Anytime I hear about people wanting to leave full-time office work in favour of working from home, I want to stage an intervention. Same for people who express a desire to live in tiny houses. I have some experience with both. This is roughly my reaction in both cases:
Like every single person reading this, I own but have yet to finish reading David Foster Wallace’s Infinite Jest.
I also own a Bible and I haven’t read it cover to cover either, so clearly I am at ease with not knowing how things All Work Out In The End.
Despite my readerly failings, there is one passage from IJ that stuck with me, enough that I actually took the time to write it out by hand. Here it is in text, because oy, my handwriting:
One of my favourite words in the Spanish language is aguafiestas. It’s used to describe someone who ruins a good time. In English, the closest equivalent would be “party pooper.”
I mention that because I’m about to be an aguafiestas.
I’ll tell you up front: if you’re an actual person who actually lives under an actual rock, what I’m about to say will make little sense. But then again, you’ve chosen to set up shop with spiders and bats and pervasive dampness, and you’re willingly reading the dreck I shovel out, so I think we’ve established that sense isn’t your strong suit.
Yesterday, my son decided that he wanted to write a letter to his bear, Walter … so he did. As I described it on Facebook:
“The letter included Walter’s name, my kid’s name, a drawing of each, a drawing of a house and a drawing of a cave. Oh, and a drawing of some hydro wires. Then he made a bracelet for Walter, and included a set of keys (not ones we actually use). Then we weighed it (52 g), so we had to put five stamps (stickers) on it. Very productive afternoon.”
Inside the letter, he traced the letters I’d written. On the envelope, he printed them all by himself. I posted pictures of both, and his grandma (my mom) made a sweet and benign comment about how he is a “budding writer.”
“I’m giving up emoticons for Lent. So if you have any difficulties picking up on sarcasm, you might want to give me up for Lent.”
Source: Me, yesterday, on Twitter.
I did it last year — without an announcement — and it was hard enough, and I’m sufficiently annoyed with myself for my chronic reliance on those little yellow moodmen, that I think it merits a repeat. So from now through the end of March, no emoticons for me.