It is a well-known fact that people who are busy get more done than people who are not. Currently I fall in the latter category. Though this is not strictly true, but there is the paradox of the opening sentence… So much to do and still time seems to fly away.
Why? Because as the Spanish proverb tells us: “The busy man is troubled with but one devil; the idle man by a thousand”
My thousand devils are mostly in my head (as usual). When I am being rational I can see that I am writing and working on lots of little things, that not necessarily have taken off yet but still I am not just vegging about watching daytime tv. (Dangerous route!)
The thing is that there is actually so much going on, the move, the search, Christmas, that all should be happening at once and thus nothing is happening. Argh! Frustrating!
I try to be disciplined about it: I am dressed, showered ready to go and then suddenly it is 11am and all I have done is checked my emails and done some YouTube. (I know I know, it is the same as daytime tv, suckered in) It starts as research but I’ll admit that I get distracted and fritter time away.
I should job search with more purpose but then I stumble across an article about young women stitching themselves up by not thinking about their pensions on time. What?! Pensions?! Should I get a job, any job, to make sure that I can support myself in forty years time? Or should I hang tight and pursue my happiness first and foremost so I can see myself live another forty years, so to speak? They don’t cancel out each other of course, work and happiness. A mixture surely must be achievable. Though after having done the pension test, life should be really depressing – my monthly pension income would be roughly cover lunch for 4 people.
Hmm there is a reason to sort my life out. What if I do get old, spinster style, still mourning the career and the children that never were , just because I never actually got around to it whilst staring at YouTube clips- what on earth am I going to do then?
Oh to tread the line between finding a happy life and being the grasshopper that sang all summer. Thanks to Aesop and the protestant church we see happiness in art as something the devil created. I myself, no classic scholar nor protestant, still struggle with my search, my urge, my necessity to write and entertain. Eternal Damnation! Or translated in more secular terms: Eternal Poverty!
Yesterday I found a glimmer of hope, when Oprah and Paul McCartney were amongst the artist getting Kennedy Honors in the States. Oprah has never made it a secret that as a teenager she loved Paul in his Beatles-days and despite all the wonderful things that must have happened in her life, first love doesn’t die. Just imagine how she must have been feeling to be sitting next to her idol in the White House. I think those little coincidences are magical. Oprah is human, Paul is human, I am human. That is a good start. Then I watched the clip next the article and President Obama used an Oliver Wendell Holmes quote in his speech:
“To many people, the superfluous is necessary,” Holmes wrote. “The theater is necessary. Dance is necessary. Song is necessary. The arts are necessary. They are a necessary part of our lives.”
Panic over: it is valid, it is necessary, Barack said so. There is still hope.