Does Reality Ever Get You Down? #socs

Does reality ever get you down?
Does someone singing ever make you frown?
Does someone talking to giant mice
Ever make you feel not nice?

No, I’m not turning into a poet. A friend of mine from high school came up with this years ago, and when I saw today’s prompt was “real,” it was the first thing I thought of. Actually, no, the first thing I thought of was real analysis, a math course I had to take that made absolutely no sense when I was taking it, but I took it because I wanted to get my degree in Math and that’s one of the classes you take. Real analysis is based on real numbers, which are basically not complex numbers, which are numbers of the form a + bi, where a and b are real numbers and i is the square root of -1. Everybody knows that, right?

Anyway, I got thinking about reality because I read Lori Carlson’s SoCS entry (which was excellent, and you should click on the link and go read it. Don’t worry, I’ll leave this window open for you) about not knowing what’s real and what’s imagined. Do you remember the last show of the series St. Elsewhere, which ran for six seasons back in the 1980’s? Where, at the end, we learn that the whole thing was the dream of an autistic kid looking at a snow globe? I wonder sometimes if that’s us, living in the imagination of some being somewhere. God, maybe, I’m not sure.

Did you ever see the alternate explanation for the TV show Friends, that said the whole thing happened in Phoebe’s head? That she was actually a homeless crack addict who would stare in the window of Central Perk and make up stories about Rachel, Ross, Joey, Chandler, and Monica and insert herself into them? Sometimes I think I’m the guy on the outside looking in, like Phoebe, making up stories and inserting myself into them. What if we were all doing that? I know, some of us do just that, don’t we?

What if it was true, that the light we all see as we die is just the light we see when we’re being pushed out of our new mother’s womb? Maybe there’s something to reincarnation. Sometimes I hope so. Other times, not so much.

I would talk about my dreams to my mother sometimes, and she’d wave me off and tell me to “be realistic.” I think I assumed that “being realistic” meant living in her version of reality.

It’s a lot to think about, and it’s been keeping me awake at night sometimes. I look back at six decades of life (thank you all for the birthday wishes, by the way) and can actually see what went wrong and what I’d do if I had to do it all over again. Then I realize life isn’t like Back To The Future or Doctor Who, where you can just get into your TARDIS or put a flux capacitor onto your car and just end up in the past. It’s more like The Big Bang Theory episode when the guys bought the “time machine” prop from the 1960 movie of the same name starring Rod Taylor and Alan Young, who was playing Wilbur Post in Mr. Ed at the time.

So, yes, reality gets me down sometimes.

Hey, remember this?



I had a real lot of fun doing this. Linda Hill does Stream of Consciousness Saturday every weekend; she puts the prompt and rules on her blog and collects pingbacks from everyone who does it. Stop on by and say howdy!

23 thoughts on “Does Reality Ever Get You Down? #socs

  1. That was fun! I never really got into friends, but if I had, Phoebe would be my favorite friend, so I in my reality, she would not be a crack addict. But then, anything is possible.


    1. I think it was aimed at a younger audience than us. I never really got into it either… there were times I had no idea what they were talking about. Peachtree TV, who took over channel 17 in Atlanta when TBS went all-cable, would run the reruns during rain delays of Braves games, so I’d leave it on to see when the game would restart. I don’t know if that could be considered “watching” the show, but that’s when I’d see it.


  2. I am reminded of one of Bob Monkhouse’s jokes: “I don’t believe in reincarnation, you know.” Pause. “Funnily enough, in a previous life, I did!”
    I do like the concept that the light we all see as we die is just the light we see when we’re being pushed out of our new mother’s womb.


    1. That’s kind of what I hope happns when we die. I’d hate to think that there was no life after death. 

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    1. Well. I’ll see you during the Challenge, then! You know where to find me…

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  3. Love love love this post, John.. Mathiness is sexiness 😀 that’s my views on it. I don’t understand much of it beyond calculus though, but I am fascinated when those who do know discuss it 😀
    Thank you for the link back to my post. I am honored by your comments and glad that it gave you a moment’s pause and thoughts.
    That is my favorite episode of The Big Bang Theory… oh the places I could go with a Time Machine!
    My mother was similar with me.. always telling me I needed to live in the real world a while. pfft!
    Hope you and yours have a blessed Easter!

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    1. Thanks! Hope you have a good Easter as well. I specially like Penny’s line, “oh please, that’s not a time machine! It looks like something Elton John would drive through the Everglades!”

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  4. Great post John, I very much enjoyed it. The fact you did a maths course that you didn’t understand says heaps for you as a human being, that and I never really understood any maths when I was at school or since. I’ve read some fascinating posts about reality today yours was very engaging for me too. My parents had similar responses to yours in terms of what was real and what wasn’t. This of course gave rise to conflict later when I had a few ideas about life that they didn’t understand at all. But then we are all different and we wouldn’t want to be the same as the next person now would we……hope your Easter is going well John…..

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    1. Lord, a world where everyone was the same? Heaven forbid!  You have a good Easter as well.

      #yiv7247548450 a:hover {color:red;}#yiv7247548450 a {text-decoration:none;color:#0088cc;}#yiv7247548450 a.yiv7247548450primaryactionlink:link, #yiv7247548450 a.yiv7247548450primaryactionlink:visited {background-color:#2585B2;color:#fff;}#yiv7247548450 a.yiv7247548450primaryactionlink:hover, #yiv7247548450 a.yiv7247548450primaryactionlink:active {background-color:#11729E;color:#fff;}#yiv7247548450 | | |

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  5. Does reality ever not get me down?

    I’ll have to read about that Friends theory. It seems interesting at least, if not true.

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  6. Great post! Lori Carlson is a dear friend and I was delighted to see her SoCS link here. Your posts always make me think. Love the COKE video I am a COKE freak so two points there. What is real? #atochallenge is real. Lol so is the fact I am think what to write about in my SoCS today. What is real however I am not sure. Which is the real point you made. Thanks great post!

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