At one point I was in my house in NH and telling my neighbor about The Nature of Order. Then later on, I think the wider context was a sort of subterranean large school setting or something (a kind of setting that recurs) and I was sitting in a small, dark auditorium facing east that had a concert going on that was sort of like a funk demonstration concert, with Parliament on the stage and the explanatory interludes being MC’d from the audience by my aunt, who at one point was Dubya instead, and who was illuminated by a spotlight when he/she was talking. Dubya tried to say “syncopation” and it came out “syncopa….jation.” An audience member requested a song at the end and for some reason a bunch of NH and Williams friends and I had to go up on the stage (Parliament was no longer there… were they ever there at all??), which was now only dimly illumined by house lights, and we sang a song that started with the lyrics “I can’t feel the mountains/I can’t feel the sea” and beyond that very few people seemed to know the lyrics or even the melody so each person just improvised, trying to pretend to be singing the real song, all the while walking sort of interpretive-dancily around on the stage. Someone started a line of people holding hands and I joined up, and after a while I ran forward to cause an interesting shape in the line, and slid along the stage floor. Then I started propelling myself with my arms along the floor like a seal, and other people were finding the floor a good place to be, including one guy who passed by me wriggling like an earthworm as I was moving like a seal. The thought of the pensive walk-dance having gradually devolved into everyone locomoting like odd non-bipedal animals was just so silly that I laughed myself awake, which is why I remember this all so clearly.

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