I reckon a ridiculously high percentage of people who have seen ‘Close Encounters of the Third Kind’ will be able to identify and even ‘sing’ the famous “5 Note Theme” which the aliens use to first communicate with us. If you know of the film, you would agree this is probably the most memorable scene in the movie.
I’m also pretty confident that of this high percentage of people, not many can recall “Devil’s Tower, Wyoming’ as the name of the place the aliens were communicating through these 5 notes.
Whilst I fall into both categories above, I’m one of an even lower percentage of people whose next, most memorable scene is where Richard Dreyfuss’ character shapes “Devil’s Tower” from his mash potatoes. Sparing you any scientific or psychological reasons, I’m merely attributing it to the fact it was ‘cool’ to see as a 9 year old.
Back In 1984, Google’s equivalent in the Boccabella household was a set of encyclopedias proudly published by Funk & Wagnalls. Being the youngest of the 4 siblings, and often ‘too young to join in’, much of my childhood joy came from reading. Nerd Alert! Nerd Alert!
On occassion, I’d grab one of the 27 volumes (with their debossed gold-foil text on their spines) and flick through the pages – and that is when I came across a picture of a pyramid.
At the time, most things resembled the shape of either a cube, sphere, or cylnder. But this pyramid I had discovered and continued to admire in all it’s black and white, pixelated glory, was so unique in comparison to everything else around me… and i guess, that made it also ‘cool’.
Whilst the obsession never came close to inciting the hacking into my food as detailed above, I did begin stacking (and re-stacking) items to reflect the triangular form of the pyramid. The widest object took it’s place at the bottom of the pile and each piece thereafter became incrementally thinner than the one before it.
As it turns out (get your highlighters ready for the following) it is also an incredibly simple, sometimes fun, and definitely an eye-pleasing method of tidying or styling a group of objects in your home. Similarly, this method is great for optimising space when storing things in a pantry or a cupboard. (And you know you most likely already do this with your plates.)
I’d like to add that no matter how cool the 9 year old version of me thought a pyramid was, and no matter how mind-blowing the adult version of me thinks of the question ‘How did they get that LAST stone on the top?”, the consensus of much of the entire world is that pyramids are amazing.
You will understand then why it irks me, that for all the awe they inspire, for all that is known and unknown about them, they are merely named as they are shaped.