Tiglekso: The Glass Is Both Half-full and Half-empty

Tragic things happen, but there’s something to be learned from it. Half-empty= tragedy, half-full=lesson.


It had been a delicious meal and we were more relaxed, but the thought of some sort of Wipzib roaming around in the up-top world was disquieting. I took a sip of coffee foam and used a spoon to eat a lump of ice cream still floating on the top. Doug jabbed at a piece of eggplant.

Doug said, “Y’know, I think you were right a while back when you said you thought you saw Zusoiti’s followers wandering the streets, organizing rallies. I thought at the time you were just imagining it.”

“I think it’s Wipzib.”

“What’s that?”

“Um, a secret police.”

“Well, um, we’re in big trouble. How minor is this catastrophe do you think?”

“Oh, just the end of the world… Just kidding… um, I think…”

“Hmm. The dance of doom. Is it? Well, so, what would Utcoozhoo say?”


“Yes? And what does that mean?”

“OK. Here we go again. Um, Tiglekso means, um, uh, um … “


“It means: there is no sense in brooding on possibilities in a fog that may yet bring water to a catch-net in the desert, no sense in not letting the music of fog horns teach caution when only the dawn will lift yearning spirits ready to grow in sun and in shade, these spirits who have looked for dream stars in the dark of nightly prayers, and no sense to brood when all is lifted by the clearing.”


“In short: don’t worry.”

“Oh? Fog condenses into water on netting hung on a tree?”

“Yes. This is just an approximation — you have to feel the word as a whole to see it all at once and the metaphors can change, although the underlying concept is static. At least that’s how Utcoozhoo last said it, I think. Maybe I’ll ask my Mieta, um, my tutor.”

“You have a tutor to teach you Utd’mbts?”

“Yes, his name is Apacevj. I’m supposed to make an appointment with him, but…”

“You’re procrastinating?”

“Yeah. Not just Utd’mbts: I have to learn rules and law and protocol and a bunch of other stuff. I’m in a fog… Hey let’s make a sunrise now!”

“What d’ya mean?”

“You get a tarpaulin or plastic sheet or something to cover the hallway carpet from your workroom, and meet me in the hallway. I’ll get some paints from my room. Race you to the hallway — loser cleans the dishes.” I knocked over my chair and ran toward the door.

Doug said, “Wait, not fair. You got a head start.”

I turned and shouted over my shoulder as I left, “And bring some brushes.” I got to my room, grabbed a bag, ran out through the living room into the hallway with my duffel bag packed with tubes of acrylic paints. I shouted, “I win, I win!” Doug came lumbering out onto the gold carpet with a giant rolled up tarp. He dropped it with a thud. I kissed him. We unrolled it all the way down the hallway and covered all the carpet.

“Wait,” he said. “I’ll get a bucket of white paint as primer and a bucket of blue for a basic sky background.”

“As long as you’re going, could you also look in my room and get some charcoal sticks or some soft 4B pencils…”

“OK,” he said and turned back. He has a nice behind and a bold brisk walk. I had some good ideas for a mural and for him.