Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance

Hi Readers. Thanks for coming by.

Perzig’s first book jumped out at me a week-or-so ago out of a box I was packing.  Demanded I go through it yet another time this lifetime.  Which is never a job of work I take lightly.

Decided as I study on it I’d discuss it with the cats when I come to particularly studious parts.  If it seems appropriate I might share some of those discussions with you along the way.  For instance, last night he and his son, along with another couple have progressed to a camp site.  The son’s troubling him a fair amount, but Phaedrus, shadow figure of his past insanity is also peeking into the corners of his mind.

Hydrox:  What does he mean when he says, “Ghosts come back when a person hasn’t been properly buried?  Is he talking about, say, the ghost of all those chickens I keep seeing around here sometimes?”

Me:  Maybe he’s talking about that, partly.  Those chickens aren’t necessarily dead, so far as we know.  And I definitely think that’s a piece of what he’s talking about.  People lost to our lives, but without closure.  But there’s also Mehitabel.  She stayed on permanent mouse patrol all these years.  Never was properly buried.

Hydrox:  Mehitabel?  I’ve just about gotten so I don’t see her anymore.  Thanks goodness.

Niaid:  Wish you hadn’t brought her up.  Gives me the willies.

Me:  The longer we live the more ghosts we tend to accumulate, all those not-properly buried ones who passed through our lives.

Tabby:  Any chance we could bury Shiva?

Me:  You figure she’s gotten around to burying you?

Old Jules

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7 responses to “Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance

  1. Great post with a lot of memories. I have gone back to the Perzig book many times.

  2. I read it when I was a kid in high school, great book!

    • elroyjones: I don’t think it was written yet when I was in HS. That would have been fun. I’ve heard kids read Catcher in the Rye in HS, too, which would also have been fun. Gracias, J

      • I read it at that age but it wasn’t assigned; I was passing time with a boy who was a little bit older and much better read. I’m pretty sure we read Catcher in the Rye and we read Tobacco Road and many Steinbeck novels along with the required classics.
        Our English teacher was pretty progressive; she never married and she was well into her fifties when she taught me. I know there is a story there, a long romance with a married man, a broken heart, lovers galore- I’d really like to know but she’s long gone.

  3. Perhaps a “proper burial” is unnecessary for what is a proper burial after all? Zorba assured the Englishman that not burying Bubulina meant nothing because she was dead…

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