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Monday, December 17, 2012

The Secret & The Tree, The Tao of Gizmo

The Tao of We

"Sometimes we are the secret, and sometimes we are the tree."

Moonrise Kingdom
A loose discussion in May prompted by Moonrise Kingdom made me utter this thought:  Sometimes we are the secret, and sometimes we are the tree. Moonrise Kingdom illustrates the case where we are both: the confidence and the confidant.

It jostles slightly that it was no tree after all. Memory failed. It was a portion of stone building in In the Mood for Love that I pulled the analogy from. But the idea remains: Sometimes we are the secret, sometimes we are the tree.

Wong & Doyle mesmerize

Sometimes we are both. Sometimes we are neither. In the Tao of Gizmo, the aim is to eschew the cases where we are knowingly neither and knowingly want neither to be.


A few months ago, I went into the ocean with someone wearing a Gizmo shirt.
It made me want to go back and watch Gizmo in Gremlins, a movie I haven't seen in unknown years. After watching, it seemed apropos the person wearing the shirt was wearing the shirt--he was a genuinely good and honest person. I was moved to write a friend about the Tao of Gizmo.

Gremlins gives us nice, fuzzy Gizmo. A mysterious mogwai. Sometimes he's hungry, but he knows he can't be fed after midnight, even if his keeper doesn't know. He nods no.

The 3 rules of Gremlins/mogwai are: no bright or direct sunlight, no getting wet, and no feeding after midnight. Hunger or no, Gizmo takes into account consequences, beyond self-interest. He stays aware of what's better for the whole, not just himself, and keeps that in mind while making choices.

Stripe lets loose in Gremlins
Stripe, Gizmo's accidental spawn by water, is the opposite: the pinnacle of indulgence and disregard. Spike does whatever passes his fancy. At one point, he even wields a chainsaw as a threat. Stripe is what happens when you disregard your Gizmo: doing what you know is not right for you and is potentially detrimental to others.

Your Tao

In the past 2 years, my heart has broken fully at least 4 times, my faith in humanity shaken completely once. My heart quakes still watching certain scenes in movies. Due to memories made and memories not made. More importantly though, the opportunity to break the hearts of others seems to constantly abound. And in those moments, where selfish wants or motives could prevail, remember Gizmo.

Passing delights, victories, and band-aids always have greater ranging consequences which ripple out and tidal wave us all. There is no "getting away with" anything. Whether it be too much chocolate or too little heart. If you know something's wrong, it's wrong. If you know something is right, then fight. Be a compass, be *your* compass.

Moonrise Kingdom left me speechless because it was so pure in its representation of love and trust: where we are the secret and we are the tree.

You want to be the secret, you have to be the tree.

Be the Gizmo. As you would have others be to you.
You cannot expect more than you yourself give.

Farewell to you, 2012. Fare well, New Penzance.

Moonrise Kingdom

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