Tuesday, May 22, 2012

A Proactively Prodigious Posting, Perhaps?

            I think everyone gets a little intimidated at times by other people. I mean, I see it everywhere I go in life. I’m the one doing the intimidating, you see. Anyhoozer, even an awesome guy like me can start to think I’m not the greatest when a little kid can rock out this hard. He probably gets more Huggies thrown to the stage in one show than I did in all of preschool. He looks like a real-life version of a movie scene where the underdog receives what he thought was outside help, but turns out to be only water, or the device was turned off.  I mean, look at him, he’s constantly looking around for Professor Smiley Goodhelp and his remote limb-controlling Rock Band drumset.
            When there’re little kids like this that are already that good at activities they’re going to hate their parents for pushing on them later in life, there’s no arguing that some people are just born being good at things. If they’re good enough, we call these people prodigies. Mozart, Bobby Fisher, and Encyclopedia Brown are all famous prodigies in all forms of media. Only one of them didn’t die alone and insane, so here’s to you, Mozart!
"Switching hands with the devil" was only put on that
wheel as a sign of good faith.
            It’s as if there exists some force in the universe that allows certain people to be amazing at activities, mostly unpracticed, while others remain woefully and father-disappointingly inept at them, no matter how hard they work. In other words, the universe plays favorites. That’s pretty dickish. So, in the spirit of not being dickish, I’ve conceived a theory concerning prodigies. It’s not a matter of the universe picking certain people for talents, but instead inside each person is a large pegged wheel, with every conceivable action painted on the wheel’s sections. At birth, the wheel is given a spin by whatever angel was lucky enough to get down to Contestant’s Row, and the plastic arrow ends up pointing at whatever obscure and mundane activity that person will be a prodigy at. I mean, some of the sections on the wheel point to the usual, like piano or drums, or spinning plates on sticks, but most are such small activities that they can go overlooked. Maybe you’re a prodigy at some of these and just don’t know it. Why not give them a try and see if you’re not touring the late night show circuit in two years?
            Here are some activities that you could be a prodigy at and just not know it yet:

-Finding light switches in the dark.
-Putting the USB connection in the correct way the first time.
-Accidentally speaking in haiku.
-Using great Google search terms to find exactly what you need.
-Remembering where your keys are.
-Guessing channel listings in strange cities.
-Effortless alphabetization.
-Making really delicious Shirley Temples.
-Impressions of the Founding Fathers, vocal wise.
-Writing entries in your journal that would really emotionally touch and inspire strangers who read it.
-Lumberjack games (tree climb, log river roll).
This could be inside you! (But probably isn't)
-Assembling a trampoline with ease.
-Finding the ends on rolls of tape.
-Neat and tidy envelope or gift wrap opening.
-Falling asleep very quickly on uncomfortable mattresses.
-The passive voice is easily avoided by you.
-Convincingly good at over-explaining jokes.
-Inventing great fonts.
-Signing out of Skype at the end of the night.
-Leaving great voicemails.
-Giving pre-roller coaster safety instructions.
-Never breaking pencils during sharpening.
"It's in your blood, Billy! I've seen pencil sharpening like this
 only once before, and that was by your father!"
-Pointing the remote to the right spot on the TV.
-Competitive luging.
-Going down stairs quickly yet quietly.

Finally, one that I think I may be a prodigy at- knowing when a premise gets tired.

He ain’t no prodigal son,

Mick Dickinson.  

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