Wellness Productivity

While following the scent of some sparkly stones, I have become trapped by wall-high posters, shiny DVD cases; cursive, serif and sans-serif types string me to an unseen ball and chain, dangling my prospects afore a row of bared lips, which strain to contain the overflowing bleached whites within. One by one the infinite smiles approach me. A clean bugle call precedes each hovering mouth, ‘Please give a [Most Well And Distinguished Welcome] to our [Honorable And High Distinguished Knowledger] on the [Affairs Of Life Of Humans And Similar],’ joined in chorus by ethereal recommendations stemming from unlocatable institutes and growth centres.

‘If only I had heard from [] earlier, I may have never have had any issues with my organic coffee cupholder.’

‘[] lays bare the secrets of the universe and more, and strips back the veil from nature and beyond, and denudes the mist from everything itself and etc.’

‘I have bought multiple copies of []’s [], in order to digest the insights not only aurally and visually, but nasally too. Listen, read and snort yourself to enlightenment. Bless you.’

The oncoming grin is accompanied by some other feature: a loose-fitting shirt, a size-too-small skirt, a tie with both stripes and dots on of course to indicate personality. Floating above sit the two same, dead eyes, boring into my self-worth, mining me for nuggets to melt and fashion into a bangle, a nose piercing, a monogrammed button, to adorn my latest life guide.

‘Good Life, Dear Listener/Reader/Other Consumption Methoder. I am Professor/Most Distinguished/Reviled By None/Envy Of The Mongeese Smithy/Dharma/Valhallalala, Student/Learner of the Path/Road/Seaway to The End/Wisdom/Valhallalala. I bring you gifts of Gold Standard Lessons in Self/Unself/All-selves/Only-elves Respect and myrrh. I will Teach How to Approach Your Journey, and Baby, You have just Started.’ A gush of canned uplift muzak plays, and the learnings commence. Different smiles espouse different aphorisms.

‘Give me a Buddha, and I will give you a quote.’

‘The way to Live Laugh Love, is to Shift Shaft Shove.’

‘I am the walrus, goo-goo g’joob, g’goo goo g’joob, goo goo g’joob [copyright, the Beatles].’

But every philosophy comes coated with the same layers upon layers of justification. Not only do ceaseless recommendations riddle the poster/book/DVD/other medium at hand, but validation from history/tradition/science/religion (but only The Bible, Greek mythology and Buddhism, maybe a sprinkling of Tao, and a quote from Gandhi of course) is also hauled out, to tenuously brace the argument that there are 109 Methods to Betterment Wellness Productivity.

I splutter. The fumes of mouthwash emanating from the parade of incisors brews with smothering incense and the hanging musk of a spiritual gathering in my nostrils; my body shuts. ‘Help!’ I shout. ‘Help me!’ More and more mouths spout advice, more and more quirkily patterned cravats press forward to prescribe me their experiences. Self-help books eagerly flap and wink their pages at me, podcasters and influencers cast their lashes towards me. ‘Help me. Help,’ I whimper. A friend answers. ‘What’s up buddy? Talk to me.’ And I do.