something special was happening. That moment when I crossed the threshold, stepping foot into Christina’s living room/office/playroom/energy hub, I recognized the distinctive, scintillating sound of two old souls meeting up again. When her husband, Robert, popped in and stuck a double espresso in my hand, I knew it was kismet.
Maybe it was the caffeine and the exhilarating rebelliousness of spiking our blood sugar so wantonly. Or it could have been the smell of Christina’s famous cookies baking in all their vegan glory right there in the heart of South Philly, announcing to the world that Amos ain’t so famous any more (even the vegan cookies in South Philly have attitude, you know). The three of us had so much to say to each other all at once, we barely let the other finish a sentence.
The world opened up before my eyes. I glimpsed the symmetry of things. I believe in the symmetry of the world, and I search it out. Or perhaps is searches us all out? Symmetry happens when people and place, past and present, suddenly align to make everything seem smooth and easy. Our world is as replete with symmetry as Sorrento is with lemon trees. Symmetry is there for the picking. It flourishes everywhere, and we can feed off it.
So with all this symmetry around me all the time, why do I feel so fragmented? Why am I always so dizzy? Shane -- my intuitive, more spiritual half and modern day Quetzalcoatl– tells me it’s because the Mayan calendar is coming to an end, and aren’t I silly for not recognizing the obvious symmetry in that? Shane says she’s been telling me this for at least the last thousand years, and why can’t I hurry up and get it already. For my part, I have yet to meet a Mayan who survived, and I am reserving final judgment until I bump into one. To which Shane always laughs, replying that Mayans certainly do exist… theirs is the spirit of Maca and Caçao. Silly me.
Wait a minute… caçao? I am told only philistines say “cocoa” any more. A few years ago, I asked for “cocoa” nibs in Whole Foods, and they nearly laughed me out the door. Then again, I also asked for Sweet-n-Low for my coffee. Some dude in Birkenstock’s squealed and fainted on the spot (luckily, he landed safely on a bed of seitan). When I was growing up, chia was a novelty toy. Now it has eclipsed bran which, I am told, is terribly medieval. I’m getting dizzy.
Robert Pirello tells me I am a New Yorker and therefore spiritually constipated. Being a new Yorker, I blame it all on my parents. Forget about chicken soup, he advises; I need chia for my soul. That, and run in the park five miles a day. I try to tell him that the last time I ran in the park, I was chased by five guys dressed like the Village People. He also tells me the Village People are gay. I am dizzy again.
No doubt Christina finds me as amusing as Shane and her husband do. In fact, the three of them gang up on me for fun. I am meal-time entertainment, and dinner with me is cheaper than going to a comedy club. It took them ten minutes to stop laughing when I admitted I was a Stevia virgin until the age of forty. Please don’t tell the guys in my fantasy football league.
I understand it, though. I find symmetry everywhere, and yet it seems to elude me. That’s why I launching this blog. I believe we are all – to various extents – alienated from ourselves and set adrift on a sea of products, ideologies, and lies that offer little nourishment for our soulful selves. Like a castaway, we are surrounded by water, yet we cannot drink. Truth + Accountability will set us free.
I can’t deny it any more. I am asleep, somnambulant like so many others who sleepwalk through life missing all the symmetry in the process. I am no different. And so Caught Napping is my tiny contribution to the quest for symmetry. I will attempt to catch people napping when they could otherwise be helping rid the world of Not Food and anything else that pushes us farther away from ourselves.