Our local zoo has a carousel right inside the door, and before my daughter was born, I had a bit of a cynical/jaded attitude toward the carousel. Literally the first thing the zoo invites you to do is spend more money riding the carousel and you have to walk right past it, where the kids can clearly see it, to do anything else. Which I thought was cheesy or tacky or something else negative.
One day Marty and I were standing in the kitchen talking about carnival games, traditional games and how they're designed to cheat people and how someone can be allowed to win (usually a physical manipulation of the mechanisms) to encourage others in. Then we talked about the gambling games on NeoPets. A slot machine game he liked has disappeared in the past week. We talked about how the programming of those games isn't random, but winning is way more likely than in real games (especially when real games can make winning even LESS likely than random).
The mail came. I had forgotten I had ordered some little tricks and toys from a site I came across looking for something or other. Wonder Workshops, Retro Toys and Science Amusements. [Site isn't there anymore, but the owner is selling on e-bay]
So we played with those things, which were also physically manipulated trick-things.
That all "just happened," but it happened because we've been building up to it with our whole lives and our whole style of communicating and living together in a constant state of open curiosity.
The reason I was thinking of the carnival games is that the other day Holly and I talked about suicide and how many people I've known who committed suicide. One was a guy named Nick who was in the SCA and used to work at a carnival and knew which of the games were Renaissance-old or older, and how to construct and operate them. I hadn't thought of Nick for a long time but Holly's boyfriend's ex girlfriend's husband had killed himself in Arizona. Nick, too, was from Arizona (I didn't mention that to them, but I'm telling you now.)
Once you start looking for connections and welcoming them, it creates a kind of flow that builds and grows.
Note about the wriiting above:
"One day Marty and I..." at the beginning was originally "Today Marty and I.... "Today" in the account had been February 22, 2008, so Marty had turned nineteen a week before, and Holly was sixteen.
The Importance of Answering Questions by Nina, on her blog Amor y Risa ("love and laughter"):
Although it was not my intention to post about all of the questions we answer during the day, this seems to have become a regular part of this blog. These are questions that come up in discussions, during activities, or seemingly out of the blue and they arise out of curiosity and desire to learn.
Jalen Owens had sent art for my video games page, and I sent him a letter and some stamps from a box where I chuck the foreign ones or pretty American stamps, because he collects them. When he sent the art, it had a cover letter and he told me to save it so I would have his signature someday when he's famous. I said I would save it with David Bowie's. He looked on my site to see that letter, and sent this by e-mail:
Thank you for gift of stamps. I don't know who David Bowie is and thought he said when I read the letter he sent you that he wanted to change his name so he wouldn't have the name of Davy Jones the pirate. My mom told me he meant like Davy Jones of The Monkees. We went on Youtube so I could see a David Bowie video and then we watch episodes of The Monkees which I liked. That led to learning they sang a song (I'm a Believer) That was in Shrek. We looked at Switerland because that was the first place David Bowie was married and then Italy. I learned his wife Iman was from Mogadishu Somalia so we looked at that. All of this and more because I sent in some art :). I'm still putting all the stamps together. They're really cool!