View From My Apartment 9
I think it’s only fitting, since it has been forever since I have posted, that I write about something that is clearly one of my favorite things: Procrastination.
I’m sure I’ve mentioned it before. But, because of its clear importance in my life, I feel it..s important to talk about it again.
Procrastination. Or maybe, I’m just someone in favor of crastination. What is crastination? I don’t know. I would look it up, but that would require me to get up, cross the eight feet to my book shelf and get down the B.A.D. (Big Ass Dictionary). I’ll do it later.
I don’t know how I became a procrastinator, but, here I am. I wait. Maybe I’m a waiter, not a procrastinator. Nah. Because if I’m a waiter, then I’m just waiting for the right moment, with procrastination, one is experiencing the right moment to do what ever activity one might have, but they are putting it off.
I like to distract myself. Just now, I looked out the window to see what was there, not to think of this next thought, but, what might be more interesting out side rather than inside my head. Back to distraction: thank god I was born when I was, in a century that thrives on the next big distraction. TV, movies, gossip. So much information is flowing at all times, it takes effort to shut it out, rather than a century ago, one probably had to make an effort to find out what was going on in the world.
And now, of course, we are reaching a point where our distractions are competing with each other. TVs are getting bigger and flatter..one company is putting out a flat panel TV with an ambient light on the back..as if the flashing images of your favorite shows are no longer enough to remind you where to look.
Game consoles are getting faster with better images, and of course, you can also multi-task in your distraction, because they can also be used as DVD players. And in fact, with the new Wii, you can play sports using the remote, going through the motions and everything, probably work up a real set. It’s only costs several hundred dollars, much better deal than buying an 80 dollar racket to go play tennis. It keeps you safe out of that dangerous sun and that noxious fresh air.
Not to be out done, and taking a different course, is the MP3 player..smaller and smaller, with more and more storage space. Now, we can take our music library out for a jog, which in the old days of CD awkward, in the middle ages of cassette tape weird, and the ancient days of vinyl upsetting, and I don’t think people jogged in the days of the shellac disks. Perhaps in the future we shall be able to implant our MP3 players under our skin and control it by our finger tips, uploading with a wire stored in our nose.
(Whoops. I just looked up gramophone records on Wikipedia. I wanted to know what they used to be made of, for the above paragraph, and then I got stuck reading about the argument between CD and vinyl regarding sound fidelity. So, let’s just take this as an example of the quick sand like quality of the internet to distract.)
Honestly, I distract my self from getting things done because I don’t always want to get things done. That sounds counter intuitive, I know. But. Well. I’m a writer. So, I’m supposed to write, right? So, what happens if I write long enough? Well, probably, I would finish something. And when I finish something, I need to do something with it, right?
But, what if nothing happens with the stuff that I’ve written? All that time wasted. So, it goes.
Let me be more honest. Sometimes I want to distract myself from the work at hand because…ok…let me put it this way. I work with deadly chemicals. In this case, the deadly chemicals are the ones in my brain. I hope the work that I create touches people some how, some way emotionally, that means I’m triggering chemicals in their heads, which means, I need to get into some emotional places myself. The deadly chemicals.
Writing truthfully, honestly doesn’t come easily. It’s exhausting. It’s hard. Especially when you begin stepping into things that might hurt. Hey, not everything can feel good!
I know when I’m getting into something close, personal, because I begin to get antsy. I want to search for something on the internet, I want to change what I’m listening to, I want to go check out what’s on the History Channel (World War 2, again!?), rather than to sit and deal and write about something that is personal, painful, and perhaps best not brought up again.
I procrastinate to avoid. Avoid ..going there… Avoid finishing. Avoid, avoid, avoid. It’s far easier to distract myself with an MP3 player than face what..s going on around me.
Because if I face what is going on around me, then I have to do something about it. And maybe that’s why distraction devices race off the shelves: we don’t want to really look outside our windows, we don’t want to hear what the person next to us on the subway maybe saying, we don’t want to know.
Because then we would have to do something about what we see…