Last week’s post was a bit of a catharsis for me. After sharing a few of my failings with you, notions of other niggling habits of my nature began bubbling to the surface. It’s like a deluge from the skies. Once the reservoir is full, and the water breaks through the dam, it’s not long before the whole thing gives way. Suddenly I’ve got a big list of behaviors that I need to come clean about. Those of you who live downstream might want to move to higher ground. Many of you might already occupy higher ground, compared to me, but the non-sanctimonious among my faithful followers might want to head for the roof…NOW!
I decided to work with a list this time, because there are so many items to report. If I do a methodical cataloging of all my transgressions, I’ll be sure not to skip anything.
1) Library law-breakers
I am one of those people who puts holds on books that I’m not sure I’m ever going to read. I won’t really know, I tell myself, until I actually see the book. And then, sometimes, I request several books at one time. Now, if these are old books, with DAB (Dead And Buried – got this little tidbit directly from a librarian!) authors, which is usually what I look for, then it’s not that big of a deal, because there is not a long line of people interested in these books. Occasionally, however, I will request a recently published book, then I wait and wait for it to come. When it becomes available, I might still be busy with another book or two, so I wait until the last possible day to go pick it up from the library. It often sits unopened for a week or so before I get a chance to look at it. Then, whether I choose to read it or not, it stays with me until it is at least a couple of days overdue, and I finally get around to returning it, so that the other 65 patrons wanting to actually read this book can get the chance. If they knew it was collecting dust at my house, there would be a riot. Oh, and if that doesn’t shock you, get this – I also check out DVD’s and renew them once, and return them without ever getting around to watching them. I’m a space cadet. A space cadet with a library card and overdue fines piling up.
2) Disagreeable driving habits
I am not always nice when I am behind the wheel. I am trying to be better, but old habits die hard. First of all, I call everyone “Buddy,” and not in a complimentary way. I learned this years ago, from my dad. For example, “Hey, Buddy, you got turn signals on that thing?!” Or, “I don’t think so, Buddy. You’re not sneaking up on the inside lane and then cutting over on me!” Or perhaps, “Watch it, Buddy,” and “The speed limit is 45 mph, Buddy, not 4-point-5!” As I am saying these things, I am making evasive maneuvers in my lane (if possible). I would never use vulgar sign language, but I have been known to smile and wave enthusiastically at someone when they beep at me, just to pretend that I know them and am excited they honked at me. I have also, once or twice, made a goofy face at someone who did something really stupid, and then stuck my finger up my nose while making this face at them. (Okay….yeah, that one is bordering on the edge of vulgarity, you’re right.) How does one overcome these types of impolite piloting propensities?
I also like to drive fast. It is not something that I can control. From the time I was a wee little lass, I have been told stories of the curse of the Casey leadfoot. My children have inherited the curse from me, and I got it from the long line of Caseys who have gone before me, some of them riding their horse-drawn carriages through the streets at such breakneck speeds that women and children had to run for their lives. If I knew the magic spell for breaking this curse, I would do it. However, in conjunction with this curse, I seem to have received the blessing of never getting caught. So, I’m just living with this one, as best as I can.
3) Greeting card neglect
All of my relatives and close friends know this – I haven’t sent a greeting card or thank you note in years. The inspiration to carry out these kinds of actions evaporated from my radar years ago, and I have not tried to track it down. I do buy such cards from time to time, with good intentions, and I now have, in stock in a big drawer in my basement, a card to fit any occasion. All I would have to do is dig through them, dust one off, write in it, address it, and mail it, but no, I don’t do it. I am thoughtless and irresponsible. I am very grateful for the modern inventions of e-mail and social web sites, where I can say “Happy Birthday” and “Thank you” without leaving my armchair, but this ease of communication does not assuage my guilt.
4) Ipad recreation dependency
I have a serious addiction to card games on my Ipad. I can sit and play the same games over and over for hours. Then, in between games, I check Facebook, and the latest news, and my e-mail. I can’t remember what I did with my life before I got an Ipad…, but I bet it was fun. It probably had something to do with reading all those books I check out from the library. Or, possibly it included adventures from the great outdoors. I have fuzzy memories of such activities, recalled in washed-out colors, a vignette image of a life that once was. I can’t find my way back. That’s probably a good thing, because if I could get back, no one would be there. They’re all online.
5) Haphazard personal hygiene
Just recently, I got a new job. When I read through the instructional packet I was given as a new-hire, one of the instructions was “shower daily.” Crap. Were they going to make me sign something, or swear under oath that I would follow this rule? So far, they haven’t. Whew….because, I would hate showering every day. It’s such a huge ordeal and it takes so much time! And then, you have to get out of the shower, and dry off, and fix your hair, and put lotion on, etc., etc. Whose idea was this, that we should put ourselves through this every day?! I say, two or three times a week is plenty, as long as I lean over the side of the tub to wash my hair and armpits in between times. With all the time I save, I can get in several more Ipad games of 500 Rummy. Plus, my skin is not all dried out all the time, and I don’t have to wash so many towels. (You can see that I have rationalized my way out of feeling guilty about this issue.) Unfortunately, though, it doesn’t stop there. Sometimes, I don’t feel like washing my hands. If my hands are feeling dry and I put lotion on, then decide I have to use the toilet, I cannot talk myself into washing off all of that newly-applied lotion. If other people are in the house, I will turn the water on in the sink, and wiggle the towel rack for their peace of mind, but I am not wasting a fresh lotion application!
I think that about does it. You now know all of my deepest, darkest secrets. If you come back next week, I will know you are a dear friend, or, possibly, just as demented as I. Either way, it works for me!