It’s here, yes it is. Summer. The kids are coming home for the WHOLE SUMMER and I bet you’re all wondering things like “What are the top 5 educational activities for summer fun?”. Well that’s crazy synchronous because this is a post about the TOP 5 EDUCATIONAL ACTIVITIES FOR SUMMER FUN. It’s like you rubbed a magic lamp and asked a genie for the top 5 educational activities for summer fun. Because here they are. The activities. The top 5 ones. But hey! They’re for your kids, though. Not you. So go get your kids. The 5 things. They’re next.
TOP 5 EDUCATIONAL ACTIVITIES FOR SUMMER FUN
5). Develop relationships with imaginary friends. Most of the imaginary creatures swimming around the psyche are friendly. Okay. Maybe not most. Just make sure you avoid the ones all covered in blood who command you to murder everyone at the mall. Ask them to leave you alone. If they persist, scream something like “I BESEECH THEE TO BE ON THY WAY AND BOTHER ME NOT, WAYWARD SPIRIT! I AM NOT NOR WILL I EVER BE A HOUSE HOSPITABLE TO THE GUEST OF EVIL! BEGONE!” If that doesn’t work, seek medical attention. Anyway, after you meet a kind person or animal in your imagination, cultivate a relationship with him or her by engaging them with frequent conversation, singing, dancing, and ritual offerings. Imaginary friends are very wise and, because they’re in tune with the intricate design of your destiny, they can be very helpful as you struggle to make various decisions. They’re also very funny. They love jokes and pranks. They can teach you how to smile when the sky is full of rain. Treat your imagination as if it’s real and so it is. Let your school friends waste the summer looking for trouble and experimenting with drugs. You have an invitation to the party in your solitude.
4). Write stories that defy the plot line. This can often be as easy as jotting down the stories told by your imaginary friends. They come from a long lineage of unresolved adventure and, after they’re convinced that you’re open to their soft kind of reality, it’s almost impossible to shut them up. Listen to them carefully. Take notes. Their stories, though often resistant to rational attempts to understand them, tend to articulate an anatomy of the soul. However, sometimes you and your ego are on your own so—hey, you’re not in school—make a practice of writing stories that provide the reader with little to no exposition. Make them guess. It’s called thinking and wondering and it’s not going to kill them. Deconstruct the notions of rising and falling action by doing away completely with their overwrought meeting place: the climax. Make every scene a climax or scrap the climax altogether. And, good God, please spare the world another tidy resolution. Is anything resolved in your life? Of course it isn’t. We’re all—every one of us—a complicated mess of loose ends that rarely get tied. Let your loose ends be wild and free in the narrative breeze.
3). Ignore your chores and laze about in the grass. You’ve just endured 9 months of being responsible. Don’t let your parents keep the streak alive by forcing you to take out the trash and mow the grass. Just tell them you’re off to do your chores and then disappear. Lie down in the grass, put your hands behind your head, and let the world unspool on its own all by its pretty little self. Be a mountain and let a strange bug stroll across your belly. Check out the clouds and imagine what they look like; this is the origin of metaphor. Note the way the clouds drift by and how thoughts drift through your head until your thoughts are clouds and clouds are thoughts and you are crème dissolving in a big cup of coffee. Here. Here is your education and you can’t learn it from teachers or, for heaven’s sake, by doing what your parents tell you.
2). Get lost in the woods. First, make sure that you and your parents have a bunch of plans that are extra especially important and you absolutely must do them or lots of bad things will happen. Then, find some woods that are dark and ominous. Enter the woods and stay on the trail for awhile. Look at birds. Search for good walking sticks. Stuff like that. But then succumb to that compulsion beyond your control to leave the trail to explore the unmapped wilderness. Yes. This is a metaphor but it’s also something you should actually do because it’s a genuine educational activity for summer fun. Get lost. Get good and lost. Walk for hours and see the same big oak tree 4 or 5 times. Experience hunger pangs. Wonder if, even doubt, you’ll survive. Wonder with great sincerity about what will happen when you die. Cry. Wipe away tears and smudge dirt on your cheeks with your grubby lost hands. Whisper things to your loved ones that you wish you would’ve told them before you were sure to die. Stay lost until your clothes are torn asunder in dramatic tatters. And then—like an epiphany—remember your imaginary friends, consult them for guidance, and obey their commands. Find your way home. Witness how brightly everything shines in the joy of survival, how everything lives. But now it’s your secret; never forget: lost is how we are in the world.
1). Be bored. Have nothing to do. Refuse every idea about what to do that presents itself. Get bored. Lie on your bed and lose interest in everything until everything is flat and grey and equal. Become unable to rise from bed because anything beyond your bed feels too boring to engage. Identify with ancient stones in ancient forests who do nothing for 100s of years but listen and watch. Lie in bed with the bored equilibrium of the burning stars. Let boredom bore through you until you are nothing apart from this bored boredom boring through. Become interested in your boredom until even your boredom is boring. Be killed by boredom. Let boredom destroy you. Rot and decay and vanish in boredom until one day, late in the summer, in the orange ashes of this smoldering boredom, some undecipherable something will begin to barely move. Watch this slightly moving something with rejuvenated interest in your eyes and it will, slowly, cautiously, come into view. And it will be a question, your question, a question born in the world through your laborious boredom. And this will mark the beginning of your true education: when the world asks a question to which the only possible answer is you you you.
Read more from me at Black Hockey Jesus.
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