Whenever one is told (usually by someone in a fit of comic hysterics) that “It’s easy!” one has to question the unvarnished purpose in sharing the intelligence with oneself (usually recovering from the embarrassment of a petty defeat like opening a can). Indeed there is a case to be made for the proposition “It’s easy!” though I would be more approving if there were added the subjunctive clause, “… if you know what you’re doing”. Be honest, whenever that happens, that we can’t figure out the simplest thing, our immediate reaction is unease. Yet equally certain – but far more mortifying – is our discovery thanks to the input of the comedian that indeed it is perfectly stupid! In the end it is easy!
The preamble to this monologue is the unlikely resource of my dental practitioner. I was today there to have my teeth cleaned. During the brief moments when one can chat with one’s hygienist I learned that her 10-year old son on occasion wears a bow tie. My instant (and succinct) enquiry was whether the bow tie were real or already bowed. She said the latter. I was not defeated in my ambition. I asked, “Do you know how to tie a bow tie?” When her predictable answer followed, I exclaimed, “It’s easy!” And in truth it is easy – as easy as tying one’s shoe laces. The curiosity about the information is that for most the knowledge is obscure. It is partly for this reason (the hilarity of the ignorance) that the answer is indeed as simple as tying one’s shoe laces.
When later this afternoon I returned to my dental practitioner’s office with a bow tie for my hygienist’s son, I (again, quickly) insisted upon demonstrating my thesis. Using the hygienist’s arm as something about which to tie a bow, I withdrew the bow from its little plastic pouch and proceeded in an instant to tie about her arm a bow! I did it slowly enough to emphasize the perfect truth “It’s easy!” and its compatibility with shoe laces.