Bees are bulimic and we are enabling them. I am not oblivious to the absurdity of that statement. I’m all too aware of the random ridiculousness of the thought, and I’m painfully aware of how ludicrous it is that I’m not only entertaining the idea, but that I’m actively writing it down. Welcome to the asinine inner workings of my creative process.
But, if you’ve read this much already you might as well watch this dumpster fire unfurl with me.
Bees binge on pollen and nectar, and purge at the hive. And, rather than helping them unpack whatever collective trauma they are undergoing as a society, we choose instead to harness the golden power of their amber ejections in an effort to appease our own appetites. Seems like a pretty shitty move on the part of the human species if you ask me.
Now, I recognize that those more scientifically astute than I am will justifiably disagree with my assessment by stating that bee regurgitation is not “technically” vomit. They will probably point out that “technically” the nectar never enters or touches the bees’ digestive or intestinal tract, but is, instead, stored in a separate, secondary stomach intended for nectar and pollen collection. But, I also recognize that just about any sentence in which someone emphasizes the word “technically” is usually just a vain attempt to deny an experiential reality by pedantically tap dancing through a factual loop hole…It also means they’re probably just being a dick…
I’m sorry, but if a substance is collected into “a stomach” and is then forced back up, that’s called puke. So, who’s really the unreasonable asshole in this scenario; the person suggesting that honey is enchanted bee upchuck, or the guy who feels the immense need to make a “technical” distinction between regurgitation and vomit?
If it looks like a duck, swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck, then its probably a bee with bulimia.
To be fair, I realize that humans aren’t solely responsible for the bees’ unhealthy relationships to food. I think its safe to say that they’d probably be throwing up nectar and pollen into honeycombs regardless of whether or not we habitually sweetened our cuisine with the product of their communal retching, but exploiting an ecological eating disorder and calling it a culinary delight still seems questionable.
If you’re utterly confused and wondering what the fuck any of this has to do with anything? That makes two of us. Not only have I spent the past hour writing this jumble of nonsensical randomness, at one point, I shit you not, I had four different tabs open on my computer; each devoted to researching bee barf and finding various synonyms for the word “vomit”.
The one thing that is keeping this whole situation from being an immense source of shame and inner derision is the simple fact that this is how writing works for me. This is what creating is like. It’s coming across a random thought and having the obstinance and audacity to write it out; the tenacious gall to see where it takes you; the bold-faced bravery to go where it leads. It’s seeing wisps of light down a rabbit hole and having enough courage and curiosity to chase it down.
Creativity is raucous and unseemly. It is rarely, if ever, rational. Inspiration is reckless and unruly. It will almost always bring you to places you never had any intentions of going. You will trip and fall and stumble trying to follow. You will get beaten and banged-up in the process of trying to keep up.
Elizabeth Gilbert says that “Every morning…you’ll wake up bruised and hurt and shamed and inspiration will be like ‘hey, you wanna do it again?'”. That’s what makes writing and making so brutal and dangerous; so interesting, so therapeutic, and so cathartic. But, its also what makes it so exciting and so much fun.
Do you remember fun?
Do you remember that writing, and creating, and making, is supposed to be fun?
Yes, writing is hard. Yes, creating is difficult. We have to delve deeply into our darkness , drink coffee with our demons, and sift through the sources of our sorrows and struggles. It’s taxing and strenuous. But, its also jubilant and exhilarating. There is a joy-filled abandon available in the sorrow. There is a hopeful exuberance to be had amidst the struggle and strife, if only we are willing to say “fuck it” and follow some of our irrational oddities.
You will have scrapes, and scratches, and scars, but you will also have a story for each and every one.
And, you will have so much fun; a delicious and tantalizing amount of fun, and it will taste so sweet…like honey, but…maybe without all the vomiting…