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cairnal knawledge

Rock Arrangments

Stacking rock is the latest here at Self-Isolation Central. Building a rock wall is an open-ended three-dimensional chess match. Out in the arena, also known as the front yard, there in the field of dreams the player towers like the Grand Canyon over the rocks.

Procrastination might not even be a word if we were not suddenly having self-isolation thrust into our lives. Still with a snazzy past life now at full stop, and having all the time in the world to idle away arranging and rearranging rocks the reverse of whatever a blessing might be gets to the essence of what the rock stacking sport is all about.

Baby Rocks

Having admired more than a few gifted, more patient rock stackers I approached the challenge with humility. A rookie rock stacker has to earn their stripes.

Here’s the first thing to know. A good course of stacked rocks starts at rock bottom. Got that? You want a foundation that the higher rocks can count on. After a few stacking sessions you knew the moment would hit you like a ton of bricks. Once all those ideal rocks, all those born to be stackable rocks have been used up what a rock stacker is left with is all those other rocks, the unpopular rocks, the rocks nobody wants, you’ve seen those rocks before, they’re all scattered across the rocky road of life.

In the Sierra foothills as you approach the gold country’s Sutter Creek from the west Chinese immigrants worked stacking rocks. To appreciate the enormity of the Chinese wall stackers talent all you need do is pick up and carry one fair sized rock from one side of your yard to the other side of your yard and set the rock down. To appreciate Chinese rock stackers continue this rock moving exercise sunrise to sunset, day in and day out, for a decade.

Amateur Rock Stacker’s Lament

Meditation may not induce the level of serenity a rock stacking consciousness requires. You’ll need to self- appoint yourself your own chain gang guard. Eat boiled eggs, smirk, and recite this line over and over, “What we have here is a failure to communicate.” A stacking mood is rare.

The contemplative life I have come to learn consists of both concepts in the abstract and objects in the concrete. In both the abstract and the concrete things get heavy quick. Toss a potent mushroom into the mix and you’ll regret having ever thought what you wanted to do was stack a wall of rocks straight and plumb. A straight line as all of you know was discovered by the earliest rock lovers, the Sumerians.  

Tribal Rock Indentation Discovery

Still with the vaccine so far off in the future and rocks and time being what they are I’ll probably not only stack the remaining rocks into a wall but I can see that I’ll also be getting involved in deconstructing rock walls and launch my career as a rock wall rearranger.

Think of rock stacking as a leisure activity, the ultimate stealth thinking man’s game. Since this pandemic has hit so too has arrived at our location the penetrating inviolable truth. Take each day one rock at a time.