Monday, August 21, 2006

Twinkle Twinkle Little Star

Twinkle twinkle little star
How I wonder what you are

After consulting with experts, thoughtful consideration, some additional research, and the ever foolproof heads two out of three times flipping coins I've decided the lyrics to this popular children's song should be altered. I know, it's like rewriting The Star Spangled Banner or Jesus Loves Me.

Sorry, it can't be helped. The song was written in 1806 so it has to be close to 200 years old by now. The lyrics obviously aren't working.

The revised version will start like this...

Twinkle Twinkle Little Star
How I wonder where you are.

Let me explain how I got here.

After a few glasses of wine one of my favorite ways to pass the time, or out, is sitting on our deck gazing at the stars. To me it's just mesmerizing to be there relaxing and pondering the great mysteries of life...

Is there a God?
Is there life beyond our galaxy?
Did I set the DVR to record House on Tuesday?
Do we have more wine?

Yes, much is accomplished sitting on my deck staring at the sky. Recently while on vacation however my best friend Bob attempted to ruin this simple activity for me. It had been a long day and we retired to the deck to finish the evening with a nightcap, or two. We were staying in Virginia along the mountains in the Shenandoah Valley. The night was pitch black yet crystal clear. The view was breathtaking of the stars and the moon. I was basking in the moment, my soul warmed with wine, surrounded by the glory of the spectrum before us when Bob changed my life forever by uttering,

"You know, they aren't really there."

"What's not there?" says me trying to remember if this was a continuation to a previous conversation I had zoned out of.

"The stars" he said. "What you're seeing is just an illusion."

Now Bob is my bestest friend. He is from England and I consider him a very intelligent person. He is after all well schooled, is prominent in corporate America... and he has an accent. He has to be smart. I guess he noticed me looking at him with an expression of disbelief, or perhaps a wine stupor... maybe both. He went on to explain how it takes light so long to travel to the earth that by the time it gets here and you see the stars... they actually have moved.

Needless to say this threw a huge monkey wrench into my gazing at the stars moment. Composing myself after refilling my wine glass I asked,

"Then what the hell are we looking at?"

"Well", says Bob, "You're looking at where they used to be. In fact, they may not exist at all anymore."

My night was shattered. From that point on whenever my wife and I are sitting on our deck and I look up into the heavens I find myself saying,

"Oh look at the stars. Of course, they aren't really there."

I'm sure Bob feels just terrible about spoiling this for me. First Santa Claus, then the Tooth Fairy, the Easter Rabbit, and now this. What's left? Thank goodness we ran out of wine before he tried to suggest pro wrestling was fake.

Twinkle twinkle little star
How I wonder where you are.

Yeah, sounds about right to me.


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