I tend to ask a lot of questions. I like to poke at things and ask why things are done the way they’re done. I turn contraptions of our society upside down, walk around them hemming and hawing, chewing and spitting out the occasional sunflower seed, and even kick at the tires. In effect, I make people nervous. Especially those silly people who follow rules and leaders blindly. They’ve never learned any 20th century history, most likely.
I’ll stare at rules, laws, meeting agendas, policies, handbooks…anything I’m presented with really, as it’s all fair game for the mind to tackle. I’ll ask for guidance on next steps; ask for the big picture from A-Z. I’ll bend down, check out their undercarriages, peer at them suspiciously, ask them who their leader is while throwing up a Spock hand signal. I’ll chew gum and blink; see if it blinks back in Morse code asking for help and mercy. And then, eventually, I’ll ask the question that has toppled empires, dethroned monarchs, and even stopped people from enjoying their ice cream before it melts on a hot summer day: “Why?” In essence, I can thin your patience quicker than a locomotive running over a shiny penny. Choo choo!
I did this recently with a work task I was assigned; I was volun-told to be the hiring coordinator for an interviewing committee. Swish, swish– the questions went out through the gate faster than Greyhounds chasing the Easter bunny. I watched through my webcam as people’s smiles twitched and their patience frayed like a 1930’s pair of Levi jeans. Eventually I did what I do in awkward situations–I fell on the sword. I said “I know I’m probably driving you nuts with all my questions.” Oh, that was the pebble holding back the Hoover Dam. And over I fell–splat!
The act of falling on your face can be seen as an art. Sure, you’ll look stupid–you might even find’s someone half chewed gum on the floor stuck to your cheek. But the knowledge gained–the conversations to be had with the ants found on the ground. The funny way people look when you’re staring up at them, as they stare at you like a constipated bull frog. It’s a true experience, not likely to be forgotten. And eventually, someone helps you up, dusts off your disheveled hair, and says “Job well done; thank you for your work today.” You see–all those questions paid off, eh?
And then you can lolly-skip your way back home, ice cream and ant farm in tow. Now you’re free. You’re free to ask questions of the seagulls, the sky, animals and God–especially God. So shout it loud, shout it proud–I am a questioner. And I sometimes fall on my face doing it.
Cheers and happy writing.