Friday, July 27, 2012
A Kaleidoscope operates on the principle of multiple reflection, where several mirrors are together. Typically there are three rectangular lengthwise mirrors. Setting the mirrors at a 60-degrees so that it forms a triangle. 60 degree angle apart from each other creates eight duplicate images of the objects, six at 60°, and four at 90°. As the tube is rotated, the tumbling of the colored objects presents varying colours and patterns. Arbitrary patterns show up as a beautiful symmetrical pattern created by the reflections. A two-mirror kaleidoscope yields a pattern or patterns isolated against a solid black background, while the three-mirror (closed triangle) type yields a pattern that fills the entire field.
Three years ago, for reasons all her own, my mother gave me a kaleidoscope.
I hadn't had a kaleidoscope in my hands since, oh, say, 40 years ago.
It's a silly lookin' thing. Designed with a child in mind, it has yellow and blue stripes, and circus figures on it. And stars.
I thought it was pretty odd, but I wouldn't hurt my mothers' feelings For All The Tea In China, so I took it home with me.
Whilst lyin' a-bed one afternoon I picked it up and peered through it.
The goodies in my kaleidoscope are just cheap beads and crap left over no doubt from some other endeavor that this toy company had layin' around.
But all that cheap stuff does make pretty patterns when held up to the light.
Turn the end and all the pieces fall around and make other patterns. The view is never the same.
Life is like that.
All of the pieces of our lives are in there. Our loved ones, our homes, jobs, likes and dislikes, everything you ARE----all in the object cell and colliding against each other. Changing the pattern of your life.
The events of our lives change the view. Add the birth of a child, it changes. Lose an old friend, it changes again. Change a point of view or an attitude and see the difference in the view.
Hold the kaleidoscope to the light and the colors are so bright...........
Lower it away from the light source and the pieces are dark, and it's hard to make out the pattern.
Shake it and the pattern changes yet again.
The pieces in my kaleidoscope are elderly parents, my husband, my kids, my job, yadda-yadda. And they have been rotating and colliding with one another for a long time. The patterns weren't always pretty or pleasing, but dammit, they were all together. Just turn the thing or shake it up a bit and life goes on.
On February 26, 2012 I lost my mother and my own personal COLLIDE-a-scope went dark. One of my best and brightest pieces disappeared from my life.
I put the thing down, and checked out.
I'll spare you AND me the details. You don't want to read 'em, and I don't want to write 'em.
(I may do a post on how to pitch a funeral and piss off everyone you know---that's what happened---and maybe Momma forgives us for that viewing.......maybe not.)
I found out that even if I put the collide-a-scope down, the object cell still turns, the pieces still fall against one another, whether it's bright as the noon-day sun or black as pitch. With or without all of the pieces. And with or without me.
Time to shake it up, and see what pattern will fall next.
Posted by Slick at 8:36 AM