Clif Bar Memoir

Clif Bar oh Clif Bar, how you mock me so. Your red mountaineer, chalk bag included, traverses an arête while I hop across Cantor’s Diagonal Argument. For both of us, each move is calculated, and simplicity is elegance. Exhaustion seems to plague your body. What about your mind? With you around, no one dares shows signs of weariness.

I hunger for equivalences in proofs, the first minute of sleep and those really nice jeans I bought that my familiar-looking-jean-clad friend who isn’t my friend promises she doesn’t know about. You, “Cool Mint Chocolate (now with Caffeine!),” save me from the cliff. The cliff that is the antithesis of Clif.

Chocolate rubbery chunks, machine smooth. So far from human touch that the first bite like a person’s first kiss unclenches the tightly packed oats and warms the surface. It’s a mutual warmth that turns a morning sigh into a morning hi. Your mouth fills with spit. Definitely a first kiss.

There have been times where I’ve wanted to be you, red shirt man. Bliss and fear plague the climber (and the mathematician). Everyone assumes you are climbing up the mountain. But climbing down is so much more difficult and scary. I know. There are many wonderful cliffs in my life.

Organic. Vegan. Energy. Earthy. Sugary. Brown. Buzz words. Personality Traits.

Gary lived in a garage with a dog, skis, climbing gear, bicycle, and two trumpets. Gary got hungry one day climbing. Gary was unsatisfied with the energy bars provided. Gary had a dad named Clifford. Gary likes red. And voila, the Clif Bar.

Red man, do you ever think about me?

My friends and I have separation anxiety whenever we’re more than 128 bytes away from each other. Thus naturally even when on the toilet, a cellphone must be present. After wiping and before flushing, a text message will be sent with letters mirroring the shape of said business. Every food maps to some bit string. String Beans? “P.” Banana? “L.”. Carrots and Peas? “W.” Clif Bars? “OOOOOO.”

Red man I don’t know if your climbing up or climbing down, whether you’ve reached your goal or whether you ever will. But know, there is a reward. A scenic view. A stance with both feet on the ground. A good night’s sleep. A Q.E.D. A Clif Bar.

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One thought on “Clif Bar Memoir

  1. Very nicely written. Every human endeavor – whether math or mountain climbing – has similar challenges. And in many ways similar rewards. The reward is both the journey and the goal.

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