They say if you want to be disappointed, just have expectations. I went to an "unbirthday party" last night for two people, one of whose birthdays I was told is in July (the other's was yesterday) that was also a Festivus party (a day early from what I hear). So it was kind of an un-party, though it was like most parties, lots of food and dessert and music and talk.
Since the brain operation (I know some of you are tired of hearing about that but it continues to impact my thinking patterns and my ways of responding to stimuli) crowds, even small ones, create a kind of anxiety sometimes. My automatic response seems to be to chatter and/or become almost childishly eager or earnest etc.
I think I may have ended up offending a few people who attempted to have conversations with me, though others seemed to go fine. But my main point is that the "un-"ness of the evening got me thinking about how sometimes the unexpected is much more satisfying in the short and often even the long run.
I was at Whole Foods yesterday when a sister-in-law's youngest sibling came up and hugged me from behind and I had no idea who it was but loved the unexpected warmth and affection. I was pleased to see her, as I always am. We've known each other since we were kids in our respective older siblings wedding party (I caught the garter and got to slide it up her leg recorded in the wedding album).
The night before I couldn't find anything to watch on the TV (I still prefer stumbling on the unexpected treasure than going to "on demand" of (I can't think of the name of the service you pay for to get videos in the mail or streaming online, it begins with an "N") and stopped to catch a bit of about a third of the way into the massive flop JOHN CARTER and ended up watching it to the end and being unexpectedly satisfied. [Thought of it after I first posted this: Netflix.]
It was campy, especially the costumes, and the special effects weren't anything I hadn't seen before, and the story wasn't either, basic sic-fi/fantasy simplistic plot etc. But surprisingly, to me, it wasn't as bad as I'd heard or that much more predictable and campy than some similar movies that were big hits. And for an hour or so of escapism I found it passably entertaining. [Just as I found another major flop, ISHTAR, more than just entertaining, actually pretty damn good, when it first came out and no one else seemed to.]
I didn't hear the speech the head of the NRA gave (like the killers who use guns to massacre people I prefer not to name those who deliberately cause suffering and pain and death, why should they be honored by any kind of publicity, it's the victims and the heroes who defend them and sometimes die doing that whose names the media should make famous) but from news accounts I unexpectedly agree with at least one point he made that I've been making for most of my life (see my poem "The Healing" or me reading it on YouTube), that the glorification of violence in movies and more recently in recordings and video games and reality shows has a negative impact on a lot of vulnerable minds, like the young or the mentally challenged or those of us like me susceptible to violent impulses.
Then tonight I watched an interview on Piers Morgan, who I normally don't watch but he had on Barbra Streisand whose talent knocked me out the first time I heard her sing and whose first album was seminal in my life for many reasons, not least of which was that what she did with her voice no one had ever done before making her one of the few major innovators whose influence changed an art form. [Though there are those, I know, who would say changed it for the worse, but that's not this musician's opinion.]
It was unexpected to see her giving an interview, a rare event in her life, and even more unexpected to see her looking so good, especially for her age (near mine) and claiming she's against plastic surgery or any changes to her physiognomy mostly because she doesn't trust that whoever's doing it won't mess up. All this with a perfectly smooth (at least through the TV) forehead and cheeks that didn't move, so I'm guessing Botox.
But, still the interview was an unexpected delight because she seemed to be pretty honest about the way she sees herself and deals with her stardom. All in all an unexpectedly satisfying few days, which it seems every day turns out to be now that I try not to have any expectations in the first place.