Wednesday, 10 October 2007

Of Idleness and Industry

Sounds like an Austen working-title.

Anyway, this is the missing post, that I wrote in my notebook on the 12th of september. About a month ago, in other words. But it is still interesting.

Here goes:

I am an idle sort of person. I tend to postpone things that need doing, and avoid physical activity - not from any particular dislike of it (I love walking in nature, for instance), but simply because I have so many better ways to spend my time.

I am perpetually short of time. I don't have enough time to do what I like the best, and because I grab what chances I have, chores are eternally postponed.

Thus I seem lazy. Very lazy.

I have always semi-admitted to being lazy, but I started questioning that after a comment a good friend made during a conversation. People were talking about having majored in this or that subject, and I said to him privately: "I am a slacker major."

"But you achieve much more while slacking off than most others do while being industrious", he replied.

Perhaps so? What do I do while not doing useful stuff like washing dishes or going to the gym? I read hundreds of books. I make jewellery, cards and other papercraft, I knit and sew, draw and paint. These are some of my favourite things to do, and I keep myself busy with them, instead of doing less interesting things like chores.

Most of the time I'm reading, admittedly. But reading is learning and broadening my mind, no matter what I read. I can study history or read an SF novel, doesn't matter. Alot of the time I think I should read less and paint/sew/whatever more, because I am forever finding myself not having time for projects that are started and have a deadline (christmas presents, anyone?) as well as really good ideas I've dreamt up.

The main thing for me however, is that I hate not doing anything. Just sitting still and watching TV is plain impossible, I get bored out of my mind within ten minutes. Going to the cinema is a challenge. I want to, have to, work.

So, back to the original question. Do I really slack, or am I industrious in less obvious ways?

My original post ended there. However, my book about Writing says I must never end with a question, no matter how rhetorical, I should always end with a conclusion. So here we go:

I think I could perhaps hazard to claim that I am suffering of good old-fashioned artist's absent-mindedness. Meaning in most cases that I am too busy with my projects to worry about wordly worries like dishes, food or my fattening bum, that I get so absorbed in my latest endeavor that having an hour less to work on it because I have to cook lunches for work or do dishes, is something I can't even bear to consider. Thus, my own diagnosis is: I am not lazy, I have different priorities.


  1. Wow...I so, so much really like your writing style, not just from the fact I can easily identify with the subject matter in this particular post, but also the free and easy way with which you communicate from the mind and heart.
    I just added several smiley faces and a star or two to the index card that goes with your permanent file.

  2. Thankyou. Not much more to say, I haven't written much the past seven-eight years (and what I have written has tended to be in my notebook, not available for public perusal), but I must admit I have heard that description of how I write before. Getting compliments and having people agree, always feel good no matter how many times you hear it, though! Disclaimer to the last: Possibly unless one would happen to live in a situation where everyone forever agrees with oneself. I can imagine that becoming boring.

  3. I totally agree with that...and so do I...


Be nice!