Confessions of a Mindless Repeater
Berkel and Me
Conversations with a psycho-neurotic cat
By Jon Frangipane
Berkel jumped up on the kitchen counter to have our daily morning discussion, as I brewed some coffee.
“Do you know you are what Doctor Phil calls a ‘Mindless Repeater?’ said Berkel. “And not only that, but Doctor Phil says that people like you are taking up precious space on our planet which gets smaller each day!”
Little did I know I was taking up precious space on a small planet until my cat brought it to my attention. “I don’t even know Doctor Phil, and how would he know, anyway, Berkel?
“For instance,” explained Berkel, “without realizing it, you sometimes repeat a question someone has just asked you. Remember yesterday when the mailman said, “Get around to paying your taxes yet? And you responded with, “Get around to paying my taxes yet? That’s what Doctor Phil calls a Mindless Repeater who takes up precious space on a small planet getting smaller every day.”
I don’t know about other people, but for me it takes an enormous amount of strength and humility to admit my mistakes. And I rarely trust anything Berkel, says. But yesterday it suddenly occurred to me he may be right — I may be taking up precious space on a small planet.
“Another example,” said Berkel, “was when your lady friend, Felicia, said, ‘We’ve been dating on and off for the last 29 years, so don’t you think it’s time we got married?’ and you answered with, ‘We’ve been dating on and off for 29 years and don’t I think we should get married?’ “You see, you are a certified Mindless Repeater.”
Berkel was right, and I don’t usually surrender easily, but I often do repeat what people say, and asked my analyst about it. I’ve been going to my homeopathic Doctor Forthright for 29 years, actually since the day after I met my Felicia. The good doctor agreed with Berkel’s analogy and said that most of his patients are taking up precious space on a small planet. He also said that even he was taking up precious space on our small planet.
Apparently, Doctor Forthright is a great believer in natural root therapy, along with his regular homeopathic approach. Berkel, who claims to have researched root therapy on the Discovery Channel, made his feelings clear.
“Root therapy is obviously a sham!” he yaks when the subject comes up. “You, my dear man, have taken every single natural root known to man and 29 years later you have acquired more itches, bumps, rashes, aches and pains than any ten people I know. You’re turning into one big red festering blotch!”
“I’m turning into one big red festering blotch?… Oh darn, I did it again!”
“What’s even more exasperating,” explained Berkel, “is that science tells us the words that come out of our mouth travel through space and time, indefinitely… for eternity.”
“So, you see, even the words of Pontius Pilate are still traveling through time and space after he had some harsh words regarding the Samaritan uprising, just after the death of Tiberius way back in 37 A.D.”
“And then there was that Mitt Romney speech when…”
“You’re getting the idea now,” said Berkel. “so remember, it’s not only Big Brother who may be electronically listening to your every word, it also may be our supreme creator collecting every single word we speak.”
“How absolutely incredible that information is! I must admire how far you’ve come in your education, Berkel. What’s your secret?”
“I google a lot!”
“And how do you think I can improve my life?”
“Keep your mouth shut!”
Copyright © 2009 Jon Frangipane Revised 2015
Jon Frangipane is a pianist and composer and former editor/publisher of the Lighthouse Point Magazine. He also co-facilitated the Fort Lauderdale Writers’ Group with writer/publisher Krista Martinelli. Also he owns a tennis racket.