The picture on my Facebook page was of a set of stairs. I recognized them as those that led to a Chinese restaurant I frequented when I worked in the city. The food was good and cheap, and customers appreciated the fast service. If I arrived for lunch alone, I’d usually find a table of friends who would make room for me.
“Is the restaurant still thriving?” I typed in the comment section. A wave of nostalgia swept over me as I wrote. The reply came as a disappointment. “Its’ been out of business for 20 years!”
Moments later, I sat down to glance through my new alumni magazine. I turned to the “In Memoriam” section to verify that, unlike Tuck Lung, I hadn’t gone out of business. Relieved that my name didn’t appear, I flipped to the opening remarks of the college President. A line in her message stood out. “…the measure of student success and the value of a college diploma can[‘t} be measured by a paycheck. ” (Reed Magazine, September 2022, pg. 2.)
I gave an involuntary nod as I read. Life without learning is a bowl of unsalted potato chips. It lacks piquancy.
An ancient mystic was once asked what he’d miss most about life after he’d died. He said he’d miss watching the clouds. As I was young and made no sense of his remark, I presumed it was profound. Today, I’d disagree. What I’d miss was learning. Thankfully, at 86, I remain capable of it. For example, the same alumni publication taught me about Bouba/kiki.
I’ll explain with a question. Which of the two words above evokes an image of roundness? Which suggests spikes? Generally, people throughout the globe respond with the same answer. Bouba is round. Kiki is spiked. Our responses are congruent because scientists suppose the brain links visual and oral experiences according to how we shape our spoken words.
Knowing the difference between Bouba and kiki won’t add a penny to my purse. I am richer because I’ve discovered another connection in this infinitely connected universe.
Keeping current with the times has value. I won’t drive to Tuck Lung for a plate of Egg Foo Young when I have a craving.
Imagine the consequence of postponing computer upgrades. I raise this example for a reason. My desktop needs an overhaul. Next week reprise blogs will appear on my page as placeholders. After the technician finishes messing with my data and my life, I face a system learning curve. I wish I could embrace the challenge with the sense of fun I experienced when I discovered Bouba/kiki.