If you gaze long into an abyss…

…the abyss will gaze back into you.

Nietzsche said that. I’m not sure what he was talking about except that it probably had to do with having an existential crisis, because that’s pretty much all he talked about. Or maybe he was suggesting that abysses have a consciousness? Makes one wonder what he thought about trees falling in forests when no one is there to hear them.

Meanwhile, this quote has absolutely nothing to do with Braco except for the fact that it was the only quote I could think of that had anything to do with gazing.

So when I left you yesterday, you were enjoying the Thank You Braco video and hopefully not listening too closely to the lyrics of that song. Whenever someone really butchers something official in English – especially a “rock star” – don’t you find yourself wondering if they didn’t have ONE American acquaintance who could have weighed in on the proper use of our language? How about a Brit or a Kiwi? Surely there’s a friendly Canadian or South African who would have helped simply because they could. The mind boggles…

But I digress. We watched the movie and our MC – and again, fortune has smiled on you as I found an actual photo of her. If you thought I was exaggerating about amphetamines raised to the power of cocaine, then you just don’t know how serious I take my guru journalism efforts – was shortly back on stage all giant grins and juiced up enthusiasm.

I'm no doctor, but I'm pretty sure there's a prescription that could help with that.

 

So anyway, the deliriously happy lady on the left side of the screen here suddenly became as grave as she could muster, told us the big moment had finally come, and Braco was ushered into the room.

I have to admit I missed this part.

Something about the photo montage and the ridiculous song had spiraled me straight into what can best be described as a mild state of hysteria. Or maybe enthusiasm IS contagious and I was simply under the influence of whatever is wrong with this lady? At any rate, in an effort to calm myself, I averted my gaze and thought about pizza.

My fearless companion, however, kept his eyes on the prize and later informed me that a horde of ushers flanked Braco and led him up to the front of the room. A few seconds later, I opened my eyes and saw Braco – in all his long flowing hair and skin tight jeans glory -standing on top of the table there in front of us…and died laughing.

It wasn’t just laughter, either. It was one of those explosive snorts that then dissolves into hysterical laughter. It was bad.

 

I know, I know. That was terrible of me. I felt really awful. I did! I tried to cover for it by crouching down and pretending to be seized by a coughing fit, and I think that worked because I wasn’t asked to leave.

Braco

No comment.

It wasn’t that it was soooo hilarious to find him standing on the table, it was just that I hadn’t seen how he’d actually gotten up there, and my mind filled in with an image of him hauling himself up rather gracelessly. I kind of imagined him clambering all arms and knees and then maybe struggling a bit to right himself. And then I noticed the aforementioned super tight gray jeans and wondered how they’d fared in the rear end seam region and it was all just too much.

It turns out he had a staircase, but I didn’t know that part until it was all over.

Anyway, after a hard self-talking to, I got it together and got down to some gazing.

Now let me preface by saying that about 30  minutes prior to this exact moment, I had stopped in a McDonalds and ordered a large iced coffee. Turns out a large iced coffee at McDonalds comes in a gallon bucket. And there was a significant dose of super sweet syrup in it, too. Now I have a small (8oz or less) cup of coffee once in a while, but not enough to fill a child’s wading pool. And I almost never eat sugar. So put it together and I’m not sure if what happened next might just be explained by the 16,000 milligrams of caffeine and cup of corn syrup now coursing through my veins, or whether Braco is a verified spiritual phenomenon, but I’m sure you’re wishing I’d just stop talking and tell you what I saw, so here goes nothing:

I stared at him for a while and I started to feel a little woozy. He was wearing a white shirt and they had to spotlights shining on him from below and between the bright light, the white shirt, and the white screen behind him, well, everything else kind of faded out of my vision. It was kind of like he was floating there disembodied. I wondered – briefly – if maybe he really was some kind of otherworldly being.

Braco gazing

He's a bit (a lot) less spectre-like in person.

This photo – thank you Internets! – captures the scene well.

So anyway, my head was swimming a bit and I was trying to be serious and stay open and eventually my turn came and he gazed at me for 45 excruciatingly long seconds  (I thought they said more than 30 seconds was dangerous?) and I smiled a little because I felt self-conscious, but he did not smile back, which in turn made me even more self-conscious. He made his rounds with his little staring contest – it’s safe to say he was victor over us all – and then he stepped down off the table and that was that.

Well, that wasn’t that. There was some arm twisting by Lady Enthusiasm and a few people shared their experience and this one woman who’d been following him for weeks had this awesome thing to say about how ou shouldn’t go to work or be with your families because being there following Braco around the globe was MUCH more important (I’m pretty sure she attends all the gazing sessions held each day. I wonder if they offer a package deal for that?)  and then it was over and I left was wondering if something had actually “happened” or if I’d just had too much coffee and whether or not I would need two bathroom stops or three on the ride back.

As for whether Braco is the real deal or not, well, I don’t know. I’ll probably never know.

I got a terrible flu a week later and it hung around for a month, but I’m all better now. I’m not sure whether to blame him or thank him for that one. The rest of my life is usually pretty good and that’s the case right now. Braco or good karma or dumb luck? Beats me.

Nonetheless, my Braco experience convinced me of one thing: as much as I would love – kill for. Consider that a threat – a regular thematic thrust to this blog so that I had something comical to say on a consistent basis, going and seeing these guru types ain’t it. Remind me to tell you about the lizard people and you’ll have no choice but to agree that I am making a sound and sane choice. Mocking people is fun, but not when it takes up your whole day.

 

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