Nature's Zodiac

Beyond the Wheel

The Tao of Pacman.

Metaphorcast May 8-14,

Listen here.

When Geo was two we got him a toy Dyson vacuum cleaner. He cleaned up the neighborhood, the apartment, the backyard and any public place that was halfway accepting of an impromptu VAPOOM! 2 years later, it has had a good run. With plenty of scrapes, dents, a missing wheel and a no longer working ‘motor’, it still gets picked up now and again. 

So many more toys have emerged in the magic of the moment with the promise of the stars and more only to recede back into the nondescript haze of playthings. Again and again, we find ourselves within the law of diminishing returns.

Because both Mars and Venus are in the lunar sign of Cancer right now, it’s a good time to tune more into the Moon, which happens, this week, to be waning. 

In her evening visits, Mother Moon will be increasingly less. She will be dwindling, diminishing, fading, subsiding, abating,tapering off, ebbing, winding down and petering out. 

Mother’s Day is this Sunday, the 14th, the same day that Mercury goes direct. What kinds of lessons can we learn from Mother, the original teacher, as she wanes this week?

Geo has a new obsession that is resisting the law of diminishing returns: pacman. At least twice a week we roll up to the laundromat to secure a bag of quarters before heading to the local movie theater to play for hours on the big pacman arcade machine. The sounds are wonderfully nostalgic to me. But even more satisfying is seeing Geo’s skill taking serious, often head-turning shape! At the age of four he easily gets to level three, something I only sometimes do, and he plays with ease, looking like a cool and collected pilot on duty. 

If we are not in the theater we are often playing real life pacman, in parks, the home, and playgroups. Daddy is especially good at this ritual that often closes down the night. Lots of ‘magic pellets’ and chomping and it goes without saying that the ghost monsters go by their real names: blinky, inky, pinky and clyde.

It is in this grip of an obsession that something is getting clearer to me. The law of diminishing returns is still happening, but it isn’t the novelty of the game that is waning, it is the anxiety of an unpredictable and sometimes dangerous world where bad guys may lurk. 

I noticed this when we were recently at a movie that had a scary part and saw that Geo barely flinched. Scary parts in movies have been a big deal so far for us, with lots of processing and sometimes even roleplaying (scary bear in a blanket cave!). IT seems that pacman is giving Geo a sense of control, that is literally increasing in tandem with an anxiety that is fading. 

Kierkegarrd called anxiety the dizziness of freedom. Anxiety lives in a broad and non distinct buzz of ‘what ifs’. But control lives in the moment, in the perfecting of a skill, in the confrontation of a specific ‘threat’, like Blinky coming in fast before you can reach the magic pellet. 

These flows of moments build personal histories that support a budding courage. 

Jupiter, the planet of wild enthusiasm, is completing its one-year run in Aries this week, the sign of courage before it secures itself in system-loving Taurus for the next year.

Take a page from wise waning Mommy Moon and get systematic about acquiring skills that help the non-productive buzz of worry dissipate. 

In the meantime, we have some chomping to do!

As always, happy nature pondering!


2 responses to “The Tao of Pacman.”

  1. love this…….you never know what helps us prepare the strategies for our lives…..yay Pac Man!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Mim! It’s so true- he is on now to ‘3D pacmam’ – who jumps the ghosts as well!


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My book is for anyone interested in the creative powers we share with nature!
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