A Helpful Device


I came up with the little item pictured above a while ago, and it’s something I really wish I possessed in a form more operable than a drawing… It’s The Serenotron (trademarked and patent pending, just in case), capable of monitoring and displaying the overall stress level in a person’s life, 24/7, if desired. It lets you know how close to – or far from – achieving true Serenity you are at any moment of the day or night. (Hmmm… Suddenly, even that idea is sounding a little stressful… Thus underscoring the very reason I need it!)

The Serenotron is basically absolutely silent, glowing with a soft ambient light, but is also capable of playing appropriate music, when so directed – everything from Philip Glass on the left, to Buddhist chants on the right. It is fully manufactured and operable without consuming any fossil fuels; assembled and packaged by reasonably-paid individuals over the age of eighteen, working in well-ventilated, comfortable establishments with their own employee lounges, fitness centers, and free, locally-sourced, organic cafeterias; work days no longer than six hours; and a work week no longer than four days, with two weeks’ paid vacation to start. The unit is offered at a modest price, and available at no charge to those struggling in financial straits – who probably need Serenity most of all. (I like to at least try to think globally and responsibly…)

The various categories on each unit are custom-tailored to each purchaser’s individual specifications, based on responses to a detailed questionnaire. (Sadly, the completion of that questionnaire, in itself, often eliminates the need for purchase of the unit, but I’m willing to suffer those consequences, for the greater good.) It’s apparent here that there are some highly personal categories of my own on the unit pictured above – but I know exactly what they are – and you would know yours equally well.

The unit is not operable from your laptop, tablet, cell phone, or other mobile device. In fact, any time the Serenotron senses any of those devices in operation within ten feet of its location, its needle begins to move inexorably toward the left… This movement takes place no matter what the specific nature of the activity being pursued on said device – checking Facebook will result in exactly the same amount of movement as working on your dissertation. (We thank the inventor’s creative wisdom for the inclusion of this particular feature. In the world of The Serenotron, there is no “good stress” or “bad stress.” There is only Stress…)

It should be noted that the Serenotron does not, and cannot, register any of the following: The weather; the time of the month; any upcoming holidays and/or relatives; anything anyone else just said or did to you; the receipt of any robocall; “news” from any source; the course or result of any political campaign; any knock on the door; or any physical anomaly, of any magnitude, occurring at any time in your body, among many other things. The Serenotron is oblivious to outside events; its only focus is YOU. That’s the whole point.

I need this little device, since I am so often totally unaware of those moments when my needle begins to move inexorably toward the left, until the unit – and I – are both already well on our way out of “Iffy,” and heading for “Bad”… And then, so often, beyond…

We’ve become accustomed to our little devices that remind us of all our appointments, all our phone numbers and email addresses, tell us where we are (so to speak), and inform us of every single thing that someone thinks is happening in the Universe – from a meteor’s striking Siberia to the ongoing debate as to whether or not the currently pregnant Kim Kardashian is getting fat. It seems to me that we could all use some little reminders, from time to time, to PAY ATTENTION to what’s going on within ourselves. The Serenotron is designed to measure just one thing, and one thing only: Its owner’s current spiritual location anywhere between “Really Bad” and “Buddha World.” And that’s why I need it – because where I am on that scale is the only thing that really matters.