Monthly Archives: December 2010

The Lack of Playtime

The Lack of Playtime

There is a scene close to the end of I heart Huckabees where the alleged antagonistic philosopher is explaining to two of the main guys about how life will always draw your attention outward.  No matter how much you try, you inevitably get drawn into life’s dramas.  I kind of relate the concept to how difficult chaos is to maintain because our brains continuously try to make “sense” of what we are doing and thus create order.

I was just thinking about that because it seems that the more responsibilities I have, such as work, university, family, etc. the less I remember that life is only this way because I’m human.  What I mean by that is that I see less of the BIG picture in life.  By big picture I don’t mean life plan, career path, etc.  I mean the external intricacies of how things fit together.

What I’m really trying to say is that when I’m busy I don’t have much playtime to think about what I would naturally be thinking about if I didn’t have anything external demanding my attention.  Which, in itself is a rather micro idea, one that really isn’t all that novel after all…

The Frequency of Conversation

The Frequency of Conversation

Conversations either flow or they don’t.  I find it strange when my in vain efforts to initiate conversations leads my counter party and myself to have a conversation over how my behavior has been interpreted as strange to them.

There is just no simpler way of saying it:

“I just wanted to talk to you, so I called, and when you didn’t answer, I left you a message.  When you didn’t return my call for a few days I assumed you didn’t want to talk to me….then when you finally did talk to me, I had already gotten over wanting to talk to you, but I was suddenly stuck in conversation with you and had to processes the two conflicting ideas that 1) I thought you didn’t want to talk to me and now 2) you are talking to me.”

So you can understand my confusion and hesitance because now that I am finally having the conversation that I was hoping to have 5 days ago, I can’t enjoy it because I have a feeling that I’m going have something I want to tell you about tomorrow and I’ll have to wait another 5 days until you are in the mood to talk with me.  At that time I will have probably forgotten what it was I wanted to tell you, so I won’t have anything to say, so I’ll just act nervous because all this stuff is going through my mind because someone in particular doesn’t like having conversations as often as I do.

On Culture Clash…

On Culture Clash…

For an eighth grade project, I had to build a miniature bridge out of glue and toothpicks with a boy in my science class.  Of course we waited until the day before the project was due to complete most of the work, so as you can imagine, I was in the boy’s large garage for quite a long time after school that day getting the project finished.

I wasn’t prepared for the long haul, so when his mother came home around 8pm with a whole bag full of sandwiches, I salivated at the thought of eating one.

As she walked by us, his mother said something to the boy in another language with a nod in my direction.

“Oh good!” I though, “She’s asking him to offer me one.”

I was right!  A few seconds later he asked, “Do you want a sandwich?”

“Yes,” I excitedly replied, “please!”   There was silence for a second while he gave me a quizzical look before replying back to his mother in their native language.

After his mother’s response, he told me, “Sorry, but in our culture it is impolite to accept food at someone’s house even if they offer it to you.”  His mother then handed him one sandwich.

While he took a break to eat his sandwich, I continued to work on the toothpick bridge as I planned my strategy to get home just in case they didn’t let me use their phone to call for my ride.

The Mediocre-Case Senario

The Mediocre-Case Senario

With many things, except money, I often do not dread the worst-case scenario the most.  I dread the mediocre scenario.  This is because if the worst-case happens, I am pretty damn sure that I will not go do it again.  I will rationalize all sorts of reasons for why that particular “worst” is definitely not going to enter into my paradigm ever again, and I will build coping mechanisms (i.e. habits) that ward against these defined “worsts”.

But after having gone through a mediocre scenario, the passion derived from the “worst” escapes me.  I have no real reason to repeat and no real reason not to repeat.

It is like a bad date, I know I will never see and/or date the guy again because of the disastrous events and feelings associated with the date, but at least I have a funny, drama filled story to tell.  But a mediocre date, oh god, I could be doomed to repeat the same vanilla over and over in my efforts to force some value or at least a tickle of a feeling of excitement.  But that is just one example.

The point is not to avoid the mediocre, it is to know what mediocre means and to learn from it sooner, rather than later.  Identifying the mediocre makes the exciting shine.