Tuesday, November 3, 2009

A New Leaf

Walking through a perfectly normal park I saw a leaf hovering, apparently unsupported, in direct contravention to the laws of gravity:

I meandered over, expecting it to drop as I did so, but it declined and, even as I got closer, it stayed resolutely stuck to the same bit of air like a blip in the matrix, only this time the blip was a leaf and the matrix was reality.


Reality or not, this leaf was in complete denial that there was a planet beneath it exerting a pull that should have dragged it to the ground. It was achieving something that even the cleverest, lightest human being could not achieve without the aid of some powerful rotors and a lot of fuel. It hung there with an insouciance that only a dead, floating oak leaf can achieve, almost mocking in its disdain for laws.

I mean honestly, if things like leaves aren't going to adhere to gravity, it makes you wonder why Isaac Newton invented it in the first place. I know, it's very handy for harvesting apples and, you know, stopping us falling of the Earth and that, but it can't be one rule for us and one for leaves. That would just lead to anarchy.

I should imagine.

I got closer, and the leaf refused to budge:

There was no wind to keep it up. It had obviously fallen from the trees behind, but halfway down had decided that it didn't want a future as worm-poo and humus, and would stay where it was, thank you very much.

Being of sound analytical mind and objective reductionist bent, I quickly formulated a hypothesis, tested it using common sense and everything I knew about floating leaves, and thus came up with an iron-clad theory about why the leaf could just float in the air when everything else around it had to plummet like Vanilla Ice's career.

It was like an epiphany. No. It was an epiphany! In a flash of intellectual insight, it came to me.

Magic done it.

People aren't that into believing in real magic anymore, which is a shame because here was some proper evidence. A leaf, hanging in the air. It was a wonder, no mistake, and I felt like telling everyone about it. Maybe shouting about it on street corners or going from door to door to tell them where they could see it for themselves, or if not that they could totally take my word for it because I saw it, so what more proof do they need?

Actually, that might be a problem. People have had too many emails from ousted Nigerian economic ministers recently to trust anyone these days.*

I know. Words. People trust words, even venerate them for no good reason. If I wrote about it people would become similarly enamoured with the idea of a leaf being held up by magic, and would come to the only appropriate conclusion that it must be the work of some supernatural force.

Perhaps a higher supernatural force.

I mean, we can't hold a leaf up in the air using just the power of our thoughts so anything, or anyone, that could must have a superior mind!

Maybe infinitely superior.

And if an infinitely superior mind can do something that requires such defiance of the universally accepted dogma that is modern physics, it stands to reason that it would find regulating the rest of our lives a doddle.

If I put this down, along with my conclusions, in a tome of some kind, surely some folk will realise that it is the truth. Actually, it might save a lot of time and effort for all involved if I just write it down as unassailable fact, and then it stops all the tedious arguing that people are wont to do.

I'm not being overly paternalistic when I say this, but it's just that I've already thought it all through, and come to what can only be described as the right conclusion, so what's the point in everybody else going through all that rigmarole, when they can just read, memorise and accept my own divinely-guided meditations? It's like I'm providing a service which stops people having to think for themselves.

The fact that all of this has come from such a simple thing as a floating leaf just strengthens the argument that this supernatural force is superior, in that it knew all it would take to show me how the universe works was to provide me with a simple sign.

All praise!

You there! You're not praising.

I'll remember that.

Now, although I have obviously been fortunate enough to receive the honour of the sign, I would be the first to concur that I am no better than anyone else. It's simply that I have been . . . what's the word . . . chosen?

Yes. Chosen.

Messiah is probably too strong a word, but I am also humble enough to know that if the crown fits . . .

Perhaps an altar, or some sort of large, suitably extravagant building could be constructed at the very site of the Miracle of the Floating Leaf. It's only a car park and recreation area for the local community centre, so it's not as though it benefits many people. A quick fund-raising bash should get me a enough, so I can get the place built and gold-cladded, maybe with a few mill on the side for expenses because after all, I'm not a charity, and what price ultimate truth eh?

A beautiful future awaited anyone who accepted my view of the universe. Not such a rosy outlook for the naysayers, but let's face it, they wouldn't be around for that much longer, and then the world would be in harmony.

Breathing deeply, flushed with potential, I took a respectful, closer look at the focal point of this imminent shift in humanity's future.

Turns out there was a strand of silk holding it up.

Bloody everyday nature, spoiling the imagined majesty of supernatural forces.

* Damn you, Honest Ngozi.


  1. "had to plummet like Vanilla Ice's career"

    I had to excuse myself after reading that sentence.

    Perhaps the leaf was a follower of the chosen messiah silk?

  2. AHA! no way. I have these moments all the time

  3. f8hasit - lol. Very good.

    miss.chief - Glad it's not just me then.

    thinkinfyou - They will only be damned if they don't believe!

  4. I have an image in my mind of you running over with a small hoop and passing it all around the leaf like a magician to prove there were no supporting wires.

  5. Wonderfully descriptive, I wanted to skip to the end to read the outcome I was that taken in by your writing style.

    Nicely done indeed.

  6. Oh good, it was nothing wrong with your eyes then...

  7. SkylersDad - Glad I didn't, for the illusion would've been ruined!

    Jimmy - Thanks, although I'm sure a lot of people would like to skip to the end.

    Eric - Just the organ that interprets the images.

  8. It was definitely magic... there was no silk strand holding it up... that was all in your imagination.

  9. You had me believing until you shattered the illusion. I would've worshipped you.

  10. But still, to the naked eye, it floats. And if seeing is believing... Well, then, you are the Messiah. I do believe.

  11. Ah, lucky my morning coffee's long drunk or the screen would have been wearing it...

  12. The falling leaf (foglia secca) was perfected by Didi in 1958.

  13. Something about this (topic) made me think of Carl Sagan's 'Demon Haunted World.'

    Yes, I'm a nerd.

  14. Jules,

    "...a strand of silk holding it up."

    It's a thin line between "the chosen one" and "Ice, Ice Baby".


  15. CatLadyLarew - But . . . it looked so real.

    Tennyson ee Hemingway - Hey, I'm not stopping you. It's just now it'll have to be for more mundane reasons like sex appeal and charisma

    Ana - You're right! I believe anything I tell me.

    omchelsea - It's every bloggers dream to ruin a readers VDU.

    GB - Wasn't he one of Picasso's contemporaries?

    Hunter - I would like to think of myself as a successor to Carl Sagan, only without the intellect, insight and writing abilitiies. Apart from that, we're both like candles unto the dark.

    U - LOL.

  16. Damn those tricksy silk threads.

  17. From the very start of the post, I was raising my hand frantically, like Ooh! *arm waving* OOH! *eager face* The Jules!! I Know!! It's a spider web, The Jules!! I figured it out, The Jules!!

    And this is why I wasn't very popular in school.

  18. Ellie - . . . what? . . sorry . . . just looking at your pic . . . mmm . . . silk.

    Steamy - Well done. I've made a special, extra glittery gold star for you, with Becky on it in LEDs. All the cool kids will notice you now!

  19. And I am the kid in class who knows it is a spider web but won't raise her hand because she is way too shy so Steamy gets called on and gets the gold star.

    And this is why I was not popular in school.

  20. But how did the leaf generate a strand of silk?

    Miracle ON!!!

    (great post btw)

  21. Lead me master that I may know your majesty...
    Just a thought....are there many Juniper bushes around your way?

  22. Nanodance - Oh we all know the answer after I've revelaed it don't we? Right, glittery, gold, LED-emblazoned stars for all.

    Soda and candy - Excellent. You've reinterpreted the facts to suit our goals! I was going to say it wasn't meant to be taken literally or something, but yours is more scientific! Yay!

    Pash - Jolly good. Keep it up. We've not got that many juniper bushes round this way. Will bramble do?

  23. as i wove a wicked tale for mike, the world here is in harmony, if only by a strand

  24. Bloody everyday nature, what a bastard. But Isaac Newton only invented gravity for the sake of Australians: the rest of us avoid falling off the Earth by standing on it the right way up.

  25. I was thinking 'Life of Brian' master!

  26. john - Wise words.

    Gadjo - I thought they had some sort of extra long bat-like toenails or something, hence their copious utilisation of flip-flops.

    Pash - Oh THOSE juniper bushes? Another miracle! It would appear that I am both the messiah AND a naughty boy.

  27. I never had any doubt that you were a naughty boy...

  28. I had visions of being your Mary Magdalene. I rather fancied it. I am plunged into disappointment now.

  29. Pash - I AM naughty. Just yesterday I drank milk straight from the bottle.

    Mdme DeF - Ooh, that makes me cross.

  30. WHAT?..you're worse than I thought.... Thats just sick! LOL


I'm going to risk taking comment moderation off for a bit, so if you're a web-bot, a robot, a bot-fly or a bottom-dwelling sediment-feeder, then please refrain from commenting.

Otherwise, have a go. S'fun.