I WNDR

The Wndr Museum is in the West Loop of Chicago, a once forgotten neighborhood, now bubbling over with imagination. I went there last week with no expectations, which is a lot like a first date. You’re better off going in with no expectations and letting yourself be surprised. Maybe you kiss. Maybe you don’t. Maybe you withhold the kiss until the 3rd date.

Speaking of something undeniably sweet, there was a wall of candy. There were floors where the colors changed when you danced. There were emoticons matched to moods matched to musical artists matched to your best self. I don’t know when it happened, but somewhere along the way museums stopped being dusty places where you stand in line to worship the past and transformed into interactive experiences where adults are on emotional even-footing with 6 year olds. The playful dance. The brats judge.

It makes me wndr…

Why didn’t I dance in the Bar Mitzvah Years? Why was I so concerned with how I looked? Who was paying attention? I’ll tell you who: nobody! You’re not supposed to be good at dancing, you’re supposed to be joyful, ridiculous, in a place where concern is irrelevant. Whenever I see people dancing who’ve clearly put in too much time, I wonder why they need the rest of us to notice how good they are at something which is supposed to be nothing more than an epileptic spasm of joy.

I remember going to The Green Mill. I was there to watch a friend perform. After she got off stage, we jumped onto the dance floor. Half way through the first song, she stopped me, embarrassed by my lack of awareness for how clumsy I was dancing on a floor packed with ringers. They were twisting. They were turning. Their dance moves were perfect.  I was baffled. I hadn’t noticed them, and if they were judging me, well that was on them. I was having fun. I was suddenly annoyed with the woman I was dancing with, so I turned away from her, found someone I didn’t know, asked her to dance, and plugged myself back into joyfulness. I’m blowing a kiss to myself in the Bar Mitzvah Years. In my memory, now I’m dancing.

In the last post I wrote, I was asked in the comment section to write about myself. I don’t know Janet but I thought it was nice of her to drop by and comment. I thought it was nice of her to ask. I have two things to say to Janet…

#1

Thank you for wndring about what’s going on in my life.

#2

I want you to understand when I talk about politics, I’m talking about myself. It’s what I’m into! When I break things down in the world, I’m sharing myself with you.

Case in point, yesterday Joe Biden put his foot in his mouth when he backed The Hyde Amendment, which is used to punish women for being poor. This was the moment Elizabeth Warren became the frontrunner. I have never been a fan of Joe Biden. I’m glad he’s running but he will get trounced by Donald Trump. Even if Joe Biden wins the presidency, he will get trounced by MAGA TROLLS. In all honesty, I don’t see anyone beating Donald Trump. He has the voice of the moment and he speaks media fluently but having said that, I can see Elizabeth Warren getting under his thin skin and cleaning his clock in the rumble for 2020.

I’d like to see an election pitting Pocahontas against Big Chief Pussygrabber.

The only reason Joe Biden is on anybody’s radar is because he raised a ton of money and the networks are schmoozing Joe so he’ll spend his money with them. I’ve never seen Joe Biden talk for more than 3 consecutive minutes without meandering, staggering, mumbling, bumbling, putting his foot in his mouth. He’s an embarrassment and his only real qualification is he’s a white male and there are people out there making the miscalculation that only a white male can beat Trump.

It makes me wndr…

When did I get stupid? When did I decide it was okay to call Hillary Clinton shrill? When did I decide being likable was a woman’s top consideration? Why did I tune in to watch the stupid speeches at Normandy, to glorify a battlefield where children were sent to die because the grown ups watching things derail into Anti-Semitic Insanity made the faces on Mount Rushmore cringe by saying this, “There are very fine people on both sides.” Get rid of Putin. Get rid of Kim Jong-un. Get rid of Trump. Get rid of dull white men who read “Mein Kampf” like they’re reading “Profiles In Courage.” When I’m president, they shall be arrested. When I’m president, they shall be held to account. When I’m president, there shall be an American War Crimes Tribunal. When I’m president, the families of MAGA TROLLS shall be stripped of their wealth, stripped of their citizenship, stripped of their PR-Firms. At my inauguration, The Dixie Chicks shall sing The National Anthem, ushering in a rebirth of freedom, in 3 part harmony.

In the meantime, what am I doing? A fraternity brother of mine, Eddie Gee, says I’m grazing. Another fraternity brother of mine, Vinny Vegas, says I’m retired. Another guy I know from college calls frequently to mock me.

“What are you doing today Morelli?” he asks.

“I’m taking a nap on a giant pile of north shore money,” I say.

It’s partly true. It’s partly not. I don’t owe anyone an explanation for what I’m doing but the laugh is good and so I double-down on the laugh. Incidentally, the guy who calls to mock me is a hustler and piece of shit who’s never amounted to anything but I happen to love him, so there’s that!

Between naps,  I’ve been putting the finishing touches on an album I wrote, hitting the open mic circuit, seeing how my songs are landing in the room, while at the same time, making time every week to bring the energy of the stage into the recording studio. I love the work. I’m made to do the work, and by made I mean this: self-made. Nobody gave me the ability to write a song. Nobody gave me the stamina to get back on stage after somebody else wins the applause and half of the tip jar. Nobody gave me a trust fund filled with a catalog of hit songs and Yoko Ono’s phone number. It’s the same thing with Mount Rushmore, somebody saw the faces before the faces were up there and decided everybody else was going to see them too. Who the Hell knows exactly how they did it, who the Hell cares. It’s besides the point. They did it. They showed up. They carved out of rock something for all of us to aspire to, shaping ambition into a monument of wndr.

It makes me wndr…

When I got to college, why did I feel the need to jump right into a fraternity where everybody looked like the people I grew up with? Why did I pine so hard to get in, to fit in? Why do I seek community, and at the same time, feel a resistance within myself to go with the program? Why do I still feel a closeness to the fraternity brothers I met at this split second in my life? I still talk to them on the phone, still meet them out for a drink, still get friend requests from them on Facebook, still sought them out to dance in Nashville in the darkest hour of my life. Despite myself, how did I get so lucky? Why am I holding myself back? What am I afraid of?

I wndr.

1 thought on “I WNDR”

  1. Are rich socialists hypocrites if they don’t give away most of their money? Why not give that pile of North Shore money away to the United Negro College Fund? Is it just that you don’t want to give up your white privilege?

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