July 26th, 2009


In Praise of Dawdling

I am a dawdler. A putterer. A ditherer.

It gives me pleasure to laze about on a day with nothing in particular to do, thinking of what, in all the world things I could be doing, I will actually be pantsed to do. The very act of considering what I might do often is such a struggle that I just hang it all, and do nothing.

Frequently, I talk this over with the cat.

This past year has been full of things to do, things scheduled, places to be, items to check off. There has been precious little of a long exhalation, and asking that cat what we ought to do. "What shall we do today, cat?" Her answer is, inevitably, sleep. Sometimes she just sits and stares into space. Admirable activity that.

Last night I went to a play, and had dinner with a friend afterwards. This morning I got up to go surfing with scottgardner; the waves were quite high, there was a strong riptide, and the death of a surfer earlier this week meant the lifeguards were buzzing around like bees from a hive that had been poked. There were shouty surfers, hollering at anyone they felt wasn't moving fast enough, too. Moving fast just isn't my particular specialty, especially lately. It just seemed like too much work to paddle against the rip, to ignore the shouty jerks, to tell the goddamn lifeguards to shut the fuck up, because yes, asshole, I saw you, but you dropped in right under me because you weren't paying attention to anything other than the pretty girl in the bikini who "needed your help." You, jackass, are a lifeguard, not a cop, and you can go fuck yourself sideways, I've been surfing for years.

That's too much work. All that paddling and shouting. I prefer the bobbing peacefully on the water, looking at the pelicans and cormorants, and occasionally dropping in on a well-timed wave. Much better to trek home, hose off boards and selves and have a cold beer on the balcony.

And then, after Scotty took off for doing stuff, to sit around and wonder what I ought to do - to happily dawdle. "Cat, what should we do today?" I just asked. She's sitting on the ottoman, staring at my violin. She swivels and ear towards me and twitches her tail, acknowledging she's heard me. Her plan is to just sit around and relax.

An excellent plan. I do believe I shall join her.
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