Short Stories From 10 Years Ago – October 26, 2004
Just Put Me Away
Short Stories From 10 Years Ago – October 26, 2004 – Sometimes I think I should be put in a home. No, not a home for the aged, but a nice getaway for the unbalanced. Maybe a Green Acres for the feeble-minded. Was it only a couple of days ago that I was keenly aware of my good fortune in light of having seen the old lady in the wheelchair? Now correct me if I’m wrong. So why pray tell do I feel as if I’ve just been steam rolled by a tar spreader.
Last night I had a wonderful dinner with Eric and Dorothy – (she is a spectacular cook) – she could feed 15 people with a jar of Cheese Whiz and a box of shredded wheat. After we finished eating, Dorothy and I were chatting about the menu for my Christmas dinner. I suggested peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Dorothy thought that might be inappropriate. The thought of a special menu for the dinner was making me feel tired and inadequate. Whatever happened to Campbell’s tomato soup and a cracker or two?
Right on top of finding my culinary talents challenged, I left early this morning to attend Day 2 of my Internet real estate course. I came away at the end of the day feeling on overload. I can’t possibly scramble up the learning curve of all this information before I’m seventy. Aren’t I supposed to retire at some point in my life? Maybe not. Perhaps this is it for me. Constant work and then I’m dead.
Now this is the next really important question? Given my inadequate belied in my kitchen self and with my sense of business acumen at a low ebb, was this a good time for this marginally chubby, middle-aged babe to go to Winners and look for some new clothes, actually any clothes that would fit around my ever expanding hips and formerly sleek thighs. The answer to this, of course is – “Big Mistake”.
I wandered up and down the aisles of thin clothes, tiny jeans, cropped tops, mini skirts, fitted jackets and tight sweaters. I felt like a behemoth, and not just your ordinary behemoth, but one who can’t cook or fully understand her computer. After an hour, I’d found a striped turtleneck sweater that made me feel like Dame Edna (all I needed was the bloody gladiolas) and that was a wrap. Not a single pair of elastic waist pants was in sight and sensible shoes were out of the question. Only CFM spikes or furry slippers were in evidence. I left feeling a tad dreary, intent on coming home and getting on my treadmill and walking to Utah. I’m sure I’d lose ten pounds if I walked to Utah.
You can see why I think I should be put away. Not put down – just away in a quiet corner with a simple puzzle or two – nothing technical – maybe a copy of See Spot Run or some plasticine. Today, I feel as if I can’t manage. My coping mechanism is overburdened with information. I was relieved to know that I wasn’t the only person in the class who felt the same way. Being as proficient as I am at my computer, I can’t imagine what it must be like for someone who hasn’t even started on the learning curve.
So to clear my head of the technical and information overload, I just went for a 2.5 mile walk with Howard. Not everything in life is related to computers, work, cooking, dinner parties and chubby thighs. There is a whole world out there of interesting people, great literature, fine films, travel, art, museums, music, enlightening conversation, charitable endeavours, learning and seeking spiritual truth.
The best way for me to deal with overload is to engage in a pursuit completely different than the one causing me to feel distressed and disconnected. Having done that, I feel a lot better. I may rethink that home for the feeble-minded and instead have a hot bath and an early night to bed. Tomorrow is on its way and I have a fresh new list of “to do” messages, but that’s okay, I always manage to keep moving forward. I just needed a wee melt down today. I’m better now and the striped turtleneck is actually quite fabulous!