"Unless you look carefully at each leaf, it is easy to overlook these katydids that are right before your eyes. Overlook them is exactly what katydids need predators to do."*

Sitting in the kitchen, I thought that I could hear a chorus of katydids outside the window. I realize that this isn’t the case: it’s the wrong season for one thing and katydids just aren’t an LA insect for another. But the mere suggestion of the sound is enough to lull me into nostalgia for summertime back in Chicago.

Why that sound, I wonder. And why now? Was it already subconsciously on my mind and I was just looking for an excuse to ‘hear’ it? Or was it something that I was hearing that I couldn’t identify so my mind reached for the nearest equivalent sound and it just happened to be katydids?

I started to read the screenplay for “The Big Short” today and the quote at the very beginning is something to the effect that you can’t teach a person something that they are sure they already know. That was more than a little bit paraphrased. But the idea that I might be overlooking things because I already think that I know what they are stuck in my mind. On my drive home I found myself wondering “what am I not seeing?” which is a difficult question to answer because by definition it is something I’m not aware of.

What obvious things do I not see? And am I not seeing them because I’m not paying attention or because I don’t want to see them? Do I need to go looking for them or are they right in front of me?

I suppose that the biggest question is: if I see them, will I be able to do anything with the knowledge? Like, in “The Big Short” they figure out that the housing market is going to fail so they are able to short it. If I had figured that out I wouldn’t have known the first thing to do about it except to maybe avoid buying a house.

Which opens up another question: can I only make discoveries in areas that I already have expertise in? After all, I could have looked at all the financial information in the world and still not known that the housing bubble would burst. I have enough trouble looking over my annual spreadsheet and knowing whether I overspent for the year. But if it were film related I might be in a position to see a pattern and act on it. And I ought to start looking now because my chances of gainful employment might depend on it.

Anyway, that was a bit of a ramble, but that’s kinda how it goes sometimes.

* Serendipitously, when I went looking for a picture of a katydid for the post I found another blog all about how easy they are to overlook because of their camouflage… So I guess they are more relevant to my thought process than I knew!

~ by Gwydhar Gebien on March 10, 2016.

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