So this is what is on my turntable: Synchronicity I, Synchronicity, The Police, 1983, vintage vinyl
I slide the record from its sleeve, flip to side A. The needle hovers over Track I for a moment and then descends. Synchronicity I. My son enters the room. Something tells me it’s time this child of ‘07 hears an artifact from ‘83. A staccato sequencer begins a six-note cycle. Sting rumbles forward on the bass. Stuart Copland is beating the heck out of his kit. Andy Summer shimmers rock and roll power chords. The little one and I both hook in. We are powerless. The collective unconscious is expressed through us kinesthetically. Our heads nod to the quick beat.
With one breath, with one flow
You will know
One of us wears, from eyebrows down, black-rimmed-Buddy Holly glasses, a stretched out favorite t-shirt and weekend-only jeans. The other one wears a red fire fighter helmet and… Well, that’s it.
A sleep trance, a dream dance
A shaped romance
I’m not sure why the boy is naked. I’m not even sure how. I don’t think he could pull off the whole procedure himself. I do know that the little one’s expression has suddenly become alarmingly serious. He has dropped his little boogie. Now he is pure concentration. What is it, son? Has Sting’s message of parallel causality suddenly become evident? Are you shockingly aware that cause and effect are expressions of both conscious and unconscious realities?
A connecting principle
Linked to the invisible
I know this look. This is no mere coincidence. You do not just find yourself inexplicably naked in the dining room. A potty chair does not just happen to be sitting next to you. Your papa does not just happen to be listening to a pop interpretation of Jungian synchronicity when he should be doing the dishes. No. This is all happening for a reason.
Logic so inflexible
Yet nothing is invincible
Luckily I have spent much time deeply studying all manner of popular psychology and para-psychology. The bulk of my studies took place one earnest summer in 1993. I was a recent liberal arts graduate and I could not walk past a Kokopelli power crystal without reaching for my wallet. I grew my hair long and used another crystal, with no apparent deodorizing properties, as part of a natural yet ineffective hygiene ritual. Surprisingly, I couldn’t get a date.
If we share this nightmare
Then we can dream
I guide the little one into a sitting position on the potty chair and hand him the album cover. He studies the band’s iconic red, yellow and blue stripes. Sting stares back at us with one eye. The rest of his face is hidden in a book.
If you act as you think
The missing link
“Who dat?’ asks the little one. “That’s Sting,” I inform him. “The book he is reading says Synchronicity by Jung but that’s a pop-friendly interpretation of the book’s true title: Acausal Connecting Principle.”
We know you, they know me
During the earnest summer of 1993 I saw no inconsistency with wearing military surplus pants while carrying the Tao Te Jing (or was it the Tao of Pooh?) in my Guatemalan satchel. I underlined long sections of Jonathan Livingston Seagull, wore moccasins and tore through Carlos Castaneda’s entire oeuvre. I filled Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance with bon mots such as So TRUE! and When will they GET it?
A star fall, a phone call
It joins all
The little one now stares past the surreal album art. He is not completely behind his eyes. His mouth slightly parts. He is reaching beyond himself.
It's so deep, it's so wide
That summer two friends and I rented a trailer home in the Sandia Mountains outside Albuquerque, New Mexico. Rent was $300 a month split three ways leaving us sufficient money for giant jugs of Gallo wine, and infinite recursions of Ramen noodles and beans and rice. We worked a bit, and wandered the desert the rest of the time. The Hundredth Monkey convinced me that world peace was within our grasp. We all just had to GET it.
Effect without cause
Sub-atomic laws, scientific pause
“I did it!’ yells the little one. He jumps up. His fire fighter helmet falls to the floor with a crash. I examine the contents of the potty chair like tea leaves.
“Hurray?” I say.
“Hurray!” says the little one. We both dance. We empty the contents into the toilet. I permit him to flush the toilet. Today it is his prerogative! (Is this the first time Bobby Brown and Sting have met in a blog? See, Synchronicity!)