I am often invaded by thoughts that would to someone else feel alien; weird, formless phantoms that interrupt my work and set me to following bright, shiny objects instead of concentrating on matters at hand.
And what do I do when so annexed? I pull up a chair, pour some tea … or wine, if the hour is right … and invite my visitor to settle in for a while and share whatever it is they’ve popped into to ponder with me.
Today my alien is an alien, and although alien is the most easily accessible word for this guy, he’s not actually alien in the least …
… unless, of course, we all are.
And we are. Or, at least, I am. I don’t presume to speak for anyone else and understand many are distinctly uncomfortable with any notion suggesting they’ve ever been anything else or have even the smallest shred of anything else anywhere in their makeup.
Like the legions of folks who resent the hell out of any implication there might be shared DNA between them and … say … a chimp, others are right pissed off when handed a card reading: What you see is NOT what you are.
Sputter … gasp … choke … but, but, but …
But as I said, I’m only speaking for myself here, and this is what I am, and am not: a human woman of a certain age living on a small island in the Indian Ocean on Planet Earth.
It’s true. But not the complete truth.
I am also:
1) A result of millions of years of evolution
2) A system of biological functions
3) A transport service for a bunch of other beings that digest my food, live in my eyelashes and occasionally make me feel like shit.
The first three are a brief sum of what I am NOW. The fourth is what I am ALWAYS.
Given our biology and our residence, albeit very brief, on Earth, it’s an easy thing to forget the bigger neighborhood. FFS … how many people in Podunk, McMiddleAmerica forget Africa? We get all wrapped up in blankets and burritos and Manolo Blahnik and begin to assume this is what it’s all about … and all there is.
Boring. Limited. And a fucking waste of time and energy if it were the case. But it’s not, at least not in my world.
And, yes, I have a world. I’d say we all do, but that would be pushing the edges of this post’s envelope since I’m sticking to just me and my alien.
We’re one and the same, you see …
I was born Sandra, but before I was Sandra I was. (Okay … maybe not before, since time is an option, but for sake of not spinning this head off my axis and setting out after another shiny object, I’m sticking to linear for reasons of convenience.) It’s very likely I was born before, in the sense that I emerged from a human woman, grew, walked around and all the stuff I do now, only under different circumstances and geography. I have memories and experiences from stuff that happened impacts stuff that happens.
Some people and places draw me, some situations terrify me, some things give comfort and others make me extremely uncomfortable and I have no doubt reasons reach back further than my years.
Because I am, for the moment, human, it is not within my realm to assimilate experiences I had when not human, nor are those relevant. For one thing this little brain I have, all biochemical and wired for NOW, couldn’t process the data, but I do get to access it once I shuck the biological shell.
Not at all Earthcentric, I don’t assume every dance I’ve been to happened here; no, I’m sure my card has been many times filled with waltzes I couldn’t presently recognize if they stomped on my toes and called me Sweetie.
This is a big-ass hanging universe … and it’s just the one we have some idea of presently … and stuck here, as I am, on this little blue marble in my skin I have a lot to deal with through my three-score-and-ten, or whatever I end up with. I’m here for reasons I knew before I arrived, but programed to forget; a set up I like to think of as my way of making sure I don’t cheat.
I’m a blob of energy … even on those days I don’t want to drag my ass out of bed … doing the Macarena through time and space paying no attention to speed limits (I thumb my nose at 186,000 miles per second), temporarily confined to quarters. I’m a single cell in a massive organism free to move about after doing whatever it is I’m to do here and now. I’m an alien being from another world doing time on Earth. I’m a harbinger of doom, a ray of hope, dark matter, bright light.
Ah … what the fuck …
As Popeye so succinctly put it: I yam what I yam.