Saturday, February 12, 2011

Custard well-being

My friend, J, is very wise. Also weird. But this post acknowledges her wisdom. (Her quirkiness will be paid homage to in times to come.)

Sometimes, she overflows with sage advice. Then, the cool fount of her sensibility spills on to you and you are better for it. Sometimes, she sprays insight. Usually, this is unforeseen, so one might duck or get out of the way. That is a mistake. If you let the drizzle settle on to you, you may just get one of those rare things, i.e. – a perspective.

The other day I had called J to talk. I was feeling dark or depressed or disillusioned or one of those brethren emotions. (I forget the specifics because I am in the seat of such calm joy at this moment.) J said many things and also compared me to a wild flower in the Amazon jungle that spits out poisonous darts. Given that I had always thought of myself as a regular bougainvillea, the comparison to such a radical botanical specimen puzzled me. However, confusion with J is sort of de rigeur. They go together. Like an asterisk with the ‘conditions apply’ footnote. You see one, you know what’s coming.

Anyway, our conversation ended with her telling me that ‘the Universe loves you’. (Here ‘you’ means ‘me’. Although J’s magnanimity on this account encompasses all humanity.) Now, this is a remarkable aspect of J. She talks about Universe the way one would fondly talk of one’s grandmother. There is much love, affection, and gentle acceptance of all its little foibles. J shares such a strong, serene connection to this phantasmagorical notion that one…believes. It's like this - I may never have seen my grandparents. But listening to J, I can imagine that a grandmum will love like hers does. Or all grandmums get to the point only after a good period of rambling. Or any grandmum will hug you tight if you stand meekly in front of her.

Anyway, conversation over, I went back to do some thinking. Maybe the Universe does love me. But perhaps it is keeping its distance. I mean, who wants to get hurt by poisonous darts, right? And the Universe is all-pervading. So, it’ll pretty much get hit in any direction I look.

Having ironed out the knots in my alienation theory, I slept.

Today, I finished some work an hour past midnight. There was a weird, surreal emptiness. It was time for a trip to the fridge. Usually, a glass of juice is what I make do with. The intense tart, sweet, packaged taste helps me make sense of the world. At least the one I inhabit now.

Then I saw something. Custard being set for tomorrow’s lunch. I took a bowl and helped myself to some. Turns out, it wasn’t just custard. It was a nice, thick layer of custard coating raspberry jelly that was set with a medley of fruits. It looked pretty when I scooped out a nice share on to my bowl. It tasted a little tart, though. On rummaging further, I found some whipped cream and a fistful of Fruity Loops. So, I drowned my jelly-fruit-custard scoop with the cream and arranged each sugar-frosted loop onto it.

It looked so pretty, colorful and elegant – like summertime in Paris. It looked like something Audrey Hepburn would help herself to with a tiny spoon, maybe at Tiffany’s.

I tasted it again and J’s words came singing through my palate.

Grandma loves me.


omnithere said...

..and never, ever not believe that.. :)

Anonymous said...

yes, she does!