On Knowing

“Do you think it’s possible to ever really know the real whole of someone?”

Because I have become enthralled by this girl, obsessively, time-wastingly poring over her blog, seeking like a smitten schoolboy to curry her favor, and because she asked and I can deny her nothing, I will herewith write my answer to the question. Of course I feel foolish jumping through this hoop. I imagine that she has a lot of guys jumping through hoops, and she probably enjoys it. Anyway, I would have a few for her to jump through if the occasion arose, so fair’s fair.

The question first appeared in the comment section of her blog, and it took me by surprise because I thought that she was mainly having fun with a goofy pseudo-biography I was spinning about Popeye the Sailor, trying to entertain her. Clearly she wants more than entertainment.

But I have thought about this for days now, until I have become fevered and delerious, and I really can’t answer the question with authority. So I will use the loophole contained in the question, and say only what I think.

I think it must only be possible to be in the process of getting to know someone. Whenever you hook up, you must take a crash course in Who They Seem to Be. In that first weekend you’ll learn a whole big lot of superficial stuff, and it will be the most fun ever. If it happens then that you have a genuine interst in each other, a trust might develop over time, and more might be revealed, and understood.

The whole time you are learning these tidbits, though, they will be shifting like sand dunes, changing into other beliefs, attitudes, likes and dislikes. I think this is natural for people. You can’t remain unchanged as Life bumps up against you, showing you its beauty, its pain, its joy and sorrow, its fear and its comfort.

If you are truly into each other, you will sense these changes and you will begin to improvise together a sort of soul jam, which embraces change and flows with it rather than trying to nail down any part of the music. The phrases will weave together more and more coherently until the song becomes so magical that it will seem that you are reading from the same chart.

You’ll never know the whole of the other, because it will always be developing. But every day there will be something new to ponder and to play with. And every now and then you will hit notes together that are in such perfect harmony that you will laugh and cry in wonder.

I wouldn’t have it any other way.

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2 Replies to “On Knowing”

  1. Gosh, I wish I had all those guys jumping through hoops for me. That would be fun….how did you know I loved hula hoops? By the way, I would jump through any hoop you put before me, and, yes, I do need more than mere entertainment. I need lots and lots of stimulation, mostly intellectual in nature.

    I agree that one can never totally know the whole of another, because the journey of one’s life is spent trying to get to know one’s own self. It’s a discovery process, much like peeling an onion. Layer upon layer is discovered, and that’s what I find so incredibly fascinating about life, and what really gets my juices flowing. The idea of life. I love it. I love living it. Everything about it. Every step along the path is a new discovery within myself: the good and the bad.

    Unfortunately, so many people don’t open themselves up to be loved, discovered, cherished, nurtured, and so forth, which makes it difficult to get to know others on something deeper than a superficial level. Many allow the smallness of their own insecurities, jealousies, etc, to control themselves and others around them. Life shouldn’t be that way. It’s meant to be shared. We are all on this journey together. Thinking about that…you know the magnitude of that..the magnificence of it all…we are all here at the same time, breathing the same air, experiencing the same events, moments, and so on and so on….this incredible gift of life. Why waste it? Gosh, I can’t imagine.

    Why do we close ourselves off? Maybe that is what I really should have asked?

  2. Melissa,
    Why do we close ourselves off? I’ll think on that, and get back to you. Also, I will think of a hoop for you, while I picture you hula-hooping.

    As for all those guys jumping through hoops for you — don’t you see them? Just look out your window, for God’s sake…

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