Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Cloud gazing: A study on individual perspectives

Last night, some of my siblings and I took advantage of the warm summer night and hung out on the trampoline, just like the good old days. After we got tired of jumping (so after like 5 minutes or so), we laid on our backs and looked up at the clouds. Star gazing is one of my favorite summer night activities, but cloud gazing turned out to be quite an eye-opening experience as well.

To be frank, the clouds weren't that interesting—finding objects required a lot of imagination from the viewer. The fun part was hearing all of the different interpretations of the triangle-looking blob hanging above us: I thought it looked like an elephant blowing water on a sea horse, Shannan thought it looked like a spaceship, and Tyrel thought it looked like a piece of pizza creating a black hole.

Ironically though, there was one moment that Shannan and I were describing the same thing—but we were looking in different directions. I saw Dumbledore, whose face was slowly caving in, with a really long beard that ended in his dead hand, and Shannan saw the same thing, only from a different direction.

The imagination is capable of seeing pretty much anything—you can make up something on your own, or you can convince yourself that you're seeing the same thing the person next to you is seeing. Left to our own cloud interpretations though, I noticed somewhat of a pattern among the things we saw, a pattern that probably would have been more prominent if the light had stayed with us a little bit longer.

Tyrel generally saw abstract shapes—smiley faces, triangles, and blobs. However, he did get a little more imaginative at the end—he did describe an angular fish that looked fierce. Shannan and I got a kick out of that.

Shannan tended to see things that were not of this world—a space ship, aliens, and the Star Trek symbol. And Shannan is often not entirely on Earth—she's usually off playing with her characters from her books. Whenever we have a rehearsal, Kimberly has to ask her several times: "Are you in this world, Shannan?"

I'm not going to try to interpret what I saw—that would be cheating. But as a summary, some of the things I saw were an elephant, a sea horse, Dumbledore, and the phantom of the opera. I don't really see a connection among all of those things. Maybe someone else will be able to make sense of me.

So aside from making for a very enjoyable evening, cloud gazing can tell you a lot about a person—how they think, what they think about, and to what extent they use their imaginations. Maybe I'll start instating cloud-gazing activities on all of my future dates. Maybe that'll be a better monitor regarding whether a possible relationship could come out of it—it's either that or make the decision based on feelings or something.

Then again, I think I'll just leave cloud gazing out of the complicated portions of life and just enjoy it for the simplistic entertainment that it is.

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