Entry 17: About furniture (again) . . .

The occasion that prompted this post was just one in a long string of all-too-common denial-of-service attacks perpetrated by an ignorant, easily distracted, virtually untrainable hands upon us, the long-suffering human forced to navigate the frequent idiocies instigated by our dullard hands. In short, we wished to exit our domicile to quickly survey the status of our back yard. For once, our hands was immediately available to slide open the back door. We recall thinking, How curious that we did not have to wait even a moment or have to badger our hands for service. Once we’d exited the premises (during that exit, we vaguely remember, our hands mumbled something like, “You’ll be sorry, I’m leaving, enjoy the outdoors for eight hours—” but, we mean, what are we to make of such gibberish?) our hands slid the door shut and we heard the familiar shock-inducing click that indicated the door had been permanently sealed. Upon hearing the click, and realizing that our hands had clearly misinterpreted our expectations, we turned to protest, but our hands had already left the room, and soon thereafter we heard his metal creature rumble awake and then run off and we knew that we’d been abandoned outside, with no access to our house, until that wretched hands of ours returned several hours later in his metal creature.

At this juncture, facing several hours outdoors, when one or two a day is more than enough, we uttered a common human curse, which is difficult to translate into any hands language, because all of them are so completely unsophisticated and lacking in nuance but, basically, we muttered,

—Move! Quit blocking the sun! And stop moving, while you’re at it!

Yes, the apparent ‘what-hands-would-call’ contradictory commands are present in the original curse, though to our mind, there is no contradiction. Humans, even those who don’t quite live up to their full potential, can easily do four or five things at once, with each of those things being completely antagonistic to every other thing. So, is it too much to ask our poor hands to manage a mere two things at once? Apparently.

The point is that the move / don’t move dynamic referenced in this particular human oath alludes to the less-than-complimentary designation frequently applied to hands by disgusted and exasperated humans: furniture. What makes hands furniture so problematic as opposed to any other furniture is the ability of hands furniture to move independently. Admittedly—

[And let us say right now that when we began blogging we never anticipated having to “admit” anything to the hands fortunate enough to read our blog; note, “Admissions” is not one of the categories included in our blog’s subtitle. And forget “having to,” we couldn’t foresee “needing to,” under any circumstances. Still, we are also not completely unaware of the value of humility (especially feigned humility, which is what we practice), and have decided that making ourselves more accessible to minor creatures (or as hands would label them, “the little people”) has a pronounced upside. Hands, like all semi-sentient creatures, long to bask in the approval of their betters, and when humans, in response to this adoration, play the ‘humble card,’ hands pretty much melt into a puddle of slobbering gratitude, which in turn makes them all the more tractable going forward.]

Admittedly, moving furniture has its advantages. For example, a hands lap that can be used and enjoyed in multiple locations is preferable to a piece of furniture that remains rooted to one spot. At the same time, moving furniture very rarely moves when it should. Rather, humanity has to suffer the perpetual aggravation of their furniture stopping the scheduled grooming and abruptly moving, often by flinging a hapless human to the side or dropping a completely shocked human to the floor. Admittedly—there’s that word again!—our attempts to fashion hands to be completely compliant pieces of furniture when circumstances demand have obviously not been completely successful, and this lack of control remains a major unresolved issue between humans and hands. At least that’s the way humans see it: until just now, hands likely were unaware there even was an issue, or that humans regard them as furniture.

Until the “moving furniture problem” is resolved (by which we mean, a time when the furniture only moves when and where we want it to), humans will continue to employ a number of moving furniture oaths, curses, quips, sayings, aphorisms, insults, jokes, jests, jibes, adages, etc. etc. ad infinitum to fully express our exasperated efforts to manage hands furniture. For example, it happens almost inevitably that when two humans meet and exchange salutary pleasantries that one of the two will invoke the following in response to the conventional query, “So, how’re you doing?” “Not bad, if you ignore all the moving furniture.” Or imagine an ordinary encounter of two humans in ordinary, everyday circumstances (translated from human language into the nearest hands equivalent): “Dude, how’s it hangin’?” “Aah, what can I say? Too much moving furniture.” “I hear ya, man, I hear ya.” Or the truncated response of the irritated human: “Hey, what’s up?” “The usual: moving furniture.” “Bummer, man, bummer.” [Again, we wish to emphasize that these crude translations reflect the insufficiencies of hands language and do not accurately represent the refined modes of communication that humans use.]

Complaints about moving furniture have evolved into more generalized, all-encompassing expressions of dissatisfaction. Meaning, humans now utter various furniture curses even when hands have nothing to do with the situation being cursed. So, for example, a human looking out a window and seeing that it is raining might simply say to themselves, “Furniture!” A translation of this curse in English would probably be that all-purpose, four-letter ‘f’ word, which our hands has banned from our blog. And like that f-word, the word ‘furniture’ in human language has acquired a number of uses and applications due to its ability to be used as a noun, a pronoun, an adjective, a determiner, a verb, an adverb, a preposition, a conjunction, and an interjection. Also, in rare instances, furniture can be used as an article.

But, no need to get sidetracked by linguistics. Actually, it is probably time to just end this post. Looking back at the length of this entry, we are chastising ourselves for being so thorough, and for constantly forgetting that our intended audience has the attention span of an inebriated fruit fly. During one such memory lapse, we considered adding a third furniture post to briefly describe our own personal approach to moving furniture, which is decidedly limited, compared to other humans. We only attempt to use moving furniture when said furniture is in a completely reclining position during the early morning hours. Both the time and position insure that the furniture’s propensity to move is at its lowest possible level.

Sun save us all, look what’s happening! We’re beginning to write the post we just decided not to write. And we’re also beginning to understand all that hands yammering about whether it’s a good thing to spill the entire content of their lives and their brains onto the internet. It’s quite seductive, this blogging. A famous hands once wrote: “We shape our tools and thereafter our tools shape us.” We must be cautious: this blog, this hands tool, may be shaping us in insidious ways, making us act more and more like hands, and if there’s one thing this world doesn’t need, it’s more hands.