According to popular belief, culture, call it what you will, our existence is dominated by shapes.
Life itself has a circle; people have a circle of friends - two circles in fact, a close circle, and a wider circle. Incidentally, there is no link between these two circles in terms of friends being able to move from the wider to the close circle freely. It is us, at the centre of these two circles, who decides which of our friends are in either circle. We may choose to bring someone from our wider circle of friends into our close circle of friends - and we do this via the social equivalent of those toy grabbing crane machines you see in amusement arcades. And like those machines, sometimes mid way through this transfer, we drop the friend - returning it to its original circle. Often because we realise that there is a reason why that person is not in our close circle.
Anyway, circles figure prominently in life - even the phrase "what goes around comes around" is a circular reference. But circles are not the only shapes. What about squares? We are told it is important to have three square meals a day, a common phrase for tidying up is to 'square' things away, and when two people don't like each other or are arguing, they square up to each other. Huey Lewis and The News once sang "It's hip to be square", and as anyone with the slightest hint of fashion knows, Square is the new Black.
And then we have love triangles, pyramid schemes, and our obsession with toblerone - all triangles.
But I don't think life is that neat. I accept that various aspects of life have a shape associated with them, but they are shapes that were drawn by a toddler on a child's chalkboard.
In reality, the circle of life isn't even a circle. It's a wobbly oval/figure of 8 that stops suddenly and then restarts in a completely different place.
Our circle of friends is more of a star shape because even within our 'close' friends, there are some who we are closer to than others.
The only people who get three square meals a day are convicts, and they don't deserve them. The rest of us skip breakfast, maybe lunch, and more often than not have something fast and less than healthy for our evening meal. That's not a square meal, that's the shape custard makes when you drop it on the floor.
And love triangles? Don't ask me - I've never been in one. I've been at one end of a love line - when I've been in love with someone who didn't feel the same way. I've done that on many an occasion, and in fact have also seen a love "V" - That's where I've been in love with someone who has been in love with someone else, and neither of them have been in love with me.
So life is not full of neat little shapes, it's a jumble of badly drawn lines that cross over and stop/start all over the place. It's hard, painful, difficult, and just getting through it to a half decent age is an achievement in itself.
But it's interesting - and I'd rather that than being dull and boring.