I’m a cloud watcher. I can only sunbathe for so long before I feel like I will spontaneously combust (thank you blood pressure medication) so I move my overheated body under the canopy of my deck umbrella and watch the clouds go by. They never cease to amaze me. Whether it is the pattern in their wisps or the shapes I see in their billowy contours, I can cloud gaze for hours.
I have not been able to watch the clouds lately, however, because the sky has been a solid, monochromatic grey. Perhaps because I am so accustomed to looking beyond what I really see, recently I have been seeing faces in the strangest locations.
This morning I rolled over, still shaking off the remnants of my slumber, and faced my closet. A shirt that was at the top of the laundry basket was piled in such a way that the aged face of a man stared back at me from the shirt’s folded elbow. For some reason, I couldn’t avert his keen focus on me and I stared back with the same intensity.
He seemed familiar to me. And this is not the first time I have discovered a genial visage in a random place. It happens more frequently than I should probably admit.
I have since discovered that this phenomenon has a name – Pareidolia. There are many people, like me, who have the ability to see faces or animals in a benign object. An extreme example is the woman who sold a 10-year old grilled cheese on eBay for $28,000.00 because it supposedly had the image of the Virgin Mary on it. Some people see a cinnamon bun below, others see Mother Teresa.
Whatever the reasoning behind this strangely named anomaly, the writer in me enjoys the visits from these odd characters. I’m sure one day they will insert themselves into a story line somewhere along my writing journey and I will be grateful for their intrusion into my reality.
Time for audience participation – cinnamon bun or Mother Teresa?