I love days off, and I hate days off. They're the best of times, and the worst of times. Maybe you're thinking, "That's nuts!,"* but if you're like me and have the attention span of an amoeba,** the wealth of possibilities can quickly lead to sensory overload. From sensory overload it's not a long way to curling into fetal position with a pillow over your head, fighting the urge to suck your thumb because you're past that stage now. You've moved on to mood-stabilizing drugs. Which are, truth be told, a whole lot better than sporting a wrinkly thumb.
If I have more than two choices, that's it. Lost cause. Stick a fork in 'er, cuz she's done. Leaving me on my own isn't the most responsible thing to do, especially if I don't have an agenda. Because freedom, for me, equals running from shiny object to shiny object. Shiny objects are generally rectangular and have pages. Pages with ink on them. Ink in the shape of letters, which form words, which are my passion.
The internet certainly doesn't help matters. Nor does being on Twitter, though that's a foregone conclusion. I love words, and Twitter offers the challenge of condensing thoughts into 140 characters. TRANSCENDENT! It's like the world is challenging me to a word game! Only I'm the only one who hears the call, because it's going on in my head. And 99 % of the time I'm talking to strangers, or just throwing sentences – and partial sentences – out into the ether. Many of my words are surely disregarded, left hanging there for the Library of Congress to archive. Which verges on creepy, considering some of the things I've said in the heat of the moment.
What will they think of me?!
Yeah. I thought so.
The lack of attention span infects other parts of my life, things that are important to me but not necessarily to anyone else. Like my critical reading. When I'm overwhelmed by teetering piles of books towering next to me it's hard to block out the thought of THE NEXT BOOK! and hunker down to concentrate on THIS BOOK! in order to later form cogent thoughts on what I read. That really stresses me out. But it shouldn't, because I'm doing what I love, right?
For some decent, free entertainment take me to the grocery store cereal aisle. Then watch my mind quietly implode.
Flakes or pops?! Cocoa or plain?! Marshmallow or nuts?! Shredded?! Frosted?! Things that pop?!
Some say this is the natural result of having a creative mind. Creative people think about the potential in all things, while others with less in their heads quietly go about their days, contentedly doing the same things by rote. Day by day. Week by week. Year by year. Asking nothing of life but continuity, the likelihood you'll probably wake up again tomorrow, and the day after that, to do the same old crap all over again.
And again. And again. AND AGAIN.
Do you think Bubba here worries an awful lot? Does existential angst keep him up nights? Could he even pronounce existential? How 'bout angst? Dog? Cat? Do the things he doesn't know bother him at all?
Just making it to the next paycheck is good enough for him. Then there's me. The worrier. The dread-er. The what if!-er. The person who thinks things to absolute Death.
An over-thinker, by definition, is in possession of a brain that never shuts up. Twenty-four hours a day. Three-hundred sixty-five days a year. Chatterchatterchatterchatterchatter…
Never. Shuts. Up.
So, then. I've laid the groundwork. The scene has been described, hopefully just short of ad nauseum. What should I do on my day off?
Well, I need to do laundry. Desperately.
But there's also that huge pile of books to be read and reviewed.
What to do?
You see my quandary.
Some may say – and I believe this is wise, though no easier for knowing that – split your time between the things you need to do and the things you want to do. Read for a while, then do a load of laundry. Read. Laundry. Run to Goodwill. Read. Read. Laundry. Read. Read. Read. Vacuum. Read. Read. Read. Read. Read. Read.
There's that, too.
So. Back to square one. A day off. Lots of choices. The urge to feel adult and responsible, packed into the mind of an amoeba. The potential.
Don't worry; I'll figure it out. I just need to check Twitter first.
* And, if you aren't, why not?!
** My sincere apologies to all amoeba. Amoebi? You know who you are.