Sunday, November 13, 2011

Waste of Time

I write mostly, to cure an itch

That is not to say I do so without any other point in mind. I mean sometimes, I'm trying to be funny, cynical, or just plain want to be angry at something.

Before, not too long ago, I went through a huge passive-aggressive stage, while dealing with some personal problems. That was a bit silly, but I guess writing it down at the time was part of the process... so that falls into relativity, absolving me of any guilt I should feel about it (I like to think)

Nowadays, it's just something I like to do, whenever I want to discuss something I have been throwing around my brain for too long. I'd say I have only published half of what I have written in entirety. The rest is a case of "write the letter today, post it tomorrow... on second thoughts, don't"

I once read a quote by an author I admire which I'm going to paraphrase: "I always wrote with my sister in mind. I feel it's good to write your stories as if you were intending to tell it to a specific person, not an entire audience. I always pictured her laughing at the story being told as she used to when we were young, while she was still alive". The author was Kurt Vonnegut... can't remember the specific book... maybe Slaughterhouse 5? Anyway, I digress... I thought his method was interesting... but when I tried it, it made me irritable. I guess I harbor a lot of ire somewhere inside. Suffice to say the method failed me, personally. Or maybe I should have pictured someone I liked talking to. That could have worked well. I guess I should find a better muse.

Anyway, though I like writing specific thoughts and to some extent, not-so-specific (quite like this pointless bit of banter) sometimes I feel like I'm doing so, just to kill time. I have an itch to do something with my life, having squandered the best part of ten years. I also like to read. See what my thoughts "look" like. And I like to read other people's blogs too. I like to read other regular people's thoughts, then I transmit my own, and we can all feel better about ourselves. It's all a bit Schadenfrued really. But in doing so, as in writing them down, helps me feel better about myself too, to an extent. Like my day was worth the little bit more because I got to empty my head and do something creative, even for ten minutes. For instance, I was thinking about the army today. I really wanted to see if I could do it, but I'm pretty sure I cannot, having squandered my youth. That boat sailed six years ago. At this stage I'd be paddling after it. So now I am writing, to fill a gap. To shut of my brain. And to scratch an itch.

Frankly, If I don't do something worthwhile with my time soon, I'm gonna burst. And I don't want to have to pay for carpet cleaning.

I'm poor enough as it is.

Plus my ass is raw with all the scratching I did in the last ten years. Gotta scratch something!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

10,000 Hours

10,000 hours...

That is 416 days, before you go looking

And lately, I've noticed I have given up on everything I was ever any good at, or beginning to get good at. Actually, honestly, I don't know if that is true. There is running for example... I have managed to keep that up... does that mean I'm crap at it? It's a weird conundrum I find. Having said that, I haven't been running for 10,000 hours yet, but when you think of the overall nutrition and the lifestyle change involved, not to mention the constant attitude needed, it's a daily slog... and all in all comes up to about 197 days, give or take, since I committed myself to it.

But I get intimidated by consistency... When I think of all the things I could be successful at and the time involved in them, I always seem to back out at the last minute. According to Outliers, the Story of Success by  Malcolm Gladwell, the repetition of any task for 10,000 hours will contribute to your overall success in it and also, a perfection or expertise of sorts (though I'm paraphrasing here... I never actually read the book, just overheard the reference a few times)

Then why is my typing dyslexia getting worse? I'm sure I have written for over 10,000 hours including school and homework into the mix! And why is it so hard to give something I like, like music, 10,000 hours before I quit for no apparent reason?

I have sat on my arse for a long time now, online, and I hate it... It bothers me that I cannot find a single thing worth doing from the comfort of my seat in this country. Of course I could go out and find something using my two legs and a bit of initiative ... but I like my computer and I like sitting down. And I've spent over 10,000 hours on my arse, so I must be pretty good at it. For some reason I'm thinking of a quote from Two-and-a-Half Men where Jake asks Charlie "Uncle Charlie, can I watch T.V?" and Charlie replies: "Well you have two eyes and a butt". There's wisdom buried in there somewhere,  perhaps.

But it doesn't seem like you're doing anything at all when you're just sitting, browsing jobs or courses or even reading online or watching television. And right now, in Ireland, an unemployed person such as myself has to fight hard to find a job, especially one that I like. I'm worried, because watching T.V is something I'm getting to be good at. But I want more than sitting there watching T.V. At this stage, I just want a job, any job, that I would happily spend 10,000 hours in... especially if it takes me away from this boring rut I find myself in. A year at anything other than sitting on my ass would be great. Running does provide a good break from the mundane but I guess I require more. When I think of the 10's of thousands of hours that have passed, the opportunities I have let pass and the failed tasks I have put time into, it just makes it all the more necessary to get good at something. I think of that 416 days, or 10,000 hours starting every day. What to do, what to do...

Of course I've been procrastinating for over 10,000 hours now, so I must be a professional at this stage