“In many situations there are (at least) two selves fighting inside each of us: The rational, adult self encounters a problem or a certain situation and says: You’ve been here before. You’ve already experienced this sort of person, situation, or difficulty. So handle it based on what happened before; Take what you learned in the past and apply it. Do this and this. Simple.
The other self wails no, no— this is new! It’s entirely different. I don’t know how to deal with it at all. I’ve never met someone this wonderful but I’m terrified I’ll do something wrong and lose them. Or I’ve never encountered anything this confusing or dangerous or challenging. I’m at a total loss for what to do about it. Paralyzed. That’s me, frozen in its headlights.
No matter how often life repeats itself, a part of us always clenches and says in a scared voice, “This is brand new to me. What do I do now?””—Jonathan Carroll
“The first time they went to bed, he entered the room and she said “You’re wearing a different watch.”
He glanced at it, as if seeing the black rubber thing on his wrist for the first time. He said tentatively, “It’s my night watch.”
“You change watches before going to bed?”
“Yes. Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night and want to know what time it is. This one has a very bright dial.”
Looking at her dark nail polish, he wished they weren’t having this conversation. “Why do I want to know what time it is?”
“Yes.” She was smiling at him. Not with him— *at* him. A moment ago things were sexy. Now they were funny. He was hoping a quick right answer would make things sexy again.
“I don’t know. To see how much more time I have left to sleep.”
Her smile grew to the size of a frisbee. “I like you.”
The gravity he was used to had disappeared altogether from the room. He was drifting in her outer space and didn’t know how to maneuver in it. “Is that good?””—Jonathan Carroll
“You never wear a wristwatch, do you?"
“No. If I wear one I look at it all the time. Then I feel like a slave to it.”
“But what do you do when you need to know what time it is? What if you have an appointment?”
“Time is all around if you just look closely. There are clocks in store windows, in displays, in ads, on the street. Right now start counting. At the same time start looking for a clock. If you’re in the city it’s very rare to get all the way to thirty before you can find what time it is. Jewelry store windows, appliance stores….”
“If you carry a cellphone there’s a clock on in too.”
“But you’re being too practical. Of course it’s on your cellphone, but I’d rather do a little search for the time, you know, pay more attention to my surroundings and find it that way.”—Jonathan Carroll
“The difference between the people who take simple total delight in a magic trick, as opposed to those who are both skeptical and sometimes even annoyed that they have been “tricked” at all. Given the choice, I would prefer to be the one in the audience clapping hardest.”—Jonathan Carroll
“The problem with waiting for someone, whether that wait is an hour or a lifetime, is everyone’s ‘clock’ is different. So what you might consider forever is only a little while to them, or vice versa.”—Jonathan Carroll
“There are two mosaics. The first is the life that you create and live. When it’s finished, that life is placed into a greater mosaic. The one where everything goes at the end.”—Jonathan Carroll / White Apples