Ferris Wheel Moments in a Tilt-a-Whirl World…

21 02 2007



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Originally uploaded by Brennan Vidt.

I love the fair. i think it might possibly be my favorite place to be. it’s heaven for people-watchers and cotton-candy lovers like myself. and it drives people to do ridiculous things we otherwise wouldn’t do, like spend $8 for a hot dog dipped in greasy cornmeal or $30 to go on three questionable rides built practically out of popsicle sticks that could very well end our lives. Yet somehow we are excited to drop what could quite possibly be the last 30 bucks we ever spend on a ride that makes us sick. We might be sick, but we are still smiling.

The king of those smile-through-the-sickness rides is the Tilt-a-Whirl. I remember i went on one once. It is quite possibly the most popular ride at the fair, but i’m not quite sure why. You sit in a half-enclosed cage-like thing like the ones at Disneyland’s Haunted Mansion, locked in with a few of your friends by a rickety metal bar across your lap, and you and all the others begin to spin round and round like teacups, in different directions and speeds. This is the joy of riding the Tilt-a-Whirl – that numbing feeling of spinning through the air while your insides are tossed about from side to side as a smile uncontrollably creeps on your face. It’s the rush that people like, the same rush that comes from rollercoasters or skydiving. And it’s the rush that i avoid.

On the Titl-a-Whirl, your range of vision is narrowed, you can only see what’s directly in front of you, and you can only see it for a second. Images of others screaming with joy or fear, all of the colors and sounds twirl around you flash by flash, wizzing past your senses. You can’t really take anything in on the Tilt-a-Whirl. Image after image just melts into one big fuzzy stream of motion that you become numb to in your little spinning cage.

That’s how life has been for me as of late – a Tilt-a-Whirl of images and people and things to do. I capture them with my eyes for a split second, but never with my heart, and then i spin on to the next thing. I’m intellectually nauseated and feel like i can’t keep much more down. First i need to get off this spinning, tilting, makeshift rollercoaster and settle down long enough to really see the sights. I think i’m more the ferris wheel type – the movement’s more predictable and the view is great from above. I want to see everything around me outside this little moment in time…to see as far as the eye can go.

It is hard to carve out ferris-wheel moments in a Tilt-a-Whirl world. I’m learning afresh to step away from the mess and motion and sit in solitude (aloneness with God), silence (listening to God), and prayer (of my heart, not just my mind). And God is meeting me on this spiritual ferris wheel. We are just getting started, but the noise and the activity is starting to fade and it’s just me and Him again. We are on our way up and i can’t wait to get to the top to see the view.

Recommended Reading: The Way of the Heart by Henri Nouwen

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Apologies for the down time…

21 02 2007

For all you three people who are (were) faithful readers of this blog, I wanted to send out my heartfelt apologies for not posting anything in months. After my class ended (which i had created the blog for) i enjoyed the freedom of not being required to post anything artificially intelligent or thought-provoking.

BUT, in an attempt to keep all you blog addicts happy (blogs are like the new Starbucks, don’t you think?), i think i have decided to keep this blog up and running. notice the still-present hesitation evident in the use of the word “think.” So don’t expect anything too frequent or spectacular, but i hope to post every now and then with some struggles or book reviews or concepts i am learning. or maybe i’ll throw in a fun fact-o-the day every now and then just to keep you on your toes. who knows. the sky’s the limit. it could get crazy. 🙂

that being said, this blog is clearly in transition….new name, new look. expect those things to keep changing until i really make it my own. but thanks to the faithful few who have chastised me for slacking with this thing. i cherish the guilt you have caused, more than you know.

happy reading!