Crossing Off X


All right, let’s just start with a megadose of honesty: X is going to be a stretch. Words that truly start with X are not ones that flow easily into conversation. Like xylophone. Or xenophobia. Or Xanadu. Hmm. Xanadu. Let’s go with that one.

Xanadu was not always a place with a roller-skating Olivia Newton John. It is a place of beauty, a place of perfection, like Shangri-La, Arcadia, or my favorite slightly problem-prone utopia, Eureka.

It seems ingrained in us, as sentient beings, to imagine a place where everything is beautiful, where all are needs are met without problem, where pettiness and cruelty don’t exist. Yes, I realize I kind of nudge Eureka out with that last part, but still, to each his or her own utopia.

But utopias are one of those things you can’t think too much about, because the moment you introduce the real human element, they seem to fall apart. There are wide swaths of science-fiction based on this quirk of human nature. We can have utopian environments. It’s the utopian people who seem to be the sticky part.

But still, it’s nice to dream of a place, gorgeous and untroubled. And we can keep them there, in that realm of things not quite real, our own private Xanadus.

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10 thoughts on “Crossing Off X

    • Yes, in my desperation for X, I didn’t consider Olivia Newton John’s holding power. Sorry.

      I’d say that perfection must be subjective, or in all these hundreds of thousands of years of human history, we would have stumbled across it. I think a lot of our conflict comes from very different ideas of perfection. What do you think?


  1. Yes. This. It’s like a virus! How? Where has it come from?? How long can I be expected to suffer???

    Xanadooo,…do-do-da-do-do-do… Xanadoo-w-oo. That’s it. On a loop. AARRRGGH!

    Perfection might be a moment of amnesia. I might forget that I’d read your ‘ear-worming’ post 🙂


    • Oh man, I was so focused on the concept of it, I never thought of the carnage I’d be inflicting. I’m very, very sorry. There will be no ear worms for the remainder of the challenge. Probably.


  2. In Xanadu did Kubla Khan
    A stately pleasure dome decree… my favourite poem, great X!
    I also have the Xanadu song infecting me…and the mad max movie playing in my head.
    I managed to download that book, thanks ever so much, haven’t had the time to read it yet due to the A to Z and bad internet, managed a quick look and it looks a fun read. I’m going to try to download this book now…Thanks. 🙂


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