Something Where There is Nothing

Written by Susan Fritz | Sunday, February 21st, 2016 Posted in Blog, Hawaii, Yoga
Turtle Flower Power
Turtle Flower Power

The best compliment I have ever received was from an Italian, in Italy. I’d just made a totally nutso video on my Flip camera (RIP Flip) using a stuffed green Barbapapa character and filmed on the roof–which was drenched in TV wires and satellites–of the apartment where I was living. If I were a bona fide filmmaker, you could exchange the adjective “nutso” to “esoteric”, “artsy”, or even “abstruse”, but since I’m not, I’ll stick with “nutso”. In any event, I showed it to the aforementioned anonymous Italian and his response (which could have gone a number of ways in my mind) was simple, yet profound–and included the precise language only a non-native speaker could employ.

You see something where there is nothing.

Now if I were a different kind of Suz, I suppose I could have taken offense to this, but I’m not. I am the kind of Me who appreciated this as perhaps the highest compliment I could imagine. Of course, it all relates back to my childhood (doesn’t everything–yikes!), where my mom literally drilled the following into the noggins of my sister and me:

You are not allowed to be bored.

She literally drilled it, ok? Child abuse, sure, but just like when your Uncle Benny smacked you on the head for lifting up the skirt of your cousin Jackie (whassamattaya?!?), totally worthwhile. (Ok, so I exaggerated a little–I don’t have an Uncle Benny or a cousin Jackie, and no one in my family would wear a skirt); but the rest is true.

I was not allowed to be bored.

Little House Person
Little Electric House Person

What did this teach me? It taught me to play with ants outside for hours–which taught me to observe their patterns of behavior–which wired the synapses together to identify the interconnectedness of all things. And all this before I set foot in any kind of yoga or meditation class–ad waay before I cracked open a single page of any sort of philosophizing book.

This leads me to present day–a place where I am often asked, “So what do you do all day out there in paradise? Aren’t you bored?” 


No, no…I am not bored. Because although I do not have a “normal” 9-5 gig, I stay surprisingly busy–not unlike the way a retired person disgusts you by saying, “I am so much busier now that I’m retired!” I can relate. Now don’t freak out and mentally punch me in the face just yet! As I often say, it seems sometimes like I’m living life in reverse…and as a fellow kindred spirit once quipped, “Susan, we will someday be the most interesting old ladies working at Arby’s.” In other words, I’ll take my chances on the future and trade them for my observations today.

If I could teach you how to see Something where there is Nothing, I would. If I could grab you by the hand and take you back to your childhood (the tiny one–before books and numbers) like some Ghost of Wonder Past, I certainly would. Instead I’ll give you an order like my mom did all those years ago:

You are not allowed to be bored.

So look up, look out–Notice. Something is Everywhere.

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