Friday, June 30, 2006

...and so we have wrapped up half of 2006. Odd, that.

I took all last week off to do something altruistic. I was involved in a vitality-draining, soul-sucking commitment that broke my old ass plumb the hell down, you know what I'm saying? I was exhausted. Something about dealing with huge terrorist cells of other people's offspring is incredibly enervating.

Dissolving into a puddle Friday night in a compromised state, I downloaded a pitifully remedial little game called "Cake Mania," which I would wager is aimed at 8 to11 year old girls - which just happens to be my demographic. I LOVED it instantly.
(OH, But DON'T download it whatever you do - it's done something wonky to my machine.)

Anyway, I started playing it about 10:45 Friday night, and I knew it must be getting late when the inside of my eyelids started feeling like sandpaper. Yet, still I perservered making cakes and running my little bakery through trials and tribulations and disgruntled customers. It's not a problem--I can quit any time.

Husband came into the room and said "do you know what time it is?" I said no. He said "it's 1:30," and looked at me as if he expected me to sputter an excuse or something. I chirped back - "oh wow, that's late, cool. thanks for telling me."

He turned and went back to bed. About 10 minutes later he came back in with a flourish worthy of Bela Lugosi and squatted in a dancing-about-a-cauldron pose with legs akimbo, arms upstretched like the Planet of the Apes orangutan scarecrows, practically shouting "You're wasting your life!"

I stared at him blankly as is my custom when confronted with abject idiocy. *blink* *blink*

He finally STFU and went to bed. The next day he was all apologies and he said he was sorry that he-- and here he stuck, unable to finish putting into words what he'd done, so I helped him finish the sentence-- "overloaded your jerk chip?"

Yes, he agreed with me.
The whole "wasting your life" thing is relative, innit?

I mean, shit, what the hell was I doing all week when I could have been earning money but no, I gave my time freely and spent hundreds of dollars on extras for the kids at the event??? After all that I was foolishly squandering my time, and certainly was not entitled to a spare minute to cool my boots at the task of some mindless entertainment?

Funny, but from his reaction and the big 5-dimensional drama queen stank, you would think he just busted me with a bottle of everclear in one fist, a joint in the other, engaging in lewd acts with the landscape guy while watching midget porn.

A little bit of perspective and proportionality is always helpful when you're setting out to condemn the people you deal with in life. In the case of someone in your inner circle you wish to remain in contact with, perhaps it's best to give a free pass once in a while, even if you do see them sprawling, glassy-eyed with their fingers twitching on the crack-pipe mouse of a short-bus game. That way apologies are not needed later and one might spare oneself lots of embarrassment.

I'm just saying...


DogMa said...

I've so had this fight like 743 times with my old man.

One day I will wake up around 3PM and my laptop will be cockeyed in the toilet bowel. gets that bad.

phlegmfatale said...

Well, I don't call that a fight - there have to be two participants in order to call it a fight. Woe betide the mortal who drives me to respond with rancor, because I don't like wasting time on nitpicking bullshitters.

Never have, never will. But I reserve the right to bitch about it!

Now, Cake Mania: THAT is a proper waste of my precious time!

Dick said...

Midget porn... My how you do know the magic words, you nocturnal little minx you.
Strange, I was wide awake at 1:30 this morning as well. Not normal for me though.

Anonymous said...

< he just busted me with a bottle of everclear in one fist, a joint in the other, engaging in lewd acts with the landscape guy while watching midget porn. >
Alright, I have to ask for a cease and desist from quoting my arrest affidavit in your blog just for the sake of hyperbole. And the landscape guy was really a GIRL for the record ( okay she had short hair and was a little flat chested, wait - she was hung better than me, too...but that's not unusual), - Oh, and the everclear had a little O.J. FYI...
So you were busted by the Spare TIme Police. The STP - setting standards for everyone since the Puritans landed. Isn't always pleasant to be reminded your life isn't your own?
xxxooo -Al

phlegmfatale said...

dick - I confess I had no sooner tapped the words "midget porn" on the old plastic than the thought of you sashayed across my brainpan. Well, we can't ALL be night owls, can we? Who would keep the stores open days for the diurnal folk?

anonymous - Ah, you've seen through my little trope, Al - your arrest warrant is a mere plaything, a lowly toy to be manipulated for my own nefarious purposes. Yes, the STP are and ever will be with us. Nature's little hall monitors are bright and shiny with their fluourescent crossing-guard vest on and ready to demand your bathroom pass. It's a glorious thing - inspiring storm clouds to cross an ever-censorial countenance. But that is my lot.

phlegmfatale said...

ben heller - SOOOO nice to see you - and your music site is looking amazing, by the way. I popped in this morning but I was about to fall asleep, so I'm taking time to check it all out really soon.

You know, it IS relative what is considered wasting one's time. Our time is a lot like our brain power - we really use less than 10% of it. The truth is how you spend your days IS how you spend your life, and yeah, I goof off, but I have my own inner calendar with objectives I work toward and I have to fit my personal goals in around all the other commitments like that big volunteer thing that took over my spare time utterly for several weeks before the actual week of the event. Just because I'm not constantly talking about them doesn't mean I don't have goals!

And yes, I satisfied ALL the customers. I made it all the way through the game at last yesterday, and I've broken its spell over me. I will play through several more times, but I think at last I can shake it, now that I've seen the other side of the mountain. The game has 4 different settings and you work through the calendar in one setting and move on to the next. There are various customers, some with shorter fuses than others. The Easter Bunnies are pretty hot-headed and so are the cupids, and THEN there are the Bridezillas who are evil incarnate. No, not obsessed, much.

Anonymous said...

Variants of the Ten-Percent Myth

The myth is not simply a static, misunderstood factoid. It has several forms, and this adaptability gives it a shelf life longer than lacquered Spam. In the basic form, the myth claims that years ago a scientist discovered that we indeed did use only ten percent of our brains. Another variant is that only ten percent of the brain had been mapped, and this in turn became misunderstood as ten percent used. A third variant was described earlier by Craig Karges. This view is that the brain is somehow divided neatly into two parts: the conscious mind which is used ten to twenty percent of the time (presumably at capacity); and the subconscious mind, where the remaining eighty to ninety percent of the brain is unused. This description betrays a profound misunderstanding of brain function research.
Part of the reason for the long life of the myth is that if one variant can be proven incorrect, the person who held the belief can simply shift the reason for his belief to another basis, while the belief itself stays intact. So, for example, if a person is shown that PET scans depict activity throughout the entire brain, he can still claim that, well, the ninety percent figure really referred to the subconscious mind, and therefore the Ten-Percent figure is still basically correct.

Regardless of the exact version heard, the myth is spread and repeated, by both the well-meaning and the deliberately deceptive. The belief that remains, then, is what Robert J. Samuelson termed a "psycho-fact, [a] belief that, though not supported by hard evidence, is taken as real because its constant repetition changes the way we experience life." People who don't know any better will repeat it over and over, until, like the admonition against swimming right after you eat, the claim is widely believed. ("Triumph of the Psycho-Fact," Newsweek, May 9, 1994.)

Barbara Bruederlin said...

Well, you had customers to satisfy! You couldn't just leave them in the lurch, now could you? I got addicted to Bejewelled for a few weeks, where you make rows or columns of three identical jewel shapes. Very simple concept, very addictive. Once I kept one game going for 25 minutes and then had these shapes burned onto the inside of my retinas for the rest of the night.

phlegmfatale said...

Anonymous - Al? Is that you? OK, thanks! Now I'm going to have to lacquer some Spam. Actually, I'm a jewelry maker, and I was thinking of making some lacquered Spam beads for an "ugliest necklace" competition a bead group was holding. *throat clearing* So here I am, the ignorant regurgitating an oft-repeated misconception. I dunno. How much of our brain DO we use? If we can quantify it's NOT 10%, how much is it, then? Actually, I like it better that way - the possibility that we're not simply squandering brain power, keeping it locked in a closet without so much as you'd provide a hydroponic nursery. Thanks for this tidbit. I feel SO much smarter. :o)

barbara -yes, I had customers to satisfy, most particularly Bridezillas. I think I'm off the game for good. Last night I dreamt I was serving celebrities animated cakes. Eeek. I like bejeweled - I can play it on the computer at work when I'm on the phone answering the same questions over and over for callers. It keeps the slobber from pooling on the keyboard. I think I've ably demonstrated I can obsess over just about anything.