Freudian Slips: Under a Microscope

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Location: Irony, New Jersey, United States

Life takes us many places. It's a box of chocolates and a Hansel and Gretal trail of candy wrappers. I have filmed as an actor in The Happening, Invincible, The Lovely Bones, The Bounty Hunter, The Greek American, Bazookas, Limitless, TV's Its Always Sunny in Philly, Outlaw, New York, The Warrior, The Nail, Game Change, Cold Case, & commercial work includes The Philadelphia Eagles, Septa, Coors, Turbo Tax & Carnival Cruises. Freudian Slips spotlights irony in short story format.

May 02, 2006

Under a Microscope

- Joe Tornatore, standing in the second row fourth from left.

God must have a damn good sense of humor. Nobody can make sense of irony because it just happens. Maybe God wants it that way. I have encouraged my readers to look for irony in their lives. Irony can function as measures of purpose and levity. On a personal perhaps mystic level, I believe that irony is God’s way of talking to me. Although irony has broad sweeping tentacles in my bizarre life, I needed a magnifying glass to uncover this irony.
While scrapbooking, I came across a 1974 group picture of Gloucester County Times newspaper paperboys. Like yesterday’s news, in studying the dated photo it takes me longer than it should to find myself, a former paperboy. Dressed in nothing but shorts and a short sleeve shirt, my sprouting body shone summery flesh. What first caught my attention was my flesh. I grab a magnifying glass to check out the integrity of my skin. I wanted to see what my skin looked like prior to developing the connect-the-dot blemish pattern of my rare skin disease, urticaria pigmentosa. Now magnified under glass, my eyes scan to find myself. The lens tracks to the center to settle on a familiar figure standing in the second row. I do a double take then violently pull away from the magnifying glass.
“That is impossible!” I utter in disbelief to nobody but myself.
I take a deep breath. A Curious George, I return to the lens. My eyes zoom in on the irony needing magnification. I am wearing a Ripley’s Believe It or Not imprint shirt! I stare at the time-stamped picture. Despite my present affiliation with Ripley’s Believe It or Not, I completely forgot that I once owned their tee shirt. As my poly/cotton blend recollections return, I realize that I am an unwitting billboard for the television show that I would appear on thirty years later and for the book that I would write about my disease. Call it a weak moment but this is too much irony for even the host of Freudian Slips. I need a witness to my viewpoint.
So I entice my son to look at the group picture. My son finds nothing unusual about the picture. He does not even recognize me in it. I point to a lad in the photograph then hand him the magnifying glass for closer inspection. He provides a carefree look but cannot see anything out of the ordinary. I impatiently grab the magnifying glass from him. Through a squint, I can now even make out the signature Ripley’s logo across the top of the shirt.
“Look at the Ripley’s Believe It or Not shirt.” I proclaim. “Doesn’t that beat all?”
This may have been the most ironic folly since the discovery of Fool’s Gold. At that exact moment in time, the landline phone rings.
My wife greets, “Hold on…” She passes me the phone.
With one hand pressing the magnifying glass to my eye, my other hand cradles the cordless telephone. I do not pay much attention to the caller at first. While my left eye marvels the ironic picture of myself wearing a Ripley’s Believe It or Not tee shirt, my right ear catches the purpose of the phone call, a rare book order for my book Stop and Smell the Silk Roses.
“…You want to what?” I asked into the phone.
Everything came into focus. Albeit an eerie coincidence, the timely phone call connected my past to the present. Life is like a trail of tiny bread crumbs that can only be seen under a microscope. Just ask my magnifying glass.



Blogger Dr. Nazli said...

Joe, i was thinking of something witty to write - but actually just felt like smiling - really lovely blog entry, really lovely family!

10:32 PM  
Blogger Dr. Nazli said...

Hey Joe - was reading through your earlier entries - I cannot believe you are surprised at my "V for Vendetta" recommendation! It epitomizes me - it makes jump for joy when I find myself staggered by the state of world affairs!

N for Nazli!

10:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Which was more of a surprise? The Tee shirt or the book order?

10:46 PM  
Blogger Joe Tornatore said...

okay. okay. I'll see the movie and get back to you. kind of under a deadline to finish The Da Vinci Code book before the movie comes out.

I'm going with book order. lol

12:13 AM  
Anonymous et said...

Good story with a "Twilight Zone" ironic twist at the end.

7:24 AM  
Anonymous T said...


Good eye on the t-shirt! Ok, I'm going Columbo on ya. When you first got stung, I went on the internet, via Em, and looked for books regarding bee stings and apitherapy texts. The product code for the book I was taking a look at was P12.(Check the Bottom row)Also, the stairs are obviously made from Pacific Northwestern Pine.(The natural habitat for wasps and bees) In addition, the kid directly above you appears to be pointing at you with his index finger, while donning a shirt with the Grim Reaper skull decal.Just one more thing , sir. In the top right window of the house in the back ground,there is a woman with her hair in the 'Bee Hive" style; which was popular at that time..............................................Anyway, Keep up the Good, bro.
Oh, the product code thing is true.

7:16 PM  
Blogger Joe Tornatore said...

Twilight at daylight.

Reminds me of some sound investigative reporting on the faces in the orbs.

8:06 PM  
Blogger Maja said...

Haha, I love your spooky life!

7:54 PM  
Blogger Joe Tornatore said...

It's a circus.

7:57 PM  
Blogger the Contrary Goddess said...

too funny Joe.

11:28 PM  

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