By S. Derrickson Moore
LAS CRUCES — I’ve been reflecting on new starts, philosophical dilemmas and the great mysteries of the universe.
Here are some things to ponder in your spare time.
• Early one recent morning, a small boy and his mom were heading to the bus stop as I was leaving for work. I heard her laughing.
“He just asked me, ‘What’s the biggest number before infinity?’” she explained.
It’s something I’d never considered, but when I Googled the question, there were 4,070,000 hits.
Several sources suggested it was an apples and oranges kind of thing and there is no correct answer because a number is a number and infinity is a concept.
We pondered the question in the newsroom and the most satisfying answer, I thought, came from Richard Coltharp, father of a bright and inquisitive small child himself.
The next time I spotted them at the neighborhood bus stop, I shouted Richard’s answer to the mom and son: “Infinity, minus one!”
• The team at SPI (Southwest Paranormal Investigations) let us know they’re getting ready to check out possible paranormal activity at two vintage downtown buildings that once housed the old Amador Hotel and an old hospital.
The Land of Enchantment has always been a spirit-filled place, and in recent years, there has been a boom in ghost hunters, ghost busters and paranormal investigators determined to mix it up with other realms.
I’ve listened to a lot of testimonials about spooks that lurk in all kinds of places, from an elegant dining room at The Double Eagle and crumbling enclaves in remote villages to hotels and Big Ditch Park in Silver City.
At some point, as earnest seekers searched for images on grainy film, or a possible message in an amplified audio loop, it occurred to me that the creatures they were attempting to contact were sometimes the kinds of souls (living or dead) one would do one’s best to escape swiftly, were they to materialize and start blathering at the average cocktail party.
With the exception of possible angelic or other divine communications, I confess that I’m basically of the “go toward the light” school, when it comes to communicating with lost souls and wayward spirits.
I think we can sum up our best advice in three little words: “Get an afterlife!”
• Facebook aspires to create greater communication and foster intimacy with our loved ones near and far.
But sometimes, the limits of cyberspace are emphasized in laugh-out-loud ways.
Consider this formulaic query, for instance: “Sally Swartz recently became friends with Tom Derrickson and thinks you may know Tom, too.”
I do. In fact we were very close for many decades before Facebook was invented. Sally’s my sister and Tom is our brother.
• We have American Indian lineage in the family tree and American Indian amigos and philosophers with whom we ponder such questions as “Why are we here?” and “Where are we going?” “Where did we come from?”
Some of the New Agers in the tribe hold with Edgar Cayce’s reading that ancient Atlantis was the source of America’s Pre-Columbian population. Others go with the Asian land bridge migration theory.
“If that one’s true, some of our relatives are finally getting some of their own back from those jerks who traded Manhattan for a few beads. Now America is pretty heavily in debt for all those trinkets Asia has been sending us,” an astute family philosopher postulates.
S. Derrickson Moore can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org