On January 31, the East Bethel EconoLodge hosted the fourth- annual meeting of the Aimless Coalition. The organization had enjoyed a successful membership drive, in large measure due to embracing the formerly goal-oriented.
This was certain to create a schism in the ranks, since the arch-aimless (a faction that fought vigorously against room assignments) had long opposed including the “job and long pants” crowd.
In recent months, I had become politically active in the group, and was considered the new voice of the emerging center. Wary of aimless extremism, I supported selective use of alarm clocks, but fought against the “Gohr-Martin Cancellation Act,” which would have given members the right to blow off any appointment and ban the use of all coherent reasoning.
I arrived at the EconoLodge four hours late, well before many, but long after those who’d remained since last year’s meeting. The reservations clerk greeted me as I approached the front desk: “Good afternoon, madam. Are you here with the Aimless Coalition, or are you just curious how we bolt our TVs to the Earth’s core?”
I told the gentleman that I was indeed a member of the coalition, and asked if that entitled me to a discount. He asked if I was a member of its travel club, the first such club to offer trip-routing for one’s mind. I was not, having been dubious of the club’s value, and having favored its abolishment (in keeping with my long-standing libertarian views on roadside assistance).
After determining that I’d have to pay the full “single occupancy, multiple deficiency” rate, he handed me the key to Room Number 2—usually reserved for visiting dignitaries—and gave me a map to my room. As always, this consisted of a semicircular arrow and the directive “around back.”
On the way out of the lobby, I read the “Schedule of Events” for the coalition meeting:
1 PM—Speaker: Dr. Jonathan Hefler
Topic: “Borrowing Money From Your Inner Child”
2 PM—Abrasive Remarks to Passersby
3 PM—Motivational Speaker: Gus Gill
Topic: “Git Goin’!!!”
Topic: “When Did You Duck Out of Previous Speech?”
5 PM – Discussion
Topic: “When Did You Duck Out of Mainstream America?”
Topic “Thoughts on Corn”
7 PM—“Aces Hollywood”
8 PM—Official Send-off to Those Departing for the Twin Cities
9 PM—Closing Remarks and Official Welcome to Those Returning from the Twin Cities
I meandered to my room, and was immediately greeted by several fellow members, all of whom I hadn’t seen or heard from in the past year. This, of course, meant we were all doing something right.
The first order of business was the traditional hazing of new members. We’d received some bad press for what many perceived to be our barbaric rituals. But this was an act of bonding—something that would forever link us, especially during those moments of weakness when one ponders society at large, and tinkers with the idea of participation.
The hazing consisted of having new members go out to the street; lie on the double yellow line; and, whenever a car passed, seethingly mutter a comment, mired in eternal mootness, as to why they’d never buy that particular vehicle.
After a successful day of inducting new members, and retiring the pager number of a delusional day worker, we all agreed to meet again next year…around back.
Oh, yes indeed, yet another aimless weekend to be proud of. I thrive with aimless. In fact, and consider the source here, I actually managed to create a college semester composed entirely of “independent study.” Aimless is a gift.
Bye for now.