I recently shared grilled cheese sandwiches with Imagination. At his insistence, we had to eat while sitting on a hovering porpoise named Gomer. The waitress was not amused.
“Should I be concerned that you’ve been spending more time with Reality lately?” Imagination handed me another half-sandwich. “Your subconscious says that you haven’t been yourself.”
“I’ve been busy,” I protested. Gomer flew through a hoop and Imagination fed him a slice of deep-dish pepperoni pizza. “I have a day-job, you know.”
The diner fell into a black hole and Gomer glared back at me. “We don’t buy it,” Imagination scowled. “I’m beginning to think that in your effort to boost Reality’s self-esteem, you’ve forgotten the value of Imagination.”
“Hasn’t this little feud of yours gone on long enough?” I swallowed the last of my sandwich. “You guys used to be pretty tight.” A passing unicorn speared a sandwich on its horn and melted into a sunset. “Now you’re just showing off,” I said. Imagination grinned and picked a squid out of his hair.
“Look,” he said. “Everyone thinks that I’m only good for art projects and kid’s TV shows. Governments, corporate offices, and schools devalue my role and tell people that I don’t have any place in their life.” Gomer snorted. “It’s bad enough that a large portion of the culture thinks I’m limited to providing filters and GIFs for their social media,” Imagination continued. “Even those of you who know better get bogged down in your schedules. It’s as if you were ashamed of me.”
“That’s ridiculous,” I answered. Gomer nipped at my leg. “Where would we be without you? The only reason you’re in this predicament now is because of that stupid tiff with Reality.”
“He started it.”
“Look, you know that he can’t help it if he has no imagination whatsoever. That’s his thing. It’s not like you’re exactly realistic, is it?” Imagination frowned and pulled a chocolate battleship out of his ear. “I think if either one of you was going to imagine a way to resolve this impasse, that would be you.”
Gomer cleared his throat and said, “I’ve been telling him that for years. No one listens to the imaginary flying porpoise.”
“Fine,” Imagination sighed. “I’ll talk to him on one condition. You have to keep me in the loop and stop shutting me out. I want to be involved from now on.”
I peeled away a thin layer of the waning sunset and folded it into a hot grilled cheese sandwich. “Oh, you will be.” I took a large bite and reveled in the creamy cheesy goodness. “Tell my subconscious I said, ‘Hi.'”
“You just did,” said Gomer.