Friday, December 19, 2014

expectation

Expectation, the act of expecting, pregnant with meaning. Expectation, connoting hope or desire (or wish fulfillment, consistency, constancy, as in "I expect the sun will rise tomorrow," or obedience to mathematical laws, as in "I expect two plus two will equal four tomorrow"). Expectation: a Latinate thorough looking at. But also a burden. You expect that X, Y, or Z will happen. Or you expect Z, or Y, or X to happen. At least one of them. You are sure of it. It is ordained. Preordained. You anticipate the outcome. You can see it. You can see clearly now. Except for one tiny problem: "it" is not yet now, and when the cosmic clock strikes "now" (where is "now" on the clock's face?) what you saw so clearly turns out to be different. Entirely different. Or nano-different. It is not a matter of better or worse. It is different. It is not what you expected. This new now turns out to be different from your expectation. If you were honest, you would be forced to admit that the outcome, the outcomes plural, of your expectation, your expectations plural, are always different from what you envisioned, what you saw so clearly. Be honest. Isn't that always the case, at least to an infinitesimal degree? To an infinite degree? When did something, anything, ever turn out to be exactly as you expected it to be, fully, in all dimensions, in duration, in intensity, hue, proportion, sound, and sense? So expectation is a setup, if not for disappointment, at least for surprise; if not for surprise, at least for a shift (closer, farther, dimmer, brighter, fuller, emptier) in what you thought you saw, before it even happened, even though you really weren't "seeing" anything yet because there was nothing to see. Except expectation.

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