"Have you ever seen a UFO?" #1

No. “You asked the wrong person!”


George has the honor of being my very first interviewee. I saw him outside the window and decided I might as well start now and we could use H.o.p.’s little digital camera to record a movie from which I could make a transcription. Knowing the battery in H.o.p.’s camera was running low but hoping it would last long enough, we ran out and caught George. We talked in the shade of the trees on this humid, sunny day, the mosquitoes snacking on us.

IDYLLOPUS PRESS: And I’m going to take a photo…

GEORGE (laughing, expecting me to take a photo right then): Wait, wait…

IDYLLOPUS PRESS: But, but, no, no, but you can be, I’m going to get my camera, you can be anonymous if you want to or…

H.O.P.: Look, I’m filming.

IDYLLOPUS PRESS: Have you ever seen a UFO?

GEORGE: No, no.

Ok. What’s the most interesting coincidence you’ve ever had?

IDYLLOPUS PRESS: Ok. What’s the most interesting coincidence you’ve ever had?

H.O.P.: About alien sightings.

IDYLLOPUS PRESS: No, not about alien sightings. About anything. An interesting coincidence, synchronicity.

GEORGE (reflects long): If you could see my brain now you’d probably bust out, go to laughing. Hmmm.

Continue reading "Have you ever seen a UFO?" #1

Maybe a new little side project

The other day this came to my mind, something which I thought could be an interesting project to pursue on a long term basis, something which would be perfect for blogging, which could be possibly entertaining while offering a tiny, unassuming window on a narrow spectrum of experience that is infrequently talked about and often mocked.

Daily, I would take a different person’s photo, an off-hand portrait or a picture that would allow the person to remain anonymous (such as their hand, their shoes or midriff), and I would ask them three questions.

Have you ever seen a UFO?

What is the most peculiar or profound coincidence you’ve ever experienced?

And I’ve been searching my mind for the third question. But I keep thinking it should be what is the person’s earliest memory. I could also ask the person if they have any religious affiliation, are agnostic or atheist or…whatever.

I’m not looking for anything in particular, this wouldn’t be like a poll.

On Sunday night I was thinking this was a great idea and I would start it on Monday. But on Monday I was then a week deep into trying to get my new computer (I’m now in Vista world) somewhat in order, was occupied with that, and then decided my project would be lame anyway. Then I thought about it again a little on Tuesday, this time thinking of maybe different things I should ask and deciding no, no, I won’t do it after all.

I hadn’t talked about this with Marty or H.o.p.

Today, sorting out the computer continued. I was on the phone to India for three hours and the technician was great. Afterward, I did some website updates for someone. I started a new painting. I realized I needed to reload in my Wacom brushes and some other brushes. I remembered some programs I still needed to install but have to locate them first (I still need to purchase a scanner as mine won’t work with Vista). I began gathering together some of H.o.p.’s newest sculptures to photograph since I can now manage them again on the computer. We had pizza for the second time this week, as a special treat for H.o.p. Marty was in late from the studio and we were all kind of drained so there wasn’t much talk about anything and what talk there was was about the studio. We watched some jazz history on television. I did my yoga. H.o.p. went to bed. Marty went to bed. Then after a couple more hours of painting I went to bed. Then after a little while longer H.o.p. came stumbling in from his room, crawled into our bed and was fast asleep again immediately.

As I lay there, unable to sleep, I thought again about the project that I’d on Tuesday decided to abandon. And I thought maybe it would be a good idea to do it after all. Still though, as on Tuesday, I had gotten away from the initial purpose. I thought of a hundred other practical subjects to ask about but the list of questions grew too long, so I narrowed it down to one question, thinking maybe I should ask if the person had one bit of history they wanted to relate.

Then I remembered my original idea. The UFO question and the question about a peculiar or profound coincidence. Maybe, I thought, I should ask if they had ever dreamed something which came true? Or maybe that was getting to be too much.

Wondering if this was really a possibility considering that I’m rather shy and not good at approaching people (but certainly I could approach one person a day on this?), thinking that I would need to invest in a cheap digital recorder too, I lay there, waiting for sleep, reciting in my head over and over the two resolved upon questions I would ask. “Have you ever seen a UFO? What is the most peculiar or profound coincidence you’ve ever experienced? Have you ever seen a UFO? What is the most peculiar or profound coincidence you’ve ever experienced? Have you ever seen a UFO…?”

And this voice suddenly announced beside me, “They have found the aliens.”

I looked over and it was H.o.p., eyes shut fast, talking in his sleep. I can’t recollect the last time I heard him talk in his sleep.

That was the only thing he said.