Commodius Harmony

[Editor’s note: Commodious Harmony is an excerpt from the novel Walking Blind to the Ties That Bind.] 

“Did you ever hear how 19th century scientists discovered Neptune?” Marek asked Corey within the first hour of first day of Corey’s on-the-job training in an automotive garage. That line right there told Corey that everything a trainer named Thom told him about Marek was right on the mark when he said.

“He’ll talk your ear off,” Thom said as they walked to Marek’s station, “We just hope some of it has something to do with auto mechanics,” he said laughing at his own joke, a joke Corey didn’t understand. “We call him the brain,” Thom added, “as in Pinky and the Brain. He’s a smart guy. We just hope he tells you some things about auto mechanics,” he said laughing again at the same joke.  

Who else, but a nonstop talker opens a conversation about the discovery of Neptune Corey thought. Corey welcomed the conversation about Neptune, however, because he was nervous about his first day on the job. He was so nervous that he chewed off all his nails on the drive over to the garage. That frustrated him, because he worked so hard to fight that lifelong compulsion, and he did it. He didn’t bit his nails for months, and in one fifteen minute drive, they were gone.  Unbeknownst to Marek, his off-topic conversation served to settle Corey Dugan’s nerves.

Antony Marek didn’t greet Corey with this off-topic conversation, there were introductory words shared and an introductory conversation when they met. Marek offered some preliminary advice and ways Corey could get along with others in the garage and him in the beginning. Once they were under their first car, followed by a pregnant silence, Marek launched into his off topic story.

“The discovery of Neptune is fricking fascinating to a layman like me,” Marek continued, “and I am a layman in every sense of the word.”

“You do realize,” Corey said. He was laughing at Marek, thinking back on what Thom said about Marek. “That what when you talk about Neptune and being a layman and all, you’re basically feeding into the nickname The Brain.” They shared a glance, “Thom said that’s your nickname.”

“It is. I know. I’ve heard it,” Marek said rolling his eyes at his own foolishness. “I’ve been laying under cars like this a long time Corey. I could do this in my sleep. What I’m basically saying is, basically, the mind wanders. My mind drifts to topics like these. I basically think about things like this all the time, and I basically, kind of like talking about them. I would probably go crazy if I didn’t. If you have any questions about what I’m doing, stop me, and I’ll answer any and all questions you might have. Fair enough?”

“Fine by me,” Corey said. “Sounds interesting.”

“Oh it, is,” Marek said, “It really is. Neptune, or the discovery of it, plays out like this. A bunch of dudes sat around a bunch of wood walls with dirt floors, using what we now consider archaic tools and instruments trying to discover the mysteries of the universe through what we call celestial mechanics. Do you know what celestial mechanics are?”

“Kind of,” Corey said. “I mean, I get the general idea, yeah, but I don’t know the particulars of it.”

“Fair enough,” Marek said. “I had no idea. Never heard the term before I started this book. And it wasn’t a book on Neptune, or the discovery of it, or celestial mechanics. It was what they call an offshoot. I didn’t care about celestial mechanics, or anything of the sort, and when the author started in on this offshoot I wanted him to get back to the topic, in the beginning. What are you talking about? I asked the author aloud. About three paragraphs into this offshoot, I’m hooked. I’m thinking this guy is really onto something, and I don’t want him to get back to the central topic. So, I started doing my own research into this, and what I’m about to tell you is a hybrid of what he wrote, and my personal research into the matter. I can’t remember where this man’s theory ends and my personal research and my own theories begin.”

“I love offshoots,” Corey said, “as you call them.”

“Totally,” Marek said with his voice strained by his attempts to torque the nut before him.

 “Anyway, so I didn’t know about celestial mechanics, and I didn’t care,” Marek continued, “and I didn’t see how they applied to the author’s theme, until he talked about how these scientists used celestial mechanics to develop a mathematical theory to predict that there had to be a planet between Saturn and Uranus based on Isaac Newton’s theories on gravity and Uranus’ unusual activities. They did this before anyone saw the planet in the nighttime sky. Let that sink in for a minute, before I continue, they predicted the existence of a planet before they saw it by using the simple and complex mathematical tools available to all of us. Is that the stuff or what?”

“It’s the stuff,” Corey said.

“After they discovered Uranus, and it completed its first full orbit, these scientists began to think that there had to be another planet providing what they called a perturbing gravitational influence on Uranus. That brilliant conclusion led me to think about human nature,” Marek said. “Before I get into this fascinating offshoot, and it’s mine not theirs, I want you to appreciate what these guys did. To gain full appreciation, we have to mentally time warp back to the heart of the 19th century. Their technology may not have been as archaic as we imagine, but the first guy to predict the existence of Neptune probably road a horse to work on a dirt road, and his definition of the heart of the city was a bunch of wooden store fronts, like we see in the show Deadwood.

“We have Hubble telescopes now, nuclear-powered space exploration vehicles, and high tech labs that can scan the methane lakes on Saturn’s moon Titan. They had telescopes and various other tools, but the tools they used more than any other were their brains and their eyes. Most of what these 19th century scientists saw in the nighttime sky is what we can see by stepping outside and looking up into the nighttime sky. Therefore, they had to base their predictions and findings on other people’s theories, and the idea that the entire universe existed on universally accepted mathematical principles. They probably sat around candles and campfires talking about how the irregularities of Uranus’ orbit made no sense, based on their limited understandings of the universe.

“Here,” Antony Marek said to interrupt himself, “why don’t you take over and I’ll coach you through it,” he said handing Corey the tool.

“One of these scientists probably laid in a bathtub one day with a pencil or a quill pen, mentally sorting through the various mathematical predictions others made, and the subsequent theories based on them. One of them said that the irregularities in Uranus’ orbit required further explanation. One of them said that there was no way that Uranus could orbit the way it does, based solely on its gravitational relationships to Saturn, Jupiter, and the Sun.

“Now, we all know now that there are nine planets, or eight planets and, what, four or five dwarf planets, but before you dismiss that as a thought we now consider obvious knowledge, we have to time travel back and think about what we know now versus what they knew then.”

Marek told Corey he wasn’t doing anything wrong, in his procedures, but Marek taught him an easier way to do it, then he showed him.

“Ok, where was I?” he asked himself, “Oh yeah, think about all the thinking that had to be involved. Just thinking and drinking whatever gawd awful liquor they drank, and smoking whatever they smoked, drinking, and thinking. I’m guessing this wasn’t just their job. I’m guessing they ate the ideas of celestial mechanics and how they applied to mathematical principles and Newton’s theories on gravity in their tuna sandwiches, they sat on the can with it, and they thought about it while playing with their kids. I’m guessing one guy just jumped off the can saying, ‘There has to be another planet there,’ and that man predicted, based solely on the irregular actions of Uranus, that there had to be a perturbing force causing Uranus to orbit in such an irregular pattern. Then this person took what should be the unusual path of Uranus, adjusted it according to what he believed the perturbing influence was, and said that another planet had to be right there. Those in charge of validating a man’s scientific evaluations declared that he was off, a little off. They probably thought they were the stuff for declaring him a little off, but this guy, I can’t remember the guy’s me it was some long, 19th century, French frog name. Whatever his name was,” Marek said after a second search, “he was off by one degree. I don’t know if they mocked this guy, but they should’ve said his stuff didn’t stink for being off by one degree. They named that planet that was billions of miles away, but one degree different from what the frog dude claimed, Neptune.”

Marek corrected another one of Corey’s habits, in fixing the brake pads of the car they were under, saying, “Again, you’re not wrong. It’s just that there’s an easier way, a less time consuming way of aligning the brake pads. That’s the way we do it around here. Fair enough?”

“Sounds good,” Corey said. “Thanks.”

“Who gives a crap right?” Marek asked. “About the discovery of Neptune I mean. I mean it’s a hell of a story, but in the end, it doesn’t have an effect on your life right? The point, for me, is that the entire universe, the Earth and little Corey, and all his … what’s your last name again?”

“Dugan.”

“Right, and all the Dugans, and whatever your mom’s family name is,” Marek said, “are all trapped in a similar harmonic, scientific mathematical order. That scientific mathematical order is your pattern in life, or your regular orbit. You have a regular pattern of life right, a pattern set by the foundational elements provided by your parents. We attribute our patterns, our regular habits, and the peculiar things we do to the DNA we share with our parents and the quirks they have that we consciously and subconsciously pick up.  

“But to our mind we’re different. We’re Corey Dugan and Antony Marek, and we’re proud of who we are, and anytime someone points out the similarities it ticks us off. Am I right? Right. You don’t want to be your dad’s son. You don’t want to be anyone’s son, in that frame. You want to be your own man. You want to be Corey Dugan, an individual who carves out his own path in life. Your dad, like mine, influenced you in ways large and small, and he probably encouraged and discouraged in various ways. He taught you right from wrong. He taught you how to tell the difference between good and bad, how to perform in school, and how to get along with other boys on the playground. He was your god at one point in your life. He was center of your universe, your Sun, and the influence you tried to escape your whole life.”

“I agree with all that,” Corey said, “but-”

“Hold onto your but for just a second,” Marek said. There was a bit of a challenge in Marek’s voice. He maintained his focus on what Corey was doing to the car they were under to finish up the job, but he also had maintained an anticipatory intrigue in his voice, as if he couldn’t wait to hear what he was about to say. “I have a question for you. If you weren’t on your back right now, I might ask you to sit down. I might even ask you to lay down, before I ask it, because it might knock you flat.”

“Shoot,” Corey said.

“Like those 19th century scientists studying planets, and their relationships to one another, if a scientist or mathematician, or someone who specialized in a little of both, studied your family, could they find you without ever meeting you? If they studied your parents, like those 19th century scientists studied the celestial mechanics of the planets they knew, until they were obsessed with it they were eating it in their tuna, could they know you before they were met you? They might be one or two degrees off, but I think they would surprise you by their accuracy.

“Could they find you, and provide some explanations for why you do some of the things you do that might surprise you. If they studied your dad’s characteristic habits intensely, could they know you better than you know yourself without ever having met you? Then, after they met you, they would have to account for any irregularities. To account for those, they would have to study your mom, your other family members, your friends, and anyone else who provided perturbing influences in your life. They could examine their habits, tendencies and peculiarities of your family members, friends, and various other seminal influences and explain all of the gravitational pulls on your irregular, or individualistic, orbit by studying your relationship to them, the Earth, and the universe? The science on this matter suggests that we should be able to find you in your little universe if we know where to look.”

“You’re saying that my mom and dad have had a profound influence on me?” Corey asked. “I don’t think this is as earth-shattering as you think, or you seem to be saying. I agree that my parents provided a huge influence on my life, and if you met me when I was twenty, your theory might hold some weight, but I’ve had so many experiences that have shaped me since that I don’t think a study of my parents would tell you that much about me anymore.”

“Fair enough,” Marek said. “There are always going to be variations of character between generations, but let’s take this out of the scientific arena. Let’s say that your dad has a work buddy, and they’ve stood side by side on an assembly line for twenty years, and he meets you for the first time. You’re telling me that that guy won’t know anything about you?”

“He won’t know anything about me?” Corey said. “Well sure, he’s going to know some things about me, parental influence is impossible to escape, as you say, but I think you exaggerate when you say he’s going to know me really well by studying my dad. A parental influence, no matter how strong, fades over time, but I would argue that any similarities this work buddy might make are made remarkable, or noteworthy, because my dad and I are so different.”

“We all say that Corey,” Marek said. “We all want to think that, but I’m guessing that your dad’s work buddy might shock you. The science suggests that these similarities are inescapable. I think the guy would find so many similarities that the discrepancies would be noteworthy. If this work buddy were a particularly observant fella, he would characterize those discrepancies as perturbing influences on your life, and if he put those in a separate ledger, he might be able to draw up a decent profile on your mother before he ever meets her.”

“I like the way you circled it back and closed the loop,” Corey said, “but it strikes me as one of those theories that can never be wrong no matter how wrong it is.”

“No matter how wrong it is,” Marek repeated in a mumble. “Okay, fair enough, let’s put this whole scenario into an algebraic equation where you know the answer, but the solution calls for solving for variables. Let’s say your friend’s dad never met you, but he knew both of your parents well, and he learned everything he needed to know about your favorite Uncle Dick, a couple of your best friends, and that teacher that had a profound effect on you. This guy might be able to draw up a decent profile on you, before he even meets you. Now, there might be some variances found in character, based on individual experiences you’ve had, or some outside influences that he doesn’t account for, but I’m guessing that if he studied your math, and he was particularly observant, he might be one degree off, like the guy who discovered Neptune.

“The point of it all, or the offshoot that formed my offshoot is that all of these internal and external particulars exist in your harmonic universe, until we learn that life is not a series of incidents that occur without reason, logic, harmony, or math. The question that that friend of your dad’s might ask is who influenced your dad? Who influenced your mom, and your favorite Uncle Dick? The greater question for him, at that point, would be do all humans have a primary source of influence, an ultimate harmony if you will? I’m here to tell you there is, and it’s fricking fascinating. It can be found within the discovery of the 7,83 gigahertz frequency that the earth operates on, in conjunction with the Earth’s vibrations, and the Earth’s relationship to Mars, Venus, Jupiter, and all the planets, and, of course, the Sun.”

“So, you’re basically talking astrology here,” Corey said.

“No,” Marek said. “Well, kind of, sort of. It’s so much more than that. Astrology has received a bad name over the years, and there are two different strains of astrology. Some astrologists take a more scientific approach, and others use it as more of a superstitious device. I guess my question to you is how do you find order in the world?”

“Science,” Corey said. “If all else fails science seems to me a decent denominator for everyone, but, wait, hold on a second. Humans develop scientific theories. Brilliant, inconsistent, and flawed human beings develop scientific theories. They base their theories on other flawed and inconsistent human theories, and they are held captive by their era, their knowledge, and as you said their technology. How many scientific hypotheses do other scientists eventually disproved? Who’s the most brilliant scientist of all time? Einstein? Some would say Einstein anyway. How many of Einstein’s theories have been disproven?”

“That’s science,” Marek argued. “There’s no consensus in true science. Every quality scientist attempts to disprove his or her hypotheses a number of ways. It’s worked into the scientific method.”

“True, but how many scientific theories verified by empirical evidence and peer review of one era are considered laughable by another?” Corey said. “Have you ever read the science behind bloodletting? It’s quite detailed, and just about every qualified physician, and scientist, of the era considered it factual and irrefutable science for thousands of years.”

“We could say that about any and every focus,” Marek said, “but what I’m laying out for you here, with the idea of this 7,83 gigahertz frequency, is that it was mathematically predicted as a global electromagnetic resonance phenomenon by some German dude. You’ve no doubt heard the idea that the human being operates on electromagnetic waves, and you also know that we can study and track internal ailments with EKGs and EEGs?”

“I have,” Corey said, “and before you go any further, I’ve read about all of this, this 7,83 gigahertz frequency. I had a friend who was an absolute disciple of it, so I did my research and most scientists consider it a bunch of bunk.

“Bunk?”

“Bunk,” Corey said. “As in the idea that the 7,83 gigahertz frequency thing influences our actions in surprising ways, is bunk. Does it provide a level of harmony, perhaps, but how commodious is that harmony? We can both make the stars line up anyway we want to conveniently fit our theories, but it doesn’t mean we’ve spotted a noteworthy pattern.”   

“I’ve studied these patterns,” Marek said, “and I’ve found some important patterns that I didn’t know existed.”

“Listen, I have not studied this influence as much as you apparently have, but from what I’ve read and heard, these theories are so wrong that it will take massive leaps of science just to be wrong. I’ve read articles on the global electromagnetic resonance, and I’ve walked away convinced that there’s something to it, but, hold on a second. The two questions I asked myself were, did I become convinced, because they used language that I could not understand, and I was impressed by their intellectual words? Or, did I, do I, think it’s such a cool concept that I hope it’s true.”

“It is science, and by its nature, we should all maintain a healthy sense of skepticism,” Marek said, “but another way of saying what I’m saying is that most basic human functions are electrical in nature. As you know, studies have shown, with some variances that we can change a personality with outside electrical influence, i.e. electroshock therapy. I don’t profess expertise on this matter, but the science behind electroshock therapy, or as it’s now called electro convulsive therapy, suggests that we can tweak the brain, and we can obliterate the brain with various electrical currents shot into the brain to induce a seizure.”

“From what I’ve heard, many consider electroshock therapy, or electro convulsive therapy, or whatever you call it, barbaric,” Corey said. “They consider it barbaric. Scientists consider it a barbaric procedure.”

“I gotcha,” Marek said. “When people say such things, I think they picture Jack Nicholson and Nurse Ratched, and One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest and all that. I don’t know if that depiction was exaggerated for dramatic effect, again I’m not expert on this topic, but from what I understand the procedure is more sophisticated now than it was in the seventies. They knock people out with amnesia now, so people don’t even remember the stimulation.”

“That’s not what I heard.”

“Ok, but can we agree that our brains are electrical,” Marek said,

“I think we can,” Corey said, “but it depends on where you take it.”

Marek laughed at that. He looked away from the car part he was removing and looked at Corey. He laughed harder. “Are you wondering where I’m going to take it?”

“That’s why I’m not giving you 100% agreement.”

“Ouch. Fair enough,” Marek said with more laughter. “Fair enough, but if we can agree, on some level, that our brains are electrical, and electro convulsive therapy can help severe mental health patients by altering their brain chemicals with electrical stimulation, then what do we say about the unaltered electrical brain? Is the reason for the severe mental health based on an electrical wavelength they share with family, friends, some of the citizens from their locale, and ultimately to all residents of the Earth, and the last resort medical professionals use to help the severe is by altering their brains?

“Do all of the Earth’s inhabitants have some sort of relationship to one another and to all heavenly bodies in the universe? Does your personality have a direct relationship to an electromagnetic wavelength and their wavelength? How far out from your core family do these wavelengths go? Why do astrologists suggest that our moods, our actions, and everything we do has a relationship to the positioning of the planets? How else could a 19th century math and science guy insist that an irregular orbit suggests that another heavenly body exists?

“Here’s another, rhetorical question that might blow your mind,” Marek continued. “If Corey Dugan went to another planet, and lived there for let’s say a year, would you be the exact same person? If I flew to that planet to meet with you would you be different? After a year? If you lived on Mars, would you be different in some ways? If we found a way to inhabit another planet, like Mercury or the dwarf planet Pluto, would you be different? What if we found a way to inhabit a planet in another universe, and you lived there for a year, would you be an entirely different person from the one I’m laying with right now, under a poorly maintained 2006 Honda Civic? The science suggests you might be. Does that blow your mind? It’s all about harmony and math and science my friend Corey Dugan.”

“I’d probably be different, because I’d be lonelier, hungrier, and I’d probably have some lack of oxygen scares.”

“Everything else being constant,” Marek corrected. “If everything was constant, and the only difference was that you were on a different planet, would you be different?”

“I guess, I don’t know,” Corey said. “It seems like a bit of a reach, because I would still be me with all my same memories and influences in life.”

“Fair enough,” Marek said, “but let me ask you a question based on an offshoot of an offshoot or an offshoot.”

“Shoot.”

“Why do enjoy the music you enjoy?” Marek asked. “Is it all about high school and your attempts to be cool? Did your parents affect your decision to prefer a certain genre of music? You might like heavy metal, I might like rap, and most of the mechanics in this garage like country, but we all love the Beatles? Why do some artists have almost universal appeal?

“I know a lot of people who can’t stand the Beatles,” Corey said.

“There are always going to be outliers,” Marek said, “but they probably have more universal appeal than most artists since the sixties. If not the Beatles, how about Michael Jackson? We’re talking universal appeal.”

“Pop music has more appeal than any other genre to a wider appeal than most genres.”

“Right,” Marek said. “Pop music, popular music, has a simple beat that appeals to more people than a complex beat with complex arrangements, but what is that beat? Why does one beat appeal more than others?

 “Some who study this relationship suggest that a great song can appeal to a wide array of humans, based on its ability to appeal to our shared wavelength. The casual listener might not be able to discern why one song appeals to them and another does not. Esteemed musicians and students of this effect point to the greater harmony that exists on this 7,83 gigahertz frequency, and they say that it exists in the heart of every being on earth. We label it harmony, with a lower case ‘H’. The capitalized harmony, they say, in what we share exists in the heart and soul of every being on earth from the most complicated to the simplest life forms.

“You’ve no doubt heard the phrase ‘music calms the beast’,” Marek said. “That concept relies on this principle. Mathematicians know the frequency. If you can find it in your own life, you’ll find all of the operations that exist between you and the Earth, until nothing seems so random anymore, and you realize they base this whole game on harmony and math. I heard rumors that if one could tap into this frequency, they would find that the whole world operates on it, and that various irregular influences, or what scientists call perturbing influences, can explain erratic human behavior. A simple lightning storm can influence the electrical brain in such a manner that it can explain why animals attack, the stock market dropping, and inexplicable acts of violence by all animals, including the human.”

“That’s fascinating and all that,” Corey said, “but-”

Fascinating right?” Marek said, “I’ve been fascinated by this for so long, for years anyway. I’ve been obsessed, since I first read that offshoot in that book. I think it explains so much, and it led me to believe that life and our actions and reactions are not as random as we think.”

“I’m not sure it, this 7,83 frequency, or wavelength, or whatever you call it, explains as much as you think it does.”   

“Really?” Marek said. “All this? You think all this is bunk?”

“You had me with your talk of parental influence,” Corey said. “I think it’s a bit of a reach, but you made some interesting points in there, but when you imply that I might choose eggs over pancakes for breakfast, because of the way Saturn’s moon Titan lines up with the dwarf planet Haumea, you lose me.”

“I never said that,” Marek said. “I said-”

“I know what you said,” Corey said. “I’m saying that most people, like us, who didn’t do well in school, take a logical premise, such as this one, and run with it. I’ve done it. I think we all have. And some of the times, we take that ball and run a little too far with it. Did you do well in school?”

Marek laughed. “If I did, you think I’d be here?”

“Right,” Corey said. “Same here. Yet, you like me, want to prove to me, the world around you, and you, that you’re not as dumb as you thought you were, so you run across a fascinating offshoot, and you develop offshoots upon offshoots, until you’re under a poorly maintained Honda Civic explaining the mysteries of the universe in conjunction with the meaning of life to someone you’ve never met before.”

“Ouch.”

“There’s nothing wrong with it,” Corey added. “We all do it. I do it all the time. I’ve done more times than I care to admit. With age comes wisdom, I say to you today, as a man who tried to convince the world that I’m not as dumb as I think I am.”

“Fair enough,” Marek said. “That certainly explains why I did what I did at the keno joint. I thought I found it, the 7,83 gigahertz, and I thought I could use it to make some real money while working there. I thought the reason it fell through was that I made the fundamental error of introducing my plan to a bunch of amateur co-conspirators who blew it all up.

“That’s what happens when you outsource I thought. To a bunch of idiots that is,” Marek said. “I thought it was the greatest scheme of all time. Who knows what happened, and maybe you’re right, but I would’ve loved to have no one but myself to blame for all of it. I got excited. Emotion started mucking up my reason and rationale in the course of execution. I thought I found something, and some level of conceit led me to tell others about it. I wanted them to think I was as smart as I thought I was, but the smartest course for me to follow would’ve been to play small ball and see if I could eek out a decent living capitalizing on this newfound knowledge. Analyze my actions anyway you want, and I’m sure you’ll fall back on your theory, but I couldn’t wait to tell others about it.

“We didn’t even have enough time to be sneaky or smart about it,” Marek said. “We didn’t make it two days in, before someone got scared and gave the whole ball game up. We made some trial runs, and it worked. All the keno balls came in, almost exactly the way I said they would. We didn’t make a fortune, but enough balls came in that we thought we could make a chunk of change. Then one of my buddies gets called into the office. The boss asked to have a word with him. He got scared, and the whole house of cards folded in on us. We escaped jail time. barel. It was a big deal. It made the local papers and all that,” he said.

Corey didn’t fact check Marek on the spot by pulling out his phone. He hated people who did that, but he was so curious that he would check it later that night. One of the only facts that the website of their local newspaper did confirm, from Marek’s account, was that everyone involved considered it a big deal. Those involved, led by Antony Marek, “narrowly escape jail time”. The owner of the Keno joint, and the District Attorney’s accepted a plea deal. The papers did not suggest that the incident involved Antony Marek finding the 7,83 gigahertz frequency of the earth, rather that he found a couple of cracked keno balls that were “suspiciously” not replaced. The D.A. and the owner agreed to accept a plea deal based on the idea that by the time the manager on duty discovered the ploy, the parties in question hadn’t accumulated “substantial” money. They also stipulated that all parties involved would pay all of the money back, with interest, and the state decided against proceeding, because Marek and his co-conspirators, were all young and they didn’t want to ruin their lives anymore than the publicity surrounding their actions would.

“But you might be right,” Marek said. “Maybe I wanted to prove myself on some level that would confirm my theories and prove I am not as dumb as I think I am, and I suppose that hope, as you call it, was strong, but I also wanted the money. I had this vision of me rolling around in money on my bed. It was stupid, impulsive, and all that, but how many stupid things do we do for money?”