From the Desk of Madame Zuchini

Hopeless Recidivists

A good friend of mine once said, the meaning of life can be reduced to three words: Wash, rinse, repeat.

Routine. Some find a sense of order and comfort in it, still others would rather be consigned  to daily paper cuts than conform. The alarm rings, you get up, you shower, brush your teeth, have coffee and go to work. You drive the same drive, you do the same work, you come home to your evening routine, go to bed, then wake up and do it all again. Is this comforting or does it make you want to eat chocolate pop tarts  until you implode?  Routine. An old subject, related as much to Socrates and Plato as pastrami on rye. They may have said it differently, but so many souls long for a freer existence.   But does a freer existence exist?

Bohemians may eschew the routine of the business world, the workaday world, but they still have to wash, rinse, repeat. Or at least one can only hope they do.  Madame once ran away to join the circus. At first the freedom from routine was exhilerating and Madame flew through the air with the greatest of ease, ( metaphorically speaking, Madame, has a phobia of thin ropes and therefore stays pretty much at ground level).

Note to self: write article concerning phobia of thin ropes. Literal or existential phobia; literal  or existential thin ropes?

After awhile  even the-free flowing of time in the circus became routine. The very varieties of events  happening willy nilly all over the day, became itself a dull and quiet routine. Put up the tents, take down the tents, put on bells and whistles, perform act, take off bells and whistles, avoid bearded lady and so forth. So, Madame wonders, what is  routine except living your life the same as you did yesterday, and expecting as much the following day? I suppose one could change up one’s lunch  hour, but even then the routine of having to change up one’s lunch hour becomes oppressive. (Routine differentiated from A  routine, which is an act used to take others out of the mundane and into a fantasy, or perhaps an act to make others believe you are someone other than yourself, in either case, when done more than twice,  is once again  relegated to merely routine.)

Can one stop the merry go round of mindless mediocrity?  Only if one is willing to have bad oral hygiene.  Is it even good to eradicate routine from one’s life?   Is acceptance of routine the death knell of freedom or the spawn of growing up?  Does the acceptance relegate us to a life of patterned desperation? What would one fill the vacuum it’s absence would incur? Anarchy? The next pandemic?  Disorder? Is Disorder even possible. For even the ultimate finding of Chaos Theory is that out of random disorder comes predictable routine.

Madame believes that routine is inherent in everything we do, whether we are circus folk, or bohemians or librarians or accountants.  Youth will yearn for excitement and freedom from routine, but they will soon find that even the disorder of their lives carries with it a routine, a sub-routine, if you will.  Madame believes that to accept routine is to be enlightened, to live with it contentedly, a pact with the world.  Sure you can take another route to work, you can brush your teeth before you shower, you can put your pants on two legs at a time, but even that will turn into an alternate routine.  So what do we do?  We find our own meaning of life and let routine have that small segment of our lives it is born to conquer. We have other more important conquests to make, like teaching the cat to sit. Let routine have it’s moments of glory and then squeeze from it all the anarchy you can.

And with that, Madame will pour  her Friday Reisling, sit in her favorite chair and watch Everybody Loves Raymond. Wash, rinse, repeat.  Madame out.