Ask Old Jules: Objects as symbols, Package design, Effect greater than cause, World of Warcraft conflict

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Old Jules, what objects can we use as symbols to teach us truths?

A mirror to help you remember that no matter how others might see you it’s  you, knowing what’s behind the face, who has to recognize what’s back there that you don’t love and respect.

A mirror to help you remember truth is what’s really beyond what you see in the mirror and you are the only one who knows it.

A mirror to remind you what’s visible to you is the only person you own, the only person you can demand anything from and expect to get it, the only person you can change.

A mirror to remind you what you think of that person and why you think it is the most important facet of your life.

Old Jules, does packaging design affect your choice in what to buy?

I buy everything in thrift stores, flea markets, farmers markets and garage sales if I can. Every stitch of clothing I wear comes from those from my hat to my boot heels except what I have to buy at a grocery store or feed store.

My cats insist I buy them Purina because of the design on the bag, most likely. My chickens don’t care about the design of the bags unless they contain whole corn, which they won’t touch.

I suppose if those folks running the places where I buy things other people didn’t want packaged them, I might form an opinion about the design and packaging. Thus far it hasn’t come to that.

I’m personally fond of the design of onions (clever way to put together a legume, thinks I), sweet potatoes (aesthetic), potatoes (functional), celery (I like that cove for putting cheese and peanut butter into), and carrots (I like the color).

Old Jules, can an effect be greater then its cause?

  • Consider gunpowder. It had been in China for several hundred years and was used for entertainment and primitive weaponry. It was not responsible for creating nor stopping any particular changes.

Trade and curiosity ’caused’ it to migrate to Europe, where within a relatively short while it changed the entire face of the continent and eventually the world.

Charcoal, saltpetre and sulfur – individually nothing special. Mixed in the proper measures, contained in a sealed vessel, ignited, the energy released is countless times the sum of the individual parts.

Old Jules, my boyfriend plays World of Warcraft on the computer  all the time, what should I do? I’m feeling ignored because he spends hours playing it and we don’t do stuff together like we used to.

Form your thoughts carefully in your mind, tap him on the shoulder and when he shrugs and says, “Hold on a minute,” reach over and unplug the computer. When he turns around tell him politely and calmly exactly what you’ve said here.

If he goes into a rage or continues doing it you’re a damned sight better off without him. He’s not going to change. If he listens you can have a discussion and work out an accommodation to allow both of you to get what you need out of the relationship.

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