Saturday, March 22, 2008


It happened back in '82.

"Hi my name’s Merkley, what’s your name?” It was the way the unprompted ruse started out. It was in a supermarket in Park City. Merkley had turned to his date who was right behind him in the checkout line. She was the stunning Ms. Lourdes Carvalho 5’ 8” bombshell from Sao Paulo who went along with it immediately. With her tabernacle choir consummately trained voice she harmoniously announced her name in return.

“Hi, I’m Lourdes Carvalho,” she said in a practiced voice so rich why even try to resist it. She caught on to the spur-of-the-moment ruse fast, very fast. They shook hands like they were meeting each other for the first time and all the people in the checkout line are watching as these two people are meeting and striking up an acquaintance spontaneously. Or so it seemed. Everyone is held up for a quite entertaining few moments and they are all absolutely surprised. The cashier too is totally stunned because he doesn’t know what’s going on. He becomes somewhat mortified besides when Merkley and Ms. Carvalho the looker dish then slowly embraced and kissed each other a long time. ‘Long enough for the cashier to scan the bread and the cotto salami and then they slowly disengaged. They quietly paid for their own respective groceries with total composure separately.

Then they both walked out quietly and individually and not with each other like nothing happened. They played it totally straight like two people who did not know each other but met and then were kissing in the checkout line and then parted. Sixty seconds later they had an uproariously good laugh on the parking lot outside the store and could hardly stand up they were laughing so hard and reveling in the idea that they were actually loose enough to do it.

Friday, March 21, 2008


March madness time the 21st day of the month.

This is a new entry and it's been a couple of months since there was one. It's going in because everyday some wacko will ask you to testify as to the veracity of some unknown idiotic fact and you're supposed to know it all. There's a way to handle this but you've got to do it deadpan.
It's called SPAM and we start off with a comparison to a yummy sandwich that you might find at one of those street vendors all covered with dust from the dried up manure on the road and coming too, from the passing animals and people.

SANDWICH ANALOGY So we have a problem. How is an individual supposed to appear like he has brains and at the same time since one is without the exact answer, get out of being expected to know it all?
We all ought to be using the
SANDWICH PROTOCOL OF ACTIVE MANAGEMENT. It’s called SPAM for short. Here's how it works. You can say you do not know. That would be the outside of the sandwich, the two pieces of bread. That way you can end any more humming and hawing. But then you follow that up fast with “but I do know.” That would be the center filling of the tasty sandwich.
That too, could be enough, although once heard, it opens up further questioning. But then you can say again that you really do not know. It's the brown bread again. With that we are beginning to go through the back and forth routine, like someone opening up the sandwich more than once to see what’s in it. Keep in mind in all of this the following salient point: It is precisely what is needed. It is a type of response that stops an inquirer from either feeling that a speaker is not knowledgeable or that she acts too smart. In the process of replying to questions heard, you could easily follow up your first answer with a re-statement that you really do know a little something about what you're talking about.
Now an interesting element of balance is beginning to be heard by the other individual listening to your argument. For one thing he perceives that you are a tad loose to say the least. This moment of equilibrium in your reasoning takes a few seconds to begin occurring. In the going back and forth between the two positions a sort of loose balance is beginning to be perceived. Even though you are not totally sure about what it is you can share as an answer to the questions, you are, in some ways, quite sure.
SMART AND TASTY VICTUALS It is a good sandwich filling of tasty certainty between a couple of slices of chewy uncertainty. Wrap any and all thin slices of ignorance around spammy admissions of lucid comprehension. Or vice-versa. Either way. Two thin slices of knowing on either side of a hefty filling of inexperience also makes a satisfying intellectual victual.

In this way people are made to apply their own minds to the thing they ask of you. And if you’re in a Stay Loose mind set, it is definitely what you want. You might wonder how this can be. As they hear you carry on your own personal debate about whether or not you know everything or how come you know nothing about the question asked, almost always the inquirers have in mind anyway their own tentative takes forming on a forthcoming answer.

But now they begin to see that the questions phrased have more than one facet to them. Some people like a good cold spam sandwich with sandwich spread.

It is in the combining of prepared foods that appeals to them. Tuna with celery is fine. Knowledge and ignorance have always gone hand in hand. Tomatoes with pickles are savory. Wisdom with doubt is a winning combination. It all demonstrates that an accommodation can always be made to the questions asked even if there is not a complete pat answer being applied to the solution. Do you like dealing with a dummy? Or would you rather deal with a know-it-all? So which is best? The answer is only partly clear. How about seeing if you can get in touch with those irritating feelings that develop whenever you think of either one of these hard-to-take entities, the dummy and the smart-aleck. Look at some obviously thoughtless phrases by dummies that you hear uttered regularly. They are on the unthinking side of mouthing off. These expressions pop up daily at work and in casual chitchat. They represent an unawareness of what it is we say when we blab.

So that's it for now and you know what? Keep it in mind and try it out. There's going to be an opportunity coming at you faster than you maybe realize. signed, H. B. Merkley Salt Lake City