“David, you’re crazy.” I have been told this on more than one occasion. And so as not to disturb my family, friends and colleagues, this accusation has always been in good silly fun. At least I think it was always meant that way. If not I probably need to tend to my garden of friends on Facebook that I hardly talk to. (Friends List gardening is such an art you know. My technique is quite simple in fact. All one needs to do is roam the newsfeed wall and look for unappealing profile pics then delete them post haste before you feel guilty about having “unfriended” them. It is quite effective until you run into one of those friends you deleted from your list. *cringe* Just in case let me say that I am joking, mostly.)
Anyway, in the past when I have ever felt comfortable enough around any person to deactivate my usual disposition of Stealth Fortress Vulcan mode and allow myself to open up to people, sporadically I may go into a compulsive episode of seemingly disorganized word-vomit, much like this blog post. And so I would like to take this time to say to everyone and to you (the reader) that I am so sorry for what you have and/or will read here. But there is nothing you need to be concerned about. Pinky promise.
You see, the claim that I am crazy would have elicited from me a response of defensiveness in my early twenty-something years in the form of passive giggling followed by squinty eyes of contempt. But now whenever someone says, “David, you’re crazy,” I retort that I wouldn’t deny it, and for some reason I get some strange fascination out of the looks I get back after saying it. One time I said it to one of my students after I jokingly called a child a “chicken nugget,” in good fun. (Please don’t think I’m some verbally abusive teacher, as I promise you, the students and I were having fun during school dismissal. Then again, these days someone would try to take me to court and have my job over the words chicken nugget. That’s the litigious country we live in now people. smh *that means “shaking my head”*)
After calling Sam–fake name to protect one among the many wild, yet innocent souls I teach–a chicken nugget, tickled red, he said, “Mr. Moore you’re so crazy,” to which I said, “This is true! I wouldn’t deny it.” The kid stopped mid-laugh and looked at me with such wide-eyed incredulity, that it was as if we did a visual eye-to-eye Vulcan mind-meld transfer of his laughter and to which I engaged my fake maniacal villain laugh. And so everyone was laughing. (Look, if you’re serious with kids 24/7 then eventually they will actually not take you seriously because you’re too unrealistic, aloof and legalistic. You have to cut loose and let them know you watched Despicable Me too.)
Truth is I am not crazy, but I love to play games with people, within reason and right timing, for those I joke with and for my own amusement. I am for equal opportunity where no man, woman or child is left behind, no matter their title, position of power or authority. Everyone is entitled to my God-given quirky abuse. Therefore my crazy humor, if I were to qualify it in a phrase, is characterized by snarky statements so absurd and opposite reality that it humorously (usually) leaves a person in shock-turned-laughter at what I am truly meaning. Okay. That was a long phrased characterization, but I think my point is made abundantly clear. Or if not, maybe if I type it in all CAPS PERHAPS IT WILL NOT BE MISINTERPRETED AS YELLING RUDELY IN WRITING, LIKE WHEN SILLY AMERICANS SHOUT THEIR WORDS AT IMMIGRANTS WHO DON’T SPEAK ENGLISH. CAPS WILL CERTAINLY BETTER ARTICULATE MY MEANING IN EXPLANATION OF MY HUMOR…I THINK. DO YOU UNDERSTAND? ME…CRAZY…JUST HUMOR. BUT NOT REALLY.
Okay. Maybe that isn’t really helping explain anything. How about my mom brought home some steaks from the store once and told me not to touch them. I then asked, “So what you mean is go ahead and cook these delicious steaks for my personal dinner delight, right? Sounds good. Thanks mom!” My mom: “Okay pig! Act crazy if you want to.” And then we both laughed. At least my mom gets me. Then again that’s like getting your first blog comment from your parents, which doesn’t really count as a epic WIN in follower-ship. Anyway…
Recently I saw Star Trek: Into Darkness this past weekend and I liked it. But in the middle of the film in a scene specifically about Commander Spock, I realized something that had never occurred to me until recently. I am like Spock. Here is the thing. I am often left standing perplexed and lost by normal to extreme expressions of emotion, and totally late most often to “getting” the punchlines in the humor of most other people. In fact, I have very low tolerance for a person’s expressed exuberant excitement or depressiveness. A sneeze might even be grounds for a confrontation by me. As for humor, I’d sooner laugh at the simple hearing of “Two guys walked into a bar and said ouch. Get it?” (Hereon, may be things where Spock and I are different or things he never exhibited.) I live in a land of logic and reason, albeit imperfect, and have a sore mistrust for systems, authorities and subject matter experts that make truth-claims of any kind–even those made by people of my own faith–hence why I’m such the self-proclaimed amateur philosopher and Christian apologist now in my adult years. In my childhood, were I not so shy and naive, but still dangerously armed with the sharp logic I possess today, in addition to a sheer boldness, I would have said what was on my mind by being the kid at Sunday School who would openly ask hard questions. “If human beings screwed up so royally in the Garden of Eden, why didn’t God just start over? ‘Adam, Eve you are the weakest links and it is a poor reflection on me. Good bye!’” But for at least my own sake, I’m glad God did not do that because then I would not exist, nor would awesome Apple products exist, namely my iPhone. It almost goes without saying that wiping out iPhones, iPads and such would have been totally unacceptable. That’s logic I don’t want. Makes you “think different.”
(Truth: People like me are least likely to put stock into God and religion, and we definitely share a hyper-distrust for governing authorities and bureaucracy. But oops, here I am having stumbled into the hands of the Big G, and by the “G” reference I don’t mean Google. I have a gut feeling employees at Google are hell-bent on world domination and internet worship of a god named Android. I’m so not serious when I say that.. *digression* And it is odd that I work in two forms of public service in light of my personality: public school education; presently being subjected to the legislative terrorism of politicians and the cyclical semantic reincarnations of past approaches in education packaged as new discoveries by professors in higher learning. And I am annoyed to no end by rank/power-tripping obsessed soldiers of all echelons in the United States Army. I guess I don’t even get my own punchlines because I non-coercively chose both occupations! Yeah, I know. Cue the dog head-turns of confusion. I promise I am not a glutton for personal punishment. That would be weird. But all that being said, I actually deeply love what I do within both occupations and I believe it is nothing but God who molds me into what He knows will make me a better productive human being and Christ-follower as a teacher and soldier.)
Emotion for me is sometimes a help and often times an absolutely HUGE annoyance that can bring a great deal of confusion into my inner encyclopedic world and consequently the chaotic mess of a planet on which we live. People are highly illogical (including me due to my emotional tugs, as said earlier) and it frustrates me. About two months ago I had a friend call me a robot. Actually, he said that I switch between two modes: one of rare occasional jovial openness and then another of cold roboticism (I made this word up just now). I promise I am not a Vulcan monster, but if I am to live in the world and be happy within it, then the world needs to make sense (even though it will never make sense). Nevertheless, it is people like me who are probably more likely to say, “I need to wrap my brain around this,” or I cannot seem to wrap my mind around the awesomeness of Grey’s Anatomy now in its 9th season or the amazing taste of pizza with pineapple on it!
As an educator my weekly work life will bring at least two or three moments in my mind of the “spinning beach ball of death,” the Mac-user equivalent of the “blue screen of death” on a Windows (any version) operating system. In other words, there will be days where nothing my family, colleagues, or the students say or do that will jive in any coherent way no matter how clear I am in my dealings, instructions, requests or idle conversation with them all. Sometimes I do not understand what on earth is going on with the people around me, or is it all in my head? But at the end of the day it is nothing a warm Krispy Kreme donut cannot fix. Who’s with me? Let’s march to our local Krispy Kreme to demand our rights for rationality, one dozen of glazed donuts at a time. One dozen per person. Buy your own! No hand-outs here buddy!
Coming way back to Star Trek… I am like Spock, but with greater oddities and I don’t like folks like Ohura. (In real life they are meddling wicked people.) But it just so happens that the following characters were the ones that I have always believed I share similar personality traits, and whom I simply find appealing and most rational among the cast. In their roles they seemed to bring a kind of peace to the whirlwind of episodic challenges.
- Spock, Star Trek
- Data, Star Trek: The Next Generation
- Tuvok, Star Trek: Voyager
- Seven of Nine, Star Trek: Voyager
And these are characters who also fascinated me for their daring spirit and/or wisdom:
- Captain Kirk, Star Trek (brazen, daring stupidity and occasionally exhibiting wisdom)
- Deanna Troi, Star Trek: The Next Generation (wise)
- Guinan, Star Trek: The Next Generation (wise)
- B’Elanna, Star Trek: Voyager (daring)
- Captain Janeway, Star Trek: Voyager (daring and wise)
- Q, Star Trek: The Next Generation (daring tinkering-demi-god)
Notice in the first list they are either robotic, computer enhanced or highly logical persons and all but one are male. In the second list, notice that the majority are (assuming you’ve seen all the shows and films) are females with strong aggressive and passive personalities. Outwardly, I am often described as cool, calm and rational or this is sometimes misinterpreted by impatient extroverts as aloofness and incompetence. *squinty eyes* But inwardly, I am on fire, logical, organized, brazen, powerful, calculating, ever discerning, highly intuitive, daring and admittedly rebellious at times. I don’t think I am this way, I know I am actually made up all these things in personality because time, people, circumstances and the course of meticulous self-examination have shown me these things.
I have accepted all of me and the Lord Jesus has done the same, and is working to bring me to a better place through further knowledge and relationship with Him.
Welcome to my mind. How many? And would you like a booth or a table?