I can remember being a kid, somewhere around eight years of age, trying to bend metal and break tree branches with my mind. Of course, at the time I found it all confusing, never able to achieve any significant telekinetic connection between the matter and my will. I would sit and stare for hours at one insignificant little flower, chosen for it's already wilted qualifications, ready to fall naturally at any minute, and I would try with all my might to will just one petal to drop to the ground. Granted, I didn't really know what a will was, but beyond all reason, even my own, I couldn't let go of the secret urge dwelling in my bones to one day confirm my ability to control the world around me, and create some union between my spirit and the earth.
It didn't work.
No matter how long I would stare at the object that I was attempting to manipulate, nothing would ever happen. The metal wouldn't bend, and neither branches nor flowers nor leaves would fall to the ground at my express wish. It seemed strange to me; in my heart I was sure I could do it, but no matter how hard I tried, I just couldn't change the world around me with my mind.
Sometimes I would be sitting quietly, attemtping to mentally manipulate my surroundings, and I could sense a kind of reluctance on the part of the trees and flowers to communicate with me. They didn't want to be manipulated; at least that's what I felt they were trying to say.
Now, my uncle had a farm full of chickens, and I always knew exactly where the fresh batch of chicken eggs was. When I was twelve, I would take a few and simply toss them against trees and rocks for the sake of entertainment, but as I grew older, I became little more refined. I would sit in front of a pile of fresh eggs and stare at them for hours, concentrating all of my attention on one egg in particular, trying my best to make it explode. Granted, the idea of exploding eggs with my mind might sound a little crazy, but one time, something very peculiar did indeed happen. I was staring straight at an egg for something like three hours, and sure enough, kabooooomb! The thing exploded right before my eyes. I immediately ran to grab my uncle and show him my handywork. He stood there with his hands warmed under his arm pits, turned his nose slightly into the wind, and said, "Shit, boy, you smell that? That damn egg exploded cause it was rotten and full of gas. Maybe you should check your shorts for telepathic powers!"
Of course I didn't believe him, or perhaps I just didn't want to admit the fact that I really had nothing to do with the egg exploding. Either way, I simply refused to entertain the notion of a strange unexplainable coincidence, where me and the egg just came together for that one explosive instant in time and I had nothing to do with it. The odds seemed to be on my side, and I was convinced that I was the one who made the egg explode.
When I was sixteen, I went surfing for the first time ever in my life. The experience left me confused and excited at the same time. After about six hours in the water, my arms were completely exhausted, my skin was burning from the exposure to the sun, and I felt like my head was full of salt water. But I did catch a wave.
I went to my uncle's house, grabbed a beer out of his fridge, and thought about the day. Sitting there on the couch with a cold Bud in my hand, I experienced a deja-vu of epic proportions. I couldn't explain it at the time, but strangely enough, surfing gave me the same kind of rush as trying to bend spoons. At that very moment, surfing hijacked my entire life. I went out and tried to catch waves whenever I got the chance. The beautiful sirens of the deep called out to me day and night. The best part of the whole deal was that every time I went to the beach I met other people who were also dedicated to surfing. Most of them could be categorized as freaks, and I felt right at home.
Hippies didn't surf, jocks didn't surf, businessmen didn't surf, and rock stars didn't surf. A Vietnam vet convincingly told me that a guy named Charlie didn't surf. It was the sole territory of the outcast, the never-landers and bizarre clientele of the ocean who surfed. Viking gypsies, reborn in suburban California, all sharing the same bad attitude and a palpable love of the ocean; they surfed. Confused kids without direction, skaters, and other mad men adrift in space and looking for bad habits; they were the ones who surfed.
The ocean became my refuge. So much so, that it didn't really matter to me when my parents separated, and I moved in with my dad, because I got to live even closer to the ocean and actually got to log in more water time. My father was suspicious of my friends, and my mom wasn't really around. The ocean took care of me.
By the time I was twenty three I had surfed all over the world. I had been to Hawaii, Fiji, Argentina, you name it. Chances are, if there was some new break discovered, I was one of the more than a few people who knew about its location.
Febuary 17th, 2008, about two years ago, is when I finally learned how to bend spoons. I was surfing a chain of fairly unpopulated islands in Indonesia at the time. The sky was crystal clear, the water was turquoise, and on that afternoon, I paddled into the best barrel of my life. The waves were solid double overhead and breaking over a shallow, sharp coral reef. I took off on a monster, and when I found myself deep inside the malignant, foaming pit, I could see and feel my imminent doom approaching. The open eyeball of the blue tube was receding at a faster rate than I could possibly accelerate, and I fairly certain that there was no way I'd make it through the chaotic vortex in time to reach the shrinking light at the end of the tunnel.
My eyes could still see through the white water, at the horizon line of the ocean, just outside the tube. I focused all of my attention on one spot of the rushing ocean in front of me, just like staring at that pile of eggs back on my uncle's farm, and all of the sudden I felt myself accelerate like a dragster. My body was at the mercy of my mind, and I could feel my hypothalamus taking over; I sensed that I was being forced out the tube, like a dirty sock rung out through the spin cycle... but I made it.
I was sure something truly bizarre and esoteric had happened to me out there, but was at a loss to explain what it was. I had distinctly felt my body and mind working in harmony at the instant when my brain and my pure, driving focus propelled me beyond the wall of white.
When I got back to the boat I asked the captain the name of the break I has been surfing. He casually looked over at me, and with a sly grin, he said "Oh, I think the local name is translated into something like "Spoons".