Confabulation Confounds Me


My mind swims with words and images. I’m half asleep. Everything seems like a movie I might have seen once a few years ago, but one can’t remember much about it except that certain incidents, characters and settings are familiar. The story itself eludes me.

This is either a shot across the bow by the evil forces of dementia or a warning sign that I’ve bitten off too little of what life has to offer and am merely deeply and seriously bored. Stuck. Just waiting for the end.

On my best days I can delude myself that I’m making progress, but on my worst I’m just bumbling along on auto-pilot. Repeating the same few activities out of habit is not the same as being fully engaged.

Of course, I know the solution is to volunteer my time for some good cause. Join Rotary. Visit orphans and comfort the downtrodden. Embrace some new challenge. Really dive into learning a difficult skill. 

I am tempted to delve deeply into Flapdoodle for its own sake. To become the Irwin Corey of meaningless discourse. To ramble to the point of exhaustion.






Concretia Dementia across the globe


grotto of the redemption

A man named Luang Pu Bunleua Sulilat built bizarre sculpture parks on both sides of the Mekong River, near Vientiane, Laos and Nong Khai, Thailand. In doing this, he was obviously reacting to a compulsion that affects many aging men. In Iowa we have the Grotto of the Redemption near West Bend, Iowa where Father Paul Dobberstein showed the same non-stop enthusiasm and determination to stick stuff together that normally doesn’t belong.

On a smaller scale, you see these things all the time, usually shrines to the local Virgin Mary apparition in people’s back yards, or statues of Buddha of hill tops or in caves. I don’t think there’s a cave in Thailand that doesn’t have several statues of Buddha inside.

The desire to build these probably stems from ever increasing intimations of mortality that prod the builder to leave a legacy. Young men sow oats, old men build sculpture gardens.