Monday, September 18, 2017

Хороший мальчик

One of the joys about working from home and not with a gun to my head to meet some falsified deadline, is the liberty to step away from the computer and the shoestring budgets and the fakakta strategies, to do as I please.

Yesterday, I did just that.

I was pleased to take my oldest daughter on a little field trip. We got in the car and drove to a Culver City gem, the Museum of Jurassic Technology. Turns out she had never been there.

This is odd considering the museum's incredible proximity. I could literally land a golf ball on their roof with two mighty swings of a titanium driver.

Why then didn't we walk? Because even though my wife are avid hikers and log more than 50,000 steps a week, my daughters are not walkers.

It's just an incongruity of life one must accept.

Not unlike the little known Soviet Space Dogs, who pioneered our extraterrestrial adventures in search of rubber balls and meat treats. Here we learned the exploits of Laika, Belka and Strelka, canine predecessors to the much more famous Sputnik program. The efforts, and drugged napping, of these dogs has been immortalized in beautiful Soviet style posters.

In a weird (perhaps intentional) turn of fair play, the museum also featured a unique display outlining the history and magical lyricism of the Cat's Cradle.

This multimedia display had everything. A look back to the origin of the Cat's Cradle. Artwork depicting its use in torturing political prisoners. There was even a tactile area, where a disembodied voice (there are a lot of disembodied voices at this museum) will guide you through some of the more intricate Cat's Cradles you can do should you choose to pick up one of the loops of strings handled by thousands of other visitors.

Sadly, one of my favorite displays was gone. Or, perhaps we missed it. Some of the rooms in the museum are very poorly lit. Others, simply smell bad and are very uninviting. Of course, I'm talking about the robust exhibit of ancient cures and medical treatments.

We humans have some strange ideas on treating illnesses. Today, we put hot stones on our backs. Pour melted wax in our ears. Or go on 7 day lemon juice/yoga cleanses. But our ancestors knew much better.

To cure bedwetting for instance, they would make their children or husbands eat this...

Do yourself a favor and visit this incredible museum, wedged between an auto body shop and a bodega that sells awful smelling Indian spices. It's well worth the $8 admission. And you'll exit the place wondering...

"What the fuck was that all about?"

Which is quite an achievement considering the President of the United States is still defending the fine character of white supremacists and neo-Nazis.

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