In the Encyclopedia of Me, E is for Epiphanies. “Epiphany” is the term Neil uses to describe the moment when I realize something that is common knowledge to the rest of the world. The most famous epiphany that I had – the one that started it all – occurred oh, eight or nine years ago now.
We were dining at The Outback, when Neil noticed the map on the wall behind me. “Can you tell what’s wrong with that map?” he asked. I took one look at it and, thinking myself quite clever to have figured it out so quickly, said “yeah, Alaska isn’t an island.”
Silence for several seconds.
“What?” he said.
“Alaska. It’s supposed to be an island, but on that map it’s connected to Canada.”
Well, needless to say, I was wrong, and have since found myself the butt of many geography-related jokes at family gatherings In my own defense, just look at a map of the United States sometime – Alaska is always off in a little box by itself, and usually it’s drawn without the connecting land to the East – just one impossibly-straight coastline ) At least I knew it was to the North, and didn’t think it was really hanging out there with Hawaii!
There have been many more of these so-called epiphanies over the years. On the spot, I am having trouble remembering any others except the most recent: A few months ago, while teaching son #1 the words to “Jingle Bells, Batman Smells,” I suddenly realized that the line “Robin lays an egg” has a double meaning – there’s Batman’s sidekick Robin, but also there’s the bird, robin, which really could lay an egg. I was so tickled to figure that out. And yes, I know you probably realized the double-meaning when you were 12. Congratulations.
E is for Epiphanies.