Those of you who, like me, are addicted to the sitcom The Big Bang Theory know that the situations, actions and background that drive the weekly plots are based on true science. And I strived to do the same for Heaven’s Ant Farm. Now for some unknown reason, my favorite part of each Big Bang show is the vanity card written by Chuck Lorre, one of the show’s creators that appears at the end of each episode.
But you have to be ready for a speedy read because the cable network usually fast forwards the vanity card image that contains three to five hundred words that you have to absorb—in about ¼ of a second. The only way to digest and appreciate these fleeting moments of sometimes funny and dark brilliance (don’t tell Chuck I said that) is to use your DVR to slow or freeze the image. This use of my DVR to slow things down reminds me of the plot trick I used to fast forward time in Earth’s universe to drive Heaven’s Ant Farm story line (see my Diddling With Time blog). Perhaps that’s why this is always my favorite part of the show.
Anyway, while watching the credits to The Big Bang Theory the other night, I used my trusty DVR, like Yahweh uses his Pearly Gates holoviewer to watch the happenings on Earth, to slow down and see Chuck’s vanity card image #383. And I was disturbed to see some rather strong parallels to my profession despite our very different careers.
So I thought I’d make a few modifications to Chuck’s card to create and share my first vanity card with you. CAUTION: It’s based on the dark side of reality. Here, goes. . .
Vanity Card #1
For me, the epiphany came at 30 years old when I woke up to the fact that the principles I was taught as a child, like fairness and justice, have no place in the world of power and money. The rules of the sandbox, strictly enforced by a wise and compassionate adult, are laughable when the sandbox is Wall St. high finance and there are Mercedes, BMWs and Porsches stacked up high in the parking garages. So I played the game. . .very well I might add.
What’s odd is that twenty years later, despite my belated awakening, to the reality of amorality, that old schoolyard programming continues to insist on its rightness. Ideas like “play nice,” “share your toys,” “no name-calling,” “take turns,” “misbehaving gets punished” and “mind your own business” still resonate inside me as if they were some sort of fundamental truths. Of course, I now know that they are not. At best, they’re ideals. Lofty goals to aspire to. The truisms of the real world are more along the lines of, “my ball, my bat, my rules,” “money and power talks, bullshit walks” and “my way or the highway.” Which brings me to my present situation. A classic showdown between the lessons we all learned as children and well. . .reality.
Further complicating the situation is our collective, unconscious desire to be supervised by that wise and compassionate adult. But there is no such adult. The truth is, we are alone in the sandbox. The game we play, seeming forever, is called “Ideas vs Money and Bats.” For what it’s worth, I’m betting on the latter but the young 29 year old part of me continues to insist on voting for the former. But no matter what, this too I will survive.
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