Thursday, July 12, 2012

Pecan Pie. The Perfect One

Marcos' search for the perfect pecan pie (portuguese 'torta de nozes'), in his expat country, remembered me of a quote that gives direction to my life for so long. It's a quote I discovered more than 30 years ago in the book 'Zen and the art of motorcycle maintenance' from Robert Pirsig, page 84: 
She nodded dutifully and went out. But just before her next class she came back in real distress, tears this time, distress that had obviously been there for a long time. She still couldn’t think of anything to say, and couldn’t understand why, if she couldn’t think of anything about all of Bozeman, she should be able to think of something about just one street.

He was furious. "You’re not looking!" he said. A memory came back of his own dismissal from the University for having too much to say. For every fact there is an infinity of hypotheses. The more you look the more you see. She really wasn’t looking and yet somehow didn’t understand this.

He told her angrily, "Narrow it down to the front of one building on the main street of Bozeman. The Opera House. Start with the upper left-hand brick."

Her eyes, behind the thick-lensed glasses, opened wide. She came in the next class with a puzzled look and handed him a fivethousand-word essay on the front of the Opera House on the main street of Bozeman, Montana. "I sat in the hamburger stand across the street," she said, "and started writing about the first brick, and the second brick, and then by the third brick it all started to come and I couldn’t stop." 
The image of focusing on just one random brick in a building makes it so easy for me to: write a blogpost, listen to music, share a dream, pick a book to read or start a conversation. It's sooooooooo obvious for me but I realize that it's not a natural modus for everyone. 
Start with This pecan pie. Start with That pecan pie. Perfect pecan pies are born ... step by step ... brick by brick. Out of patience and concentration. Breath in. Breath out.

P.S. I'm on holiday for the next 4 weeks. Write me a letter every day :)