Hey, little boy, would you like to know what’s in my pocket, or not?

I worry about me sometimes. I clearly never paid attention in those weird classes at school where you’re quite emphatically, but without explanation, told to avoid strangers that make promises. (When I say told, I actually mean shown a video that looked at least ten years old and so elicited more giggles than fear).

Because of course I want to know what’s in your pocket. No matter how creepy it sounds when you call me little boy.

Of course, technically, I know the questioner, and am pretty certain she’d have something interesting in her pocket. But that’s beside the point.

Simmer, simmer, simmer down.

The phrase ‘curiosity killed the cat’ always wound me up. It strikes me as a purely ideological statement. Curiosity is our greatest weapon. It’s the reason why children are so powerful. It’s the reason we’ve got anywhere with this whole civilisation thing.

But then, there is the question of trust.

I’m pretty sure the dude from Pavement is just offering some drugs.

It’s hard to resist people that are good at singing words over the top of each other. I’ve got a love of things that sound like a group of people singing around a campfire, but knowing how to harmonise and contrapunt.

Contrapuntal has to be one of my favourite words that I never use.

But I never really dug deep into Pavement (or their pockets, for that matter). Had a few odd tracks that I loved that ended up on my computer somehow. This was my favourite.

But yeah, there’s slightly less vague and suggestive symbolism on that one. (Though I’ve always wanted a fact checking cannonball, if that’s what he actually says.)

Harness your hopes to the folks with the liquor and the ropes.

Not good advice for kids, perhaps, but perhaps what we need to do is harness that curiosity and trust that we’re denied for our safety as children.

The irony of course is that children have curiosity in abundance. It seems to fade for a lot of people as they get older. When you’re a tiny being in a huge, huge world, it pays to keep on learning at the fastest rate possible. To drink in every possible experience and work out the whys and hows behind it.

And the fact is, that even though you got a bit bigger, you’re still tiny. So am I. We are little tiny people in a huge, huge world. A lot of us have seen enough whys and hows to think we know how it works; we’ll even make guesses about things we don’t know. Try and fumble a way through.

And to an extent we have to. But I think we forget to be curious.

I try and write 500 words a day of guesses about things that happen in the world. It’s nowhere near enough, and it too often sounds like I think I have answers.

I don’t.

I’m looking for more questions.

And more pockets.

Illustration by Sarah-Anne.

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About Alabaster Crippens

Joiner of Dots. Player of Games. Unreliable Narrator. Dancing Fool.
This entry was posted in Questions by Emma, Special Guest Illustrations. Bookmark the permalink.

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