Flirtatious Attempts at Self Selection

  Clear and very cool this morning when I took the dog for a run along the frayed edges of the fog blanketing the river.  I wondered if the commercial fisherman usually there was out in his 20′ jon boat.  I’d never noticed him to have a light and certainly no foghorn.  He’s been there regularly for years and I concluded that he must know how to be safe.

  Dog shot about like a bullet which caused me some angst.  Every year for the past few, at about this time, I come to realize that his sluggishness just days or weeks prior was not due to age but heat.  What a jerk am I sometimes.  Awful when I repeat.

  Previous few weeks it’d been us three boys.  Son took off for London yesterday and so now it’s down to Sauger dogger and me.  Current nature of our crib belies that fact.  We had fun.  Ah well, I’ll get after it and no one will be the wiser.

  Turning away from the river back toward home thought shifted to the concept of ‘no self’.  No self in the sense that one doesn’t have an immutable center, that what you are is largely the evocation of your own evolving particular interpersonal milieu. 

  Andrew had his elaborate DJ setup in our living room and took it all out for a number of gigs while home.  Watching him perform and seeing how the crowd drew enjoyment and naturally fell into its rhythms and beats made me realize that our “own personal interpersonal milieus” are just like bits of music – improvisational jazz.  We’re all instruments playing off each other and the environment.

  Your particular array of pets has inflected your personality in a particular if subtle way.  The sense of your place probably had a greater impact.  You’d be profoundly different had your family been constituted other than it was.  So What?  Take Five.

  Music has always been part of our nature.  “Darwin suggested that human ancestors, before acquiring the power of speech, endeavored to charm each other with musical notes and rhythm.  It is because of music’s origin in courtship that it is firmly associated with some of the strongest passions an animal is capable of feeling.”

  (In that regard, this dad watching his son perform couldn’t help but notice a steady stream of alluring young women approach in what sure seemed like flirtatious attempts at self selection.  OMG)

  A “Dr Miller sees music as an excellent indicator of fitness in the Darwinian struggle for survival.  Since music draws on so many of the brain’s faculties, it vouches for the health of the organ as a whole.  And since music in ancient cultures seems often to have been linked with dancing, a good fitness indicator for the rest of the body, anyone who could sing and dance well was advertising the general excellence of their mental and physical genes to a potential mate.” 

  Guess I better work on my moves so that I can bust a really good one some few days hence. 

Note: Quotes above came from my trove of clippings:  9/16/03 NYT

One Response to “Flirtatious Attempts at Self Selection”

  1. andrew gierke Says:

    those girls were asking me about you.

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