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Tricia McCallum is a Toronto freelance writer and also publishes fiction and poetry.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Predict Nothing.

Contradictions abound in people. It’s always been at the core of why I find them so fascinating.

Take me, for instance. When it comes to food I turn contradiction into an art form.

I will not drink a cup of coffee unless I have a pack of Splenda on hand yet at 10:30 last evening I consumed a microwaved mélange of mini-marshmallows, chocolate chips, a box of Duncan Hines uncooked fudge brownie mix and a soupcon of Dalton’s sweetened shredded coconut. (That counted as my fruit for the day.)

I am not alone in my curious juxtapositions.

Consider Clint Eastwood. He detests violence, criticizes its use in movies and politically supports gun control. To further confound people’s perceptions Eastwood writes haunting love songs, this beautiful one sung by Diana Krall called “Why Should I Care.”

And this, the theme of the movie Bridges of Madison County:

On to John Wayne, who hated horses. Wayne had learned to ride when he was young, so by the time he started making cowboy pictures, he was already fed up with it. In the book John Wayne: The Man Behind the Myth, Wayne is quoted as saying, "I still hate riding horses. I go by truck everywhere I can."

Dr. Seuss (his real name was Theodor Geisel; the "doctor" was just a joke), was in reality “terrified” of children, for what he called their “unpredictability.” Never had any, never married.

Here’s to contradiction and the unexpected, knowing that none of us are so easily categorized. And here’s my (somewhat related)poem

Be quiet: You’re talking.

Tell me something I don’t know.
That there are insects that can fly through the rain
without getting wet,
That wild optimism usually masks deep despair,
Bing Crosby owned the first tape recorder in America,
Einstein failed math
And Esther Williams hated the water.

That astronauts have the highest divorce rate,
Redheads need more anaesthetic than others,
Left handed people die younger,
That tears of grief have a chemical composition
different from all others,
Emily Dickinson didn’t leave her room for 12 years,
And Chinese doctors examine a patient’s tongue

Enlighten me.
Fill me with awe.
Share things incandescent.
Or stop talking.


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